Hyundai Team Engstler’s Max Hesse claimed his maiden victory in TCR Germany in race one at Zandvoort, after contact with erstwhile leader Mike Halder on the penultimate lap of the race.
At the start, pole-sitter Dominik Fugel led the field with a good start, whilst Pyro Motorsport’s Bradley Burns, who started second on the grid in his Honda, slipped back behind HP Racing’s Harald Proczyk in the first sequence of turns.
The racing only lasted one lap before a safety car, when Volkswagen Team Oettinger’s Mitchell Cheah was spun into the barriers exiting Turn 9 after contact with Michelle Halder, breaking the rear suspension on his Golf GTi.
The hit with the barriers also required a red flag for repairs to be made to the barrier, and it was a further ten minutes until racing resumed.
At the restart Hesse proved to be the biggest mover, passing Burns for fourth on lap four. At the front, Proczyk made a move on Fugel at turn 1 but there was slight contact and despite taking the lead the Hyundai driver was ordered to give the position back.
As Fugel was also passed by Halder and Hesse in the meantime, it meant that Proczyk would drop to fourth in an attempt to switch positions, gifting the lead to Halder followed by Hesse.
Hesse kept the pressure on at the front, and on lap 12 made a move at Turn 9, only for slight contact to give Halder the lead back. Halder then appeared to let Hesse back in front at Turn 11, giving the youngster a lead he would hold on to for the remaining three laps.
Halder took second, but as a result of finishing behind his German rival has slipped to fourth in the drivers’ standings.
Proczyk completed the podium, having got past Fugel for third, also at Turn 11 on lap 12.
Series leader Antti Buri was fifth in his LMS Racing Audi, ahead of Burns in sixth, who had a stable second half of the race after losing out early in the race.
Engstler Motorsport’s guest driver, journalist Lance David Arnold, was seventh on his TCR début, ahead of full-season Hyundai racer Theo Coicaud in eighth.
HP Racing’s Lukas Niedertscheider and Racing One’s René Kircher completed the top ten.
Race two gets underway at 16:05 CEST (15:05 BST) on Sunday.
|1||19||Max HESSE||Hyundai Team Engstler||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||14 LAPS||1:48.379||6|
|2||7||Mike HALDER||Profi-Car Team Honda ADAC Sachsen||Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR||14||2.081||1:48.389||4|
|3||1||Harald PROCZYK||HP Racing International||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||3.679||1:48.710||3|
|4||88||Dominik FUGEL||Profi-Car Team Honda ADAC Sachsen||Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR||14||4.123||1:48.842||1|
|5||13||Antti BURI||LMS Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||14||4.840||1:48.954||5|
|6||6||Bradley BURNS||Team Pyro Motorsport||Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR||14||5.698||1:49.181||2|
|7||103||Lance David ARNOLD||Hyundai Team Engstler 2||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||7.079||1:49.239||8|
|8||27||Theo COICAUD||Hyundai Team Engstler||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||15.677||1:49.746||15|
|9||42||Lukas NIEDERTSCHEIDER||HP Racing International||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||16.391||1:48.757||12|
|10||8||René KIRCHER||racing one||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||14||19.834||1:49.882||7|
|11||22||Julien APOTHÉLOZ||TOPCAR Sport||CUPRA TCR||14||20.638||1:49.796||10|
|12||53||Michelle HALDER||Profi-Car Team Halder||Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR||14||20.865||1:49.341||9|
|13||23||Sebastian STEIBEL||Steibel Motorsport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||22.874||1:49.207||14|
|14||99||Maurits SANDBERG||VW Team Oettinger||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||23.116||1:49.775||13|
|15||98||Jan SEYFFERT||Lubner Motorsport||LADA Vesta TCR||14||31.969||1:50.918||11|
|R||29||Mitchell CHEAH Min Jie||VW Team Oettinger||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||1||DNF||N/A||16|