Photo: TCR Italy

Aurélien Comte makes it a double win at Mugello

Aurelién Comte of SP Competition claimed his second TCR Italy victory of the weekend in Race 2 at Mugello, another race dominated by safety car interventions.

Junui Park started from the reverse grid pole position in his Hyundai Elantra N TCR of Solite Indigo Racing, with Rubén Fernández of Auto Club RC2 Vallés completing the front row.

At the start, Fernández took the lead, with Comte climbing up to second place from sixth on the grid, followed by Park and Felice Jelmini (Audi).

Jelmini overtook Park for third place before the first lap was completed, with the Korean driver also losing to Franco Girolami (Audi RS 3 LMS) and Marco Butti (Hyundai Elantra N TCR).

The safety car was called into action as Raffaele Guerrieri (Cupra) lost a tyre after an incident with Michele Imberti and was left stuck in the gravel trap.

The race was relaunched on lap five, with Fernández charging ahead as Jelmini attacked Comte for second place at the fist corner. The restart saw Sergio López Bolotín retiring, with smoke coming out of the bonnet of his Audi.

The safety car came into action for the second time on lap six as Rodolfo Massaro crashed into the barriers with his Hyundai.

The race was green again in lap nine, with Park suffering a technical issue, dropping down the order.

Comte soon overtook Fernández for the lead after the restart, with Jelmini also trying his chances and the three arrived into Turn 1 side-by-side on lap ten. Jelmini succeeded in overtaking Fernández, who then came under fire from Girolami.

The Argentinian however had to focus on defending from Niels Langeveld, who recovered the gap and overtook the Audi driver on lap eleven. Girolami came back at Turn 1 on lap 12 and went wide, with Ruben Volt (Honda) and Marco Butti (Hyundai) overtaking the pair.

Girolami received a warning flag but was bumped off the track by Langeveld on the last lap.

Comte took the victory at the chequered flag, followed by Jelmini and Fernández. Volt was fourth, followed by Butti and Langeveld.

Felipe Fernández was seventh, followed by Denis Babuin, also with an Audi RS 3 LMS.

“It has been a fantastic weekend, and fantastic for the team,” said Comte after the race. “It has been difficult but it came out perfect in the end, so I’m very happy.”

After the two races at Mugello, Comte leads the drivers’ championship with 201 points. Girolami is four points behind in second and Langeveld is a further five points adrift in third.

The TCR Italy continues on September 15-17 at Monza.