After securing an impressive 1-2 finish at the Race of Germany, Engstler Motorsport is targeting another strong result at the second round of the 2021 WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup season, Race of Portugal.
At the debut WTCR event of the new Hyundai Elantra N TCR, Jean-Karl Vernay took victory for the Engstler Hyundai N Liqui Moly Racing Team in Race 2 at the Nürburgring. The Frenchman’s teammate, Luca Engstler, finished in a close second and picked up his first-ever WTCR podium. These results have helped put the Germany-based team at the top of the standings, holding a seven-point advantage over its closest rivals heading to Portugal. The Circuito do Estoril, a late addition to the 2021 WTCR calendar, will present new challenges for the team and its drivers. The track, located roughly 35 kilometres from Lisbon, boasts a 986 metre straight, a series of fast corners and two heavy braking hairpins. Though arguably not as demanding as the Nürburgring, Estoril still requires high levels of concentration and technique from the drivers. For both Engstler and the Engstler Motorsport team, Race of Portugal will mark their first visit to Estoril. Vernay is more familiar with the venue, having previously tested and raced on the 4.182km circuit. Race of Portugal kicks off on Saturday 26 June with two free practice sessions followed by the return of WTCR’s three-phase qualifying. Both Race 1 and Race 2 will take place on Sunday 27 June, competed over 13 and 15 laps respectively. Franz Engstler, Team Principal of Engstler Hyundai N Liqui Moly Racing Team said: “We couldn’t have asked for a better start to the season than taking a double podium at Race of Germany, our home race. As we head to Estoril for Race of Portugal, our efforts are focused on continuing that momentum and achieving another strong result. Although the circuit will be new for us as a team, we know that the Hyundai Elantra N TCR can continue to fight at the front of the field. Our mission is for more podium celebrations in Portugal this week.” Jean-Karl Vernay said: “It is always a pleasure to go to Portugal. I know Estoril pretty well, having both raced and tested there in the past. Hopefully we will be quick and enjoy a strong performance in the same spirit as the first round in Germany. I’m super motivated and prepared for a good weekend. The priority is to score points and hopefully we can still lead the championship after this round.” Luca Engstler said: “After my weekend at the Red Bull Ring in TCR Germany, I launched straight into my preparations for the Race of Portugal. It will be a challenge as I have never been to the circuit before, however I had a similar experience many times in my first season of WTCR. I know what I need to do to arrive fully prepared. Hopefully we can have another good weekend and challenge for victory in Estoril.” For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.