Julien Briché keeps TCR Europe title hopes alive with lights-to-flag win

Julien Briché keeps TCR Europe title hopes alive with lights-to-flag win

Julien Briché
Photo: TCR Media

Julien Briché kept his title hopes in the TCR Europe series alive with a lights-to-flag win in race one at Monza, finishing ahead of fellow Peugeot racer Aurélien Comte as points leader Josh Files completed the podium.

Briché converted his pole position into a fourth win of the year in a relatively calm opening race in Italy, being guarded by DG Sport Compétition’s Comte throughout the race.

The start saw the two Frenchman move into a comfortable lead, whilst WRT’s Santiago Urrutia initially occupied third.

However, the Uruguayan lost the position on lap nine when Target Competition’s Files, who had moved up to sixth after the first lap and fourth by the end of lap two, passed him heading into the first turn.

Files lacked the pace to catch the leading Peugeots and had to settle for third, with the result seeing his championship advantage cut to 33 points ahead of Sunday’s season finale, with a total of 40 on offer in the race.

Urrutia took the chequered flag in fourth as the leading Audi, ahead of the second Target Hyundai of Mat’o Homola in fifth, the Slovakian having come through from 17th on the grid.

Comtoyou Racing’s Gilles Magnus was sixth, the Belgian having battled hard with Homola in the closing laps.

Andreas Bäckman was seventh in his Hyundai, although the Target Competition driver had two laps earlier been involved in close door-to-door battling with Brutal Fish Racing’s Dan Lloyd, who ultimately retired with a front-left puncture after slight contact with his Swedish rival.

Dominik Baumann followed his Target team-mate home in eighth, whilst the top ten was completed by the Peugeot of Teddy Clairet and M Racing Hyundai of Nelson Panciatici, who finished the race with damage after earlier contact with Gianni Morbidelli.

Morbidelli had earlier been knocked out of the top ten when he was hit by Luca Engstler at the end of the first lap, the incident ending the German’s race.

WestCoast Racing’s Morbidelli was adjudged to have been to blame for the contact with Panciatici later in the race and was handed a drive-through penalty, although the Italian opted to retire from the race rather than serve the sentence.

BRC Racing’s Luca Filippi retired after just one lap when his Hyundai was contacted by Comtoyou Racing’s Sami Taoufik at the first chicane and picked up left-rear damage.

PCR Sport’s John Filippi made up a couple of places late in the race to take 11th, ahead of series returnee Stian Paulsen in 12th.

Sometime entrant Klim Gavrilov was 13th, the Russian having slipped back in the later laps after at one stage battling for a top ten finish, ahead of rookie Taoufik in 14th. Viktor Davidovsky scored just his second points finish of the year in 15th.

Race two gets underway at 11:35 CEST (10:35 BST).

Race result

POS NO DRIVER NAT ENTRANT CAR LAPS TIME BEST GD
1 24 Julien BRICHÉ JSB Compétition Peugeot 308 TCR 13 25:42.193 1:57.785 1
2 7 Aurélien COMTE DG Sport Compétition Peugeot 308 TCR 13 0.409 1:57.942 2
3 9 Josh FILES Target Competition Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 4.710 1:57.748 9
4 55 Santiago URRUTIA Team WRT Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 8.113 1:58.124 3
5 70 Mat’o HOMOLA Target Competition Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 14.162 1:58.022 17
6 16 Gilles MAGNUS Comtoyou Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 15.488 1:58.279 8
7 19 Andreas BÄCKMAN Target Competition Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 17.555 1:58.146 12
8 58 Dominik BAUMANN Target Competition Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 17.564 1:58.665 22
9 111 Teddy CLAIRET Team Clairet Sport Peugeot 308 TCR 13 17.607 1:58.184 5
10 12 Nelson PANCIATICI M Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 18.458 1:58.170 20
11 27 John FILIPPI PCR Sport CUPRA TCR 13 19.203 1:58.955 11
12 34 Stian PAULSEN Stian Paulsen Racing CUPRA TCR 13 20.796 1:58.541 25
13 14 Klim GAVRILOV VRC Team Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 20.914 1:58.869 4
14 15 Sami TAOUFIK Comtoyou Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 23.638 1:58.690 15
15 10 Viktor DAVIDOVSKY PSS Racing Team Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR 13 24.776 1:58.946 18
16 22 Josh BURDON Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR 13 25.387 1:58.636 33
17 112 Jimmy CLAIRET Team Clairet Sport Peugeot 308 TCR 13 26.680 1:59.175 13
18 25 Natan BIHEL M Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 27.444 1:58.754 21
19 85 Guilherme SALAS Vuković Motorsport Renault Mégane RS TCR 13 28.387 1:58.873 28
20 88 Maxime POTTY Team WRT Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR 13 29.102 1:59.292 10
21 17 Martin RYBA Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR 13 30.041 1:58.962 30
22 46 Olli KANGAS WestCoast Racing Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR 13 33.446 1:59.206 26
23 91 Grigoriy BURLUTSKIY Carville Racing Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR 13 34.616 1:59.444 23
24 96 Abdulla Ali AL-KHELAIFI QMMF Racing by PCR Sport CUPRA TCR 13 34.642 1:59.652 19
25 26 Jessica BÄCKMAN Target Competition Hyundai i30 N TCR 13 37.037 1:59.134 27
26 21 Marie BAUS-COPPENS JSB Compétition CUPRA TCR 13 44.620 2:00.053 29
27 23 Tamás TENKE Zengő Motorsport CUPRA TCR 13 50.227 1:59.617 24
28 117 Albert LEGUTKO Legutko Racing – ADAC Berlin Honda Civic Type R FK2 TCR 13 1:03.859 2:01.514 31
29 18 Paul IP Kung Ching Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR 13 1:19.878 2:01.544 32
R 123 Daniel LLOYD Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type R FK8 TCR 11 DNF 1:58.194 6
R 8 Luca ENGSTLER M1RA Motorsport Hyundai i30 N TCR 11 DNF 1:58.400 16
R 45 Gianni MORBIDELLI WestCoast Racing Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR 10 DNF 1:58.933 7
R 30 Luca FILIPPI BRC Racing Team Hyundai i30 N TCR 1 DNF 3:16.857 14
TCR Europe points deficit after Round 13
Graphic: TouringCars.Net