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Norbert Michelisz looking forward to ‘second home event’

Norbert Michelisz is looking forward to racing on the Slovakiaring in this weekend’s FIA World Touring Car Cup races, with the Hungarian driver feeling like it is a ‘second home event’ due to the proximity to his homeland.

The BRC Racing driver scored his first podium finish of the season last time out in Hungary when he finished second in race three behind Hyundai team-mate Gabriele Tarquini, and as such he heads into this weekend’s event on good form.

The Hungarian admits that he enjoys visiting the Slovakian circuit, approximately 30 km south-east of Bratislava, as it is so close to Hungary and attracts a strong contingent of travelling supporters.

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On top of that, Michelisz has tasted victory previously in Slovakia, when he won race three last year.

“I always enjoy coming to Slovakia and I’m not just saying this because I’m in font of Slovakian journalists,” said Michelisz. “For me it always feels like a second home event; we have a lot of Hungarian fans coming, the atmosphere is always nice.

“This combined with the nature of the circuit, which I really like a lot, makes it one of my favourite events of the year.

“I am really happy to be back like I said and a lot more confident about my performance than I was before Marrakech and Hungary.”

The Hyundai i30 N TCR cars will have a benefit over some of its rivals this weekend as the South Korean cars have lost 30 kg of weight under the compensation weight system.

All cars started the year with 60 kg, but based on performances in the first two events the Hyundais will drop to 30 kg, whilst the Hondas are the heaviest with 60 kg, followed by the Lynk & Co, CUPRA and Audi cars on 40 kg.

Michelisz believes that the reduction in weight will have a big impact on the fast and flowing Slovakiaring.

“Based on the new weight we will have for this season you will see a different order of cars being in the front from this weekend.

“The success ballast system comes into play and because of that our car is a bit lighter than some of competitors. On a long circuit like this it will have a big effect and excitement is guaranteed.

“You had an idea of where you are from the first two race events but because of the success ballast system we will see very close fights and also people at the front who didn’t have the chance to do this in the first two events.

“Everyone who is interested about coming to the race for sure should do that. Because like you saw in previous years the circuit is wide, we had a lot of action and a lot of thrill and I think it will be the same this year.”


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