ROUTE TO: VALENCIA, SPAIN
The 9th and 10th rounds of the FIA WTCC will take place in Spain, at Valencia’s Circuit Ricardo Tormo on May 30th and 31st. This is the sixth consecutive visit of the FIA Touring Cars to the Spanish stadium-like racetrack.
Alfa Romeo dominated the 2004 FIA European Touring Car Championship meeting, with Fabrizio Giovanardi and Gabriele Tarquini who took one victory apiece. The following year, on the FIA WTCC inaugural season, local hero Jordi Gené started from pole position to give the new SEAT León its first win, while Jörg Müller won Race 2 for BMW. In 2006 Alfa Romeo won again with Augusto Farfus in the first race and BMW’s Jörg Müller encored in the second one. The 2007 event was the Italian manufacturer’s swan song as James Thompson claimed a double victory after two breathtaking races.
Last year the Chevrolet team broke their duck at the Spanish racetrack. Robert Huff, who had been involved in three consecutive first-turn pile ups from 2005 to 2007, charged from fourth on the grid to first under the chequered flag. In Race 2 Alain Menu scored Chevrolet’s second win of the day, while his team-mate Huff recovered from eight on the reverse grid to a brilliant second.
The WTCC cars always attract large crowd in Valencia
FIA CLARIFIES ENGINE MATTERS
Following the never ending technical checks in Pau, the FIA Technical Department issued clarifications on both the engine speed limits and the measurement of the supercharged air pressure.
ENGINE SPEED – The limits (8500 or 4200 rpm for petrol and diesel engines respectively) represent the maximum speed the engine can reach when it works as a motor. Cases of overreving while downshifting, wheelspinning and jumping over the kerbs will not be taken into account.
SUPERCHARGED AIR PRESSURE – The limit of the relative pressure for the turbodiesel engines has been raised to 2.7 bar by a decision from the FIA Touring Car Bureau. Overboost pressure spikes above this limit – due to instability phenomena like gear shifting – which last less than one second will be allowed.
BMW ON MAXIMUM COMPENSATION WEIGHT
Although they still have to claim their first victory of the season the BMW 320si cars are the fastest WTCC machines so far according to the calculation determining the compensation weight for the next event.
The compensation weight for Valencia was calculated taking into account the lap times set in the three previous events (Mexico, Morocco and France).
The BMW emerged as the reference model and will receive a 40kg ballast for the races in Spain, while the Chevrolet Cruze (0.4 seconds slower) will be laden with 30 extra kilos and the SEAT Tdi (0.5 seconds slower) with 20.
All the other cars – LADA 110, SEAT León TFSI and Alessandro Zanardi’s BMW 320si (the only one equipped with a sequential gearbox) – will have 20kg deducted from their minimum weight.
Compensation weights Valencia
+ 40 kg BMW 320si
+ 30 kg Chevrolet Cruze LT
+ 20 kg SEAT León TDI
– 20 kg BMW 320si Zanardi, LADA 110, SEAT León TFSI