With Yann Ehrlacher having retained a healthy lead in the points standings and Santiago Urrutia finishing on the podium in all three of today’s races, Cyan Racing will be leaving Motorland Aragón tonight full of positivity.
After a less than ideal qualifying session for the World Touring Car Cup (WTCR) points leader, strong damage limitation drives in the first two races of the day ensured that the Frenchman had actually extended his advantage ahead of the Sunday’s final race.
That trend looked set to continue until his Lynk & Co suddenly fell victim to power issues in race three, though Ehrlacher was at least able to nurse his car home in twelfth.
With a 26-point lead over Honda’s Esteban Guerrieri, this year’s drivers’ title is very much Ehrlacher’s to lose, while Cyan Racing themselves have a strong grip on the teams’ standings as well.
Honda’s plight at Aragón this weekend will serve as music to the ears of everyone at Cyan Racing, as the season finale will now also be held at the circuit instead of Adria as originally planned.
As shown this weekend, the team’s Lynk & Co 03s are far better suited to the Spanish circuit than Münnich Motorsport’s fleet of Civic Type R’s, though admittedly the gap may well close next time out depending on changes to the cars’ respective compensation weights.
That aside, Cyan Racing will head into the title-deciding round with not only a points advantage, but a likely car advantage too. There is plenty, therefore, for the team to be confident about.
Away from the championship battles, it was also a very strong day for the team’s lower-placed drivers in the points standings.
After a mediocre year up to this point, Thed Björk found his spark again in Spain this weekend and went on to take his first victory of the season in race three.
“Finally… a victory!” Björk exclaimed. “It was my first one this season and I fought really hard for it, it feels great.
“We did quite a good weekend anyway, we are sad that Yann didn’t quite score the points that we wanted, but everyone is fighting really hard for this. One more weekend and then we decide the champion, and you know, we want it to be us.”
Björk’s Uruguayan team-mate arguably had the best weekend though. After reaching the top-five shootout in qualifying for the second time this year, Urrutia went on to finish on the podium in all three races at the Spanish circuit.
The 24-year-old has impressed with flashes of pace throughout the year, but this weekend really stands out as a statement of what’s to come from him in future seasons.
“What can I say, I’m super happy with three podiums,” Urrutia said. “It was good for the championship, and now we have to focus on the last three races.
“It is very tight in the championship, so now we need to make a good strategy and everything, so yeah, thank you to all my boys who worked on the car this weekend.”
Urrutia and the rest of the Cyan Racing team will return to Motorland Aragón on the weekend of 14/15 November, with both drivers and teams championships firmly in their sights.