Photo: TCR Eastern Europe

Patrick Sing wins on his TCR Eastern Europe debut

TCR Germany regular Patrick Sing won the first race of the TCR Eastern Europe weekend at the Red Bull Ring, a race marred by retirements.

Milenko Vuković started from pole position and was the only driver with the lap time under one minute and 38 seconds during qualifying.

Behind the Megane driver on the grid was the Hyundai i30 N TCR of Petr Semerád and the Cupra of Petr Čížek, while fourth fastest lap time went to Sing.

Vuković made a perfect start to keep the lead into Turn 1, while Semerád fell all the way down to sixth. Sing made a strong start and managed to get into second ahead of Čížek, while Milovan Vesnić, who started in eighth place, got up to fourth.

Vesnić started dropping places during the second lap, with both Janík Motorsport drivers going past him.

Lap four began with Vuković also starting to lose places, ultimately retiring from the race and the lead was inherited by series newcomer Sing, with Čížek and Semerád close behind.

Čížek and Semerád made contact at Turn 3, but the positions remained unchanged. On lap six, Čížek attempted a similar maneuver, but his left rear suspension snapped, which forced him to retire.

With Franjo Kovač retiring the other Renault Megane due to technical issues, there was only eleven runners left in the race. The numer of cars declined further on the last lap when Carol Wittke retired his Fullinrace Academy CUPRA Leon Competición.

Sing locked-up his tyres going to Turn 3 on the last lap, but still managed to keep the lead and won his first TCR Eastern Europe race.

Čížek crossed the line in second place, with Janík in third, his first TCR Eastern Europe podium.

Bartosz Groszek of Aditis Racing finished the race in fourth in his Audi RS 3 LMS to increase his championship lead and has got 52 points to his name, with Čížek going up to second place in the standings on 32 points. Semerád meanwhile fell to third in the standings on 30 points.

Sebastian Steibel and Levente Losonczy rounded off the top six.

The second Red Bull Ring race is on schedule for tomorrow at 10:55 CEST.