José Manuel Sapag will make his début in the FIA World Touring Car Cup at the Hungaroring this weekend, racing a Hyundai i30 N TCR entered by Target Competition.
Sapag, 25, has added the WTCR date to his end-of-season TCR Europe campaign, in which the Argentine is already contesting the final three rounds of the series with the Italian team.
Following in the footsteps of compatriots Esteban Guerrieri and Néstor Girolami, Sapag is also planning a second WTCR entry at the season finale in Italy next month.
“For sure it’s going to be a challenging weekend because I’ve only driven on the Hungaroring on the simulator, never in real life,” said Sapag, who is a race winner in TC2000 in Argentina.
“I have some experience of the Hyundai now but I will need to get used to the track and I know it will be difficult.
“Also, the level is very high in the WTCR so my objectives are going to be to adapt to the category and try to be on pace with the other drivers.
“I also want to start to know WTCR and improve in every session and be better every time I go out on track and be closer to the other drivers.”
This year, Sapag graduated to the Súper TC2000 championship, after previous experience in TC2000. Last weekend in TCR Europe at Barcelona he finished in the points in both races in 12th and eighth respectively.
Sapag has previously raced against both Guerrieri and Girolami, and he is hoping that they can help him with his WTCR transition.
“I know them, we had a little go-kart race and they are nice guys,” Sapag said. “They are fast and in Argentina they were really good, also in WTCR. It’s nice to know them because they will hopefully give me some advice.
“I don’t want to predict any results because the level of WTCR is high but Súper TC2000 has a good level too.
“The cars are also front-wheel drive and have a lot of power and aero. They are tricky to drive and the car is very demanding.
“You have to be very precise with the car to be fast and that will help us in Europe when we race in front-wheel drive also.
“In Argentina the drivers make you fight and they put you on the limit. It’s a good category, it’s very intense and hard and I’m expecting the same in WTCR.”