Yann Ehrlacher made the most of the mandatory 'joker lap' of the FIA World Touring Car Cup race on the fearsome Vila Real street circuit to finish second and claim his fourth podium finish of 2019.
The French Lynk & Co Cyan Racing driver started third and was stuck behind Hyundai driver Augusto Farfus in the first part of the race. But Yann Ehrlacher took the mandatory 'joker lap'* and set a new lap record to get ahead into second place.
"This was not a victory, but overtaking Augusto (Farfus) with the joker lap felt like a victory. He was holding me up in the beginning of the race and I was able to save my tyres. Then I pushed for one lap after the joker with the juice I had left in my tyres and it worked. We can be really pleased with this result, the team gave me a great car and we scored important points to the championship," said Yann Ehrlacher.
Thed Björk, who is placed third in the championship, started ninth and gained one position to finish eighth ahead of team-mate and four-time World Champion Yvan Muller.
"I had better place than some of the competitors in front of me but it is so difficult to overtake at this track. We got some points and we will keep pushing. The work that we have ahead of us for qualifying and the two races tomorrow will be so important," said Thed Björk.
"I was able to gain a couple of positions but we could not expect a better result than this with the grid position we had on this circuit. We need to fix the issues we had in practice and qualifying today to climb the order tomorrow," said Yvan Muller.
Andy Priaulx was also a man on the move in the first race of the Portuguese WTCR weekend and finished 12th from 15th position on the grid.
"This was a good race for me to make some places and score points to Lynk & Co Cyan Racing. I am happy to contribute to the performance of the team," said Andy Priaulx.
Thed Björk gained nine points on championship leader Esteban Guerrieri and keeps third place in the championship. Yann Ehrlacher has jumped four positions in the standings to eighth position. Team Cyan Racing Lynk & Co keeps third in the teams' championship.
The FIA WTCR weekend in Portugal continues tomorrow with qualifying and two races, follow Lynk & Co Cyan Racing on: www.cyanracing.com
* = The joker lap is a longer loop of the regular circuit that all drivers have to complete once each race.
Results Race 1
Points for drivers – Top 5
1 Esteban Guerrieri Honda Civic 215 points
2 Norbert Michelisz Hyundai i30 200 (-15)
3 Thed Björk Lynk & Co 03 169 (-46)
4 Néstor Girolami Honda Civic 159 (-57)
5 Frederic Vervich Audi RS 3 132 (-83)
7 Yvan Muller Lynk & Co 03 122 (-93)
8 Yann Ehrlacher Lynk & Co 03 121 (-94)
20 Andy Priaulx Lynk & Co 03 41 (-174)
Points for teams – Top 5
1 Münnich Motorsport 374 points
2 BRC Hyundai Squadra 318 (-56)
3 Cyan Racing Lynk & Co 291 (-83)
4 BRC Hyundai Lukoil 225 (-149)
5 SLR Racing Volkswagen 173 (-201)
8 Cyan Performance Lynk & Co 162 (-212)
+46(0)70 241 3234
About Cyan Racing
Cyan Racing was founded in 1996 and was formerly named Polestar until Volvo Cars acquired the performance section and trademark in 2015. Cyan Racing is privately owned and operated. The team has claimed multiple titles, most recently the 2018 FIA World Touring Car Cup team title and the double 2017 FIA World Touring Car Championship titles for driver and manufacturer – and participated in the development of the Polestar performance models of the Volvo S60 and V60 in the years 2013 to 2015.
About Lynk & Co
Lynk & Co is the new global urban mobility brand addressing the needs and preferences of the connected generation and challenging auto industry conventions. Its products are designed and engineered in Sweden and will be sold globally.