ROUTE TO: OKAYAMA, JAPAN
The 19th and 20th rounds of the FIA WTCC will take place on October 31st at Okayama International Circuit, Japan.
This is the third time the championship has visited this demanding racetrack that winds up among the green hills of the Honshu island and hosted the Pacific Formula 1 Grand Prix in 1994 and 1995.
Very wet weather plagued both the 2008 and 2009 events, however this did not prevent exciting races and a large attendance.
Incidents on the wet track and safety car interventions have been standard features in the previous year’s races. In 2008 pole sitter Augusto Farfus and Gabriele Tarquini were involved in a first turn incident at the start of the first race. The year after Tarquini lost his lead driving wide when Race 1 took the start behind the safety car.
SEAT won both races in 2008, with Rickard Rydell’s León TDI and Tom Coronel’s petrol-powered León. The latter became the first (and only so far) non factory driver to win a WTCC race.
Last year BMW drivers made a double, with Andy Priaulx and Augusto Farfus claiming one victory apiece.
Japanese fans are ready to brave bad weather to attend WTCC races
MICHAËL ROSSI FACES WTCC DEBUT
22-years old Frenchman Michaël Rossi will make his maiden appearance in the FIA WTCC next week in Japan.
At Okayama, Rossi will replace Jordi Gené at the wheel of a SR-Sport SEAT León TDI, the same car that will be driven by local hero André Couto at Macau.
After a traditional beginning in karting and formative formulas, Rossi switched to tin top racing. He won the 2008 Renault Mégane Eurocup and this year was classified a close second in the SEAT León Eurocup.
He also had the opportunity to try racing at a more competitive level, taking part in the first two rounds of the FIA European Touring Car Cup in a SUNRED petrol-powered SEAT León.
After driving a S2000 SEAT León in the ETCC, Michaël Rossi is ready for WTCC
HUFF VISITS CHINA AS CHEVROLET TESTS IN UK
Rob Huff is curreltly acting as Chevrolet’s ambassador in China, where he was invited by GM China to coach the media who are attending the launch of the Cruze 1.6L turbo road car.
At the same time the 2011 Cruze car continues its development and testing programme. With Huff in China and the duo Menu-Muller commited to race in Australia, RML’s BTCC driver Alex MacDowall was charged to test the new car at Snetterton.
Rob Huff attended the Cinese launch of the Chevrolet Cruze 1.6 Turbo road car
PRIAULX, MENU, MULLER AND MONTEIRO DOWN UNDER
WTCC drivers Andy Priaulx, Alain Menu, Yvan Muller and Tiago Monteiro will race at Surfers‘ Paradise, Australia this weekend in the Gold Coast 600 round of the V8 Supercars series.
Priaulx, who shares a Holden Commodore with Craig Lowndes (currently third in the points), was the fastest of the international contingent during a wet test session on Wednesday.
Menu, Muller and Monteiro will also share Holden Commodore cars with Jason Bright, Greg Murphy and Tony D’Alberto respectively.