Norbert Michelisz admits that he lacked the confidence to push for victory in the main World Touring Car Championship race in Macau, citing his accident on Saturday as the reason he settled for second.
Having caused the race-ending red flags to be shown in Saturday’s Opening Race, Michelisz gave the factory Honda team a huge task overnight to repair his damaged Civic ahead of Sunday’s Main Race.
Thankfully for the Hungarian, the Honda mechanics completed the job and he was able to take up his front-row grid position for the Guia race.
Having come close to disaster on Saturday, Michelisz ultimately kept the fifth position he was in at the time of his shunt. But having come so close to a disaster in his championship campaign, he felt that he lacked a bit of confidence in the Main Race, ultimately opting to settle for second behind Macau master Rob Huff.
“First of all, I have to say a huge thank you to the team because after yesterday we were pretty much in the same position as Rob except we had two cars with damage,” said Michelisz. “The boys did not sleep, so I have to say thank you to them for the amazing car today.
“Last night I was worried, to be honest, about whether I would be on the starting grid, but in the end we made it.
“In the race I really tried to attack, and I expected us to be stronger in the wet. When there was some water on the circuit I think I had a slightly faster package than Rob.
“But in the end, thinking about yesterday, I was not confident enough to risk something happening again, and this made a difference.”
Michelisz has nevertheless moved closer to championship leader Thed Björk with his podium, with the gap reduced to just 6.5 points ahead of the season finale in Qatar.
“Thinking about the championship 6.5 points means it’s all up for grabs in Qatar and I’m confident. We were strong there last year, and I will really try to do my best not to make any mistakes to get the most out of myself and the car.
“In the end if it works out for sure I’ll be really happy. But the most important thing is to have the feeling that I’ve done everything I can and this is my goal.”