Rob Huff left Morocco in positive spirits after a ‘fantastic first weekend’ in the new FIA World Touring Car Cup (WTCR) in Marrakech, in which the Brit claimed a podium on his way to seventh overall in the standings.
Huff started the weekend in anger with a strong Saturday, in which he qualified his Sébastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen Golf in fourth for the first race of the series.
He then converted that into third in Saturday afternoon’s first race, but a puncture whilst he was running in fifth in race two prevented a points finish.
The 2012 WTCC champion then followed up with a seventh in race three to ensure that he remains amongst the best of the non-Hyundai drivers after the first weekend, with 24 points to his name.
“It’s been a great start to the championship,” said Huff. “It was a very good first qualifying session and first race. I was a little unlucky with a puncture [in race two], which we believe was due to debris, as it was a slow puncture and then exploded six laps later.
“There was a bit of a kerfuffle at the start of race three. I had a good switchback as everyone went deep into Turn 1, but then I was side-by-side with my new team-mate into Turn 2, and at this point of the season there’s no point taking any risks and the last thing we’d want is two cars in the wall.
“After that, there wasn’t much to do except follow everyone around. I was following very closely behind in both races, which is something we can do in these TCR cars. I was waiting for an opportunity to make a move, but sadly it never arose.”
Huff praised his team for their efforts and also the atmosphere created by the new series, which was using both new sporting and technical regulations for the first time.
“It was a strong performance for us and the team at a circuit where we thought we’d struggle. Our pace was good, and now we’re third in the teams’ championship.
“It was good to get a podium on Saturday, and also good for my team-mate Mehdi [Bennani] to get a podium at his home race on Sunday.
“It was also a great event for the spectators and a fantastic first weekend for the championship.”