PWR Racing’s Mikel Azcona was handed a post-race 30-second penalty for contact with Münnich Motorsport’s Esteban Guerrieri in the season finale of the FIA World Touring Car Cup in Sepang, which cost the latter the title.
Azcona was battling for the lead of the race with Guerrieri in race three in Malaysia, when the pair made contact in the run up to Turn 12.
The incident pitched Guerrieri onto the grass, which in turn filled his radiator vents with grass, whilst Azcona moved into the race lead.
The blockage at the front of Guerrieri’s car then caused his engine to overheat, losing him power and dropping him down the order before he eventually pitted under a safety car to have the blockage cleared.
By that stage two thirds of the race had elapsed, and Azcona, who then dropped to second, went on to claim a podium finish, whilst Norbert Michelisz secured the outright drivers’ title.
The stewards deemed Azcona to be at fault for the clash and gave him a 30-second time penalty, dropping the Spaniard to 14th.
“I’m really sorry for Esteban, what’s happened, I didn’t want this finish, for sure,” explained Azcona after the race.
“At the same time, he was battling for the championship, but I had [Johan] Kristoffersson behind me, so I had to battle for my rookie championship.
“It’s my first year and I don’t want to lose. I didn’t want this situation, it wasn’t on purpose, I didn’t crash into him on purpose.
“I do not like this situation; I am sorry Esteban and I cannot say anything more.”
Gabriele Tarquini was the only other driver penalised after the race, with the Italian handed a 30-second time penalty for a safety car procedure violation, dropping him from sixth to 18th.
Revised race result
|1||14||Johan KRISTOFFERSSON||SLR Volkswagen||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||14 LAPS||2:33.460||22|
|2||31||Kevin CECCON||Team Mulsanne||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||14||2.182||2:34.096||7|
|3||22||Frédéric VERVISCH||Comtoyou Team Audi Sport||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||14||4.296||2:33.668||8|
|4||5||Norbert MICHELISZ||BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||9.297||2:35.392||1|
|5||29||Néstor GIROLAMI||ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport||Honda Civic Type R TCR||14||13.150||2:33.291||9|
|6||18||Tiago MONTEIRO||KCMG||Honda Civic Type R TCR||14||14.737||2:35.797||16|
|7||11||Thed BJÖRK||Cyan Racing Lynk & Co||Lynk & Co 03 TCR||14||17.308||2:36.194||19|
|8||33||Benjamin LEUCHTER||SLR Volkswagen||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||17.807||2:35.551||21|
|9||12||Rob HUFF||SLR VW Motorsport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||19.279||2:35.934||26|
|10||69||Jean-Karl VERNAY||Leopard Racing Team Audi Sport||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||14||21.373||2:35.083||20|
|11||100||Yvan MULLER||Cyan Racing Lynk & Co||Lynk & Co 03 TCR||14||24.479||2:36.566||13|
|12||111||Andy PRIAULX||Cyan Performance Lynk & Co||Lynk & Co 03 TCR||14||25.776||2:36.256||27|
|13||37||Daniel HAGLÖF||PWR Racing||CUPRA TCR||14||26.418||2:37.096||24|
|14||96||Mikel AZCONA||PWR Racing||CUPRA TCR||14||32.026||2:33.753||3|
|15||15||Hafizh SYAHRIN Bin Abdullah||Hyundai Team Engstler||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||36.567||2:39.089||28|
|16||68||Yann EHRLACHER||Cyan Performance Lynk & Co||Lynk & Co 03 TCR||14||36.827||2:39.671||18|
|17||25||Mehdi BENNANI||SLR VW Motorsport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||14||37.687||2:39.204||23|
|18||1||Gabriele TARQUINI||BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||39.905||2:34.868||5|
|19||27||Mitchell CHEAH Min Jie||Hyundai Team Engstler||Hyundai i30 N TCR||14||40.223||2:39.736||30|
|20||10||Niels LANGEVELD||Comtoyou Team Audi Sport||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||14||43.171||2:40.436||11|
|21||65||Douglas KHOO Kok Hui||Viper Niza Racing||CUPRA TCR||14||56.247||2:43.476||29|
|22||86||Esteban GUERRIERI||ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport||Honda Civic Type R TCR||14||59.437||2:32.050||2|
|23||55||Ma QING HUA||Team Mulsanne||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||14||1:50.645||2:39.704||10|
|R||38||João Paulo Lima DE OLIVEIRA||KC Motorgroup||Honda Civic Type R TCR||10||DNF||2:38.245||25|
|R||52||Gordon SHEDDEN||Leopard Racing Team Audi Sport||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||7||DNF||2:38.691||15|
|R||50||Tom CORONEL||Comtoyou DHL Team CUPRA Racing||CUPRA TCR||5||DNF||2:44.533||17|
|R||8||Augusto FARFUS||BRC Hyundai N LUKOIL Racing Team||Hyundai i30 N TCR||0||DNF||N/A||6|
|R||9||Attila TASSI||KCMG||Honda Civic Type R TCR||0||DNF||N/A||12|
|R||21||Aurélien PANIS||Comtoyou DHL Team CUPRA Racing||CUPRA TCR||0||DNF||N/A||14|
|NS||88||Nicky CATSBURG||BRC Hyundai N LUKOIL Racing Team||Hyundai i30 N TCR||–||DNS||N/A||–|