Borković: Only ‘impossible to pass’ Coronel prevented win in Pau from eighth on grid
Dušan Borković rose from eighth to second in TCR Europe Race 2 in Pau, but knew his charge would not take him to victory due to a straightline speed deficit.
The Target Competition driver made up four places on the opening lap, then gained another spot when Comtoyou Racing’s Viktor Davidovski suffered a puncture on lap seven. On lap 12 he then made a daring pass on Davidovski’s team-mate John Filippi for second place at the Buisson hairpin, then closed in on Tom Coronel – another Comtoyou driver – but could not find a way of making a pass.
The Comtoyou fleet of Audi RS 3 LMS IIs used old tyres on the rear of the car and new tyres for the front wheels, while Borković reused his Race 1 rubber for his Hyundai Elantra N TCR.
“This is a difficult circuit to do overtaking, and also I expected some strange things on the start. So I didn’t put on new tyres, but it was enough because in the first two, three laps anyways it was traffic, and then after that I was putting in some pace,” he said to TouringCarTimes.
“When I overtook Filippi I was catching Tom, but it was impossible because I know that Tom is difficult. I am also difficult, I know how to overtake but I know that he knows how to defend and it would be chaos. I really wanted to avoid that.
“And I appreciate him. We have been driving for many years together, so I didn’t want to do any incident because I was already P2 with a lot of points. But anyways I was missing the only chance where I had was braking, and I was missing a lot on the straights so they [the Audis] were pulling away a lot.”
On the move that earned him second place, and lifts him to third in the standings, Borković said:
“Filippi was really defensively driving today. It was good, but in some moments he was moving a little bit too much. And I knew that I was faster and I think that he appreciated it because I saw that he saw that I was faster. Because the guys behind were giving me the pressure, and I had to do some move.
“But with Coronel it was a little bit less possible because in that sector he was a little bit faster than Filippi. And on the straight he was pulling away.
“Anyways, thanks to the team. They did an amazing job, and also the Hyundai was really, really good for these [low-speed] corners, I was really happy with anything. Just if we had a little bit more power, but I don’t know.”
Borković also commented on Davidovski’s puncture, and reckoned he was not at risk thanks to the tyre pressures Target had chosen. Yet he was “trying to avoid the kerbs as much as possible” regardless.
“But when you are avoiding them, you are losing time. So yesterday when I made some gap on [Kobe] Pauwels, I was trying to avoid [kerbs], and then I saw immediately he closed the gap.
“So again I had to push a little bit more to make the gap open. Because my only chance was in the sector with the first corner – the first sector and a corner in the second sector, because in the third sector they [the Audis] were killing me massively. So everything was okay [to still secure second].”