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Alain Menu confident in i30 package despite bruising weekend in Dubai

Hyundai’s Alain Menu believes the i30 N TCR represents a competitive package in any of TCR’s regional or international championships next season despite a bruising weekend at the TCR International Series finale at Dubai Autodrome.

Menu and team-mate Gabriele Tarquini were evidently quick during free practice in the Middle East, despite having additional success ballast on board as a result of their race-winning performance in Zhejiang at the penultimate meeting.

Their temporary homologation also meant they were unable to participate in the second half of qualifying, and therefore lined up on the seventh row together for the opening race.

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Tarquini delivered a resounding performance to move himself up from 21st after an engine change overnight set him further back, and was running in the final podium position when some debris on-circuit punctured his front-left tyre and ruled him out of the running, whilst a bruised Menu was also sidelined with damage on the second lap.

Both cars enjoyed an improved showing in the finale, with Menu rounding out the top five, four positions clear of Tarquini.

Despite a difficult weekend at the Dubai Autodrome, the Swiss believes any customers looked to purchase the i30 will be met with a rewarding product, and praised the car’s performance despite the turbulent double-header to round out the season.

“It was a tough weekend for both me and Gabriele on track, but the performance of the i30 N TCR was exactly where we needed it,” said Menu.

“We were fast in practice and qualifying, but we had to start in the middle of pack where there is always a chance of contact and unfortunately we got involved in other people’s incidents.

“Driving through the field in Race 2 was really fun, I could rely on the handling of the car through the corners and power of the engine on the straight.

“These are the real strengths of the i30 N TCR which our customers will be able to enjoy when they compete at the front of any of the TCR championships next year.”

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