Néstor Girolami has praised the teamwork at Münnich Motorsport after he took pole position for the opening FIA World Touring Car Cup race in Hungary, citing the fact that he and team-mate Esteban Guerrieri are ‘working in the same direction.’
Girolami ensured that Honda remained on top of the times at the Hungaroring by beating Cyan Racing’s Yvan Muller to pole position by just under two tenths of a second.
The result was especially special to Girolami given that it came in only his second WTCR event, and the Argentine put the performance down to cooperation with his team-mate Guerrieri.
“It’s nice and really special to be on pole,” said Girolami to TouringCars.Net. “It’s my first pole in WTCR in my second race, so it couldn’t be better.
“In Marrakech I was P3, but it was not possible to fight for P1. I did not take a big risk because it was my first time in WTCR on a street circuit and I didn’t want to make a mistake.
“But here on a normal track, I have more confidence and this confidence gave me a pole position, so I’m really happy.
“We know what we want [within the team], what the car wants to go fast and we work in the same direction. It’s not that one driver is asking for oversteer and another is asking for understeer at the same time; we are working in the same direction and I think this gives us a lot of confidence and a good way to improve the car.”
Girolami is predicting that Muller will make a good start in the Lynk & Co 03, and is hoping to come away with at least a strong points finish even if he can’t hold on to the lead at the start.
“We know that the blue cars have a really good start and a really good system to do a really good start, so this is our first thing to keep the position at the start.
“We have really good pace to keep the first position, and this has given me a lot of confidence. I did a long run in FP1 and the car felt really good, so I am quite happy with my car today and I think this is one of the tracks where Honda has a really strong pace.
“It would be good to finish P1 but if we can’t then it’s a chance to score points and bring it home and then tomorrow is another story.”
Girolami also quipped that he was nervous about the effect a strong result could have on the compensation weight when it kicks in later in the season.
“I’m happy with my pole position but I’m really sad because I know I will get more weight for Zandvoort and this is not good for the championship, but what can I do? Go slow?
“There is no point – I have to go as fast as I can and bring the points home.”