Hyundai boss hails 2018 WTCR season as greatest since mid-90s BTCC

Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing project manager Andrea Adamo has said the 2018 World Touring Car Cup season has been one of the strongest touring car seasons since the 1990s BTCC heyday.

Hyundai wrapped up both the drivers’ and teams’ titles at the WTCR season finale at Macau, with Gabriele Tarquini winning the drivers’ title, his first title since 2009, while the new YMR team won the teams’ title while racing a pair of the South Korean marque’s i30 N TCRs in the first year of the new series.

“In my opinion, the WTCR this year has been an amazing championship,” said Adamo to TouringCarTimes.

“I think we need to think back to the ‘90s BTCC to see so many manufacturers and top drivers and cars represented. This year there were seven manufacturers, and every one won a race.

“I have to say thank you to (WTCR promoter Francois) Ribeiro and (TCR promoter Marcello) Lotti, as they were able to create something amazing. They were able to work together again, to ignore past frictions, and they’ve done an amazing thing, and working together in the proper way, we’ll keep this thing alive for much longer.”

Teams’ champions YMR’s drivers Yvan Muller and Thed Björk will switch to the new Lynk & Co 03 TCR for 2019, with Adamo thanking Muller’s team, while also confirming he hopes Hyundai will field as equally strong a driver line-up next year.

“I wish all the best to Yvan and his team, as they did an amazing job as well. They always fought hard and I appreciated the way we all worked together. The last time I worked with Yvan was with Alfa Romeo in 2001 in the European Super Touring Championship. We ran a car for Yvan at the last minute, and he came, took pole position and won the first race, helping us to win the teams’ and drivers’ championships with (Fabrizio) Giovanardi.

“I also went many times to see Yvan in the Andros Trophy races as they were just over the border when I was living in Turin; it was an honour to work with him so closely this year. As they say in France, chapeau!

“As for next year, I hope to have at least the same level of drivers that I have had this year.”