New campaign awaits Honda Racing's WTCR drivers
Honda Racing's quartet of drivers have the opportunity to keep up an enviable record when the fifth season of the WTCR - FIA World Touring Car Cup begins this weekend at the iconic Pau-Ville street circuit.
Each of the last three season-opening WTCR races has been won by drivers among the current Honda Racing roster, with Esteben Guerrieri, Nestor Girolami and Tiago Monteiro triumphing in 2019, 2020 and 2021 respectively - all at different circuits.
The three are joined by Attila Tassi to complete an unchanged driver line-up for a fourth season in a row, with the four carrying Honda's hopes at two customer racing teams: ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport and LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler.
ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport head into their fifth season as a Honda Racing customer team, with seasoned title contender Esteban and serial race winner Nestor piloting the two cars.
The team are one of the most successful in the WTCR, with 20 wins in four years of competition, and are also the most successful outfit to have competed with the Civic Type R TCR, having won more than 30 races with the car.
Esteban holds the outright record for WTCR wins, with 10, and is embarking on his fifth year not just with the team but also as a full-time Honda Racing driver.
Fellow Argentinian Nestor is preparing for his fourth campaign in the same scenario and has won at least one race each year so far.
LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler add a second title-challenging force to the Honda stable, as they embark on their first campaign with the Civic Type R TCR.
Knowledge of the car is provided in spades by Tiago and Attila, who like Esteban and Nestor are paired together for a fourth-straight season.
Tiago has two World Touring Car podium finishes in Pau to his name, and was on the grid when the World Touring Car Championship last raced in the city in 2009.
Attila was only nine years old when that round took place but, now 22, the Hungarian is preparing for his fourth campaign in the WTCR as a proven race winner. He has pedigree on street tracks too, having taken a pole position in Vila Real in his rookie season.
Both teams will be offered technical support by Honda’s motorsport partner JAS Motorsport. This includes a supply of spare parts and technical assistance at each event, with the aim of helping all Honda drivers with their title challenges.
The Pau weekend is the first of 10 on the 2022 WTCR calendar, which is also set to include rounds at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, historic touring car venue Vallelunga, plus two more iconic street tracks: Vila Real, in Portugal, and the Macau Guia Circuit - which is due to host the season finale.