Photo: TCR Europe

Tom Coronel enjoys his first TCR Europe series race as he moves up ten places

Tom Coronel has said he’s enjoyed his first TCR Europe Touring Car Series outing at Hockenheim, as the Dutch driver fought his way from 21st to 11th in the first race, finishing just behind the Peugeot 308TCRs of Jimmy and Teddy Clairet.

The Dutchman has been reunited with the Boutsen Ginion Racing team with which he raced in the World Touring Car Cup last year, driving the Honda Civic TCR.

After a gearshift issue in qualifying, where the paddle-shift operation reversed which meant that pushing rather than pulling the paddle would change up the gear, Coronel found himself starting from 21st in the 32-car grid and having to fight his way forward.

Coronel became embroiled in a fight with M Racing’s Nelson Panciatici with two laps to go, with Coronel forced off wide but rejoined aggressively, for which he received a warning.

“He pushed me off the track, and what could I do? I couldn’t do anything. He didn’t leave me the space,” said Coronel to TouringCarTimes.

“I was completely by his side and he pushed me on the grass – what could I do? I’m OK with it, I’m not angry with him, I had good fun,” he added.

“We had some good fights, I passed both the Clairets, but then they caught me and passed me back which was a shame. The Peugeots just pull away on the exits – I’m still strong under the brakes, but I don’t feel the performance of the car is any better than last year.”