Gilles Magnus believes his Audi RS 3 LMS had the speed to win the second TCR Europe race at Circuit de Barcelona-Catlunya, but praised eventual winner Dan Lloyd for his defensive performance.
The TCR Benelux title contender made a level start with Lloyd’s Brutal Fish Racing Team-run Honda Civic Type R FK7, but despite sticking close behind, ultimately couldn’t find a way past.
The eventual margin between the duo at the chequered flag was half a second; it marks Magnus’ first podium since the opener at Spa-Francorchamps earlier this season.
“I felt I definitely had the speed to take the win today, but maybe after such a disappointing last two races I just wanted to finish,” Magnus told TouringCars.net.
“Even if it was P2, it was better to finish and take the points for the championship.
“We can be relieved to end the weekend on a high, after all the shit we’ve had this year thanks to technical problems and some mistakes on my part as well.
“We’re back in the positive circle ahead of Monza now.”
The Audi’s performance in a straight line made it the punter’s choice ahead of the weekend, but Magnus said Lloyd’s stoic defensive drive scuppered any chance of seizing top spot.
“It was obvious that the straight line speed [of my car] was much better but he defended really well and he covered the inside line well so it was difficult,” he explained.
“Then the traction of the Honda is very good so the exits of Turn 14 was way too good to be able to pass him.
“I knew if he was smart enough to cover the inside like he did, it was impossible to pass, but I’m sure our speed was better.”
The TCR Europe season concludes at Monza, Italy, on 12-13 October.