Rob Huff is expecting the battle for the runner-up spot in this year’s World Touring Car Championship to intensify, as the Honda driver heads to China with a 22-point gap to close.
Huff has been on strong form in recent events, taking a double podium finish in Argentina and following it up with another visit to the podium in race one in Japan.
But the Brit has recently had to cope with carrying the full 80 kg of compensation weight in the championship, due to the gradual gains of the Civic WTCC over the season.
In Shanghai this weekend all five Honda cars (the three factory-backed cars and two Zengő Motorsport machines) will benefit from a 20 kg reduction, taking their compensation weight to 60 kg.
Huff believes that even without the weight reduction, Honda have now improved to the point that they can win with 80 kg on board, with Norbert Michelisz having achieved that feat in the Opening Race in Motegi.
“I’m confident of another strong weekend in China,” said Huff. “I’ve been on the podium in three of the last four races, which is something no other driver in the championship has managed, so that’s a very strong platform to be starting with.
“The team has made constant improvements to the Civic over the year and we’re now able to win even with a lot of compensation weight, as Norbi showed in Japan.”
Huff is 22 points adrift of team-mate Tiago Monteiro, who currently occupies the runner-up spot in the championship. The Brit knows that with just four races left to run it will be a close battle between himself, Monteiro, Citroën’s Yvan Muller, and the third Honda of Michelisz.
“The battle for second in the championship is getting very close and it will probably intensify as there are so few races left, but it should be fun.”