Comtoyou Racing’s Stefano Comini took his first win of the TCR International Series season in the first race at spa-Francorchamps, ahead of Boutsen Ginion Racing’s Benjamin Lessennes and M1RA’s Attila Tassi.
Comini started the race from pole position alongside team-mate Frédéric Vervisch, but neither of the Audi drivers got off to a strong start, allowing Tassi and Lessennes to get past before Turn 1.
Comini then followed the Hungarian for a lap before passing into Turn 5 early on lap two, and the double champion was unchallenged thereafter, as Tassi fought to hold on to a podium position.
Lessennes got past fellow Honda racer Tassi for second on lap three, although the Belgian Benelux driver had no answer to Comini ahead and couldn’t close the gap.
Tassi took third, and his second podium of the season, despite strong late-race pressure from Leopard Racing’s Jean-Karl Vernay, who had to settle for fourth.
Vervisch ended up in fifth in his first race in a front-wheel drive car, having lost out to Frenchman Vernay on lap five, whilst the second Leopard Volkswagen of Rob Huff took sixth.
Delahaye Racing Team’s Eduoard Mondron took seventh, being involved in a close battle with Boutsen Ginion Racing’s tom Coronel throughout the race, with Coronel having to settle for eighth on his TCR International début.
Craft-Bamboo Racing’s Pepe Oriola and DG Sport Compétition’s Pierre-Yves Corthals completed the top ten, with 11th-placed James Nash just missing out on the points despite getting a strong start to pass six cars when the lights went out.
WestCoast Racing’s Gianni Morbidelli was never a factor in the race for points and took the chequered flag in 12th, ahead of Zengő Motorsport’s Ferenc Ficza, who crossed the finish line with damaged left-rear suspension as a result of late-race contact whilst battling for the final point.
All 24 cars were classified as finishers in the race, although the last classified Opel of Mat’o Homola picked up a puncture and had to pit for a replacement tyre following contact from Maxime Potty.
The reverse grid second race takes place at 10:35 BST (11:35 CEST) on Saturday morning.
|1||1||Stefano COMINI||Comtoyou Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||9||9 LAPS||32.101||1|
|2||63||Benjamin LESSENNES||Boutsen Ginion Racing||Honda Civic Type-R TCR||9||3.547||32.839||3|
|3||9||Attila TASSI||M1RA||Honda Civic Type-R TCR||9||8.343||33.649||6|
|4||2||Jean-Karl VERNAY||Leopard Racing Team WRT||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||8.764||32.481||4|
|5||6||Frédéric VERVISCH||Comtoyou Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||9||9.063||33.256||2|
|6||3||Rob HUFF||Leopard Racing Team WRT||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||9.325||33.174||5|
|7||25||Edouard MONDRON||Delahaye Racing Team||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||9.619||33.170||8|
|8||64||Tom CORONEL||Boutsen Ginion Racing||Honda Civic Type-R TCR||9||10.550||32.962||7|
|9||74||Pepe ORIOLA||Lukoil Craft-Bamboo Racing||SEAT León TCR||9||11.790||33.369||9|
|10||23||Pierre-Yves CORTHALS||DG Sport Compétition||Opel Astra TCR||9||12.075||33.016||15|
|11||54||James NASH||Lukoil Craft-Bamboo Racing||SEAT León TCR||9||13.133||33.290||16|
|12||10||Gianni MORBIDELLI||West Coast Racing||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||13.552||33.441||13|
|13||55||Ferenc FICZA||Zengő Motorsport||SEAT León TCR||9||14.611||32.353||12|
|14||21||Giacomo ALTOÈ||West Coast Racing||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||14.611||33.509||14|
|15||7||Hugo VALENTE||Lukoil Craft-Bamboo Racing||SEAT León TCR||9||16.397||33.539||23|
|16||62||Dušan BORKOVIĆ||GE-Force||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||9||17.184||33.229||19|
|17||52||Maxime POTTY||Michaël Mazuin Sport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||9||19.149||33.746||10|
|18||16||Davit KAJAIA||GE-Force||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||9||19.450||34.147||11|
|19||12||Guillaume MONDRON||Delahaye Racing Team||SEAT León TCR||9||21.315||33.692||22|
|20||5||Roberto COLCIAGO||M1RA||Honda Civic Type-R TCR||9||25.797||34.517||18|
|21||11||Jens Reno MOLLER||Reno Racing||Honda Civic Type-R TCR||9||32.529||35.266||21|
|22||18||Duncan ENDE||Icarus Motorsports||SEAT León TCR||9||36.992||35.672||24|
|23||34||Stian PAULSEN||Stian Paulsen Racing||SEAT León TCR||8||1 LAP||34.209||20|
|24||70||Mat’o HOMOLA||DG Sport Compétition||Opel Astra TCR||8||1 LAP||33.711||17|