Zengő Motorsport’s Norbert Michelisz extended his lead to 25 points over SUNRED’s Pepe Oriola in the USA, after claiming a perfect score with pole, both fastest laps and two wins in the Yokohama Independents’ Trophy.
The Hungarian qualified in fifth on the grid, the top independent driver on the grid, and was able to keep the damaged SEAT of Gabriele Tarquini behind to claim third position in race one.
In race two, the 28-year-old had a fantastic start leaping up to fourth, and though the two Chevrolets of Yvan Muller adn Rob Huff were able to pass him in the early stage of the race, he was able to fight back later on with the rear-wheel drive BMW 320 TC, challenging Huff for victory until the end.
“After Yvan went into the pit, I knew there was a chance to win the race because I was sure Rob wouldn’t take any risks, but I was not fast enough,” said Michelisz to TouringCarTimes. “I was a little bit faster but not fast enough to make a move.”
“It was a really nice weekend with two podium finishes, important points for the overall and the independents’ championship, and it’s good to see the improvements the team is making and I’m making, and getting more confidence in driving the car and to get results like this on a difficult circuit is really a good thing.”.
Zengő Motorsport is one of the teams that have been rumoured to be in the frame to run Honda’s independent programme next season, though Michelisz was coy about the options that are available to the small Hungarian team.
“We have to get the best possible available car, but we are still making progress with the BMW, we’re still not at the end of the road,” said Michelisz. “To make a change, we first have to know how much potential (the BMW) has, and in the last couple of races we’ve seen that if the circumstances are right, the race pace is quite good and we have some other ideas on how to improve the performance.”
WTCC Independents’ Points after USA