Tom Coronel leads the way in opening TCR Europe practice at Zandvoort

Tom Coronel topped the times in the first TCR Europe practice session of the weekend at Zandvoort in The Netherlands, with the Comtoyou Racing driver 0.168 seconds ahead of team-mate Dušan Borković.

Coronel went to the top of the times in the opening half of the session, initially with a lap of 1:45.573 before improving to 1:45.476 in the last ten minutes.

His time stood for the remainder of the session, despite fellow Audi driver Borković coming to within two tenths on his best lap set just over five minutes from the end, before the session ended under a red flag with only a few seconds left when Evgenii Leonov clipped a tyre stack at Turn 12.

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Franco Girolami was the leading Honda driver in third, just under three tenths off the pace, ahead of the best of the Sébastien Loeb Racing Hyundai Elantras of Dutch local Niels Langeveld in fourth, just over half a second off the pace. Langeveld had briefly been fastest before he was demoted in the middle of the session.

Nicolas Baert ensured that the Audis looked strong early on by putting the third Comtoyou Audi in fifth, ahead of the first of the Brutal Fish Racing Hondas of Jack Young in sixth. The Northern Irishman was the last driver to be within a second of the pace.

Viktor Davidovski was seventh in his Honda, ahead of the best CUPRA of Evgenii Leonov in eighth. Leonov is the sole representative for Volcano Motorsport this weekend, as regular team-mate Mikel Azcona is competing in the inaugural ETCR series at Vallelunga.

The top ten was completed by the Hyundai i30 of Mat’o Homola and another Audi of Klim Gavrilov.

Mehdi Bennani, who stands a great chance of securing the points lead this weekend in Azcona’s absence, was only 14th fastest.

The Peugeots of Jimmy and Teddy Clairet, who had won both races at Circuit Paul Ricard last time out, also lacked pace in first practice, ending the session in 15th and 18th respectively, over two seconds adrift of the pace. The latter only completed four laps of running.

Newcomer Gustav Birch propped up the timesheets in a third 308 TCR, the Dane 3.6 seconds slower than Coronel.

Second practice is scheduled to get underway at 16:40 CEST (15:40 BST).

Session results

POS NO NAT DRIVER ENTRANT CAR LAPS TIME GAP
1 32 Tom CORONEL Comtoyou Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 1:45.476
2 162 Dušan BORKOVIĆ Comtoyou Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 14 1:45.644 0.168
3 72 Franco GIROLAMI PSS Racing Team Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 13 1:45.752 0.276
4 10 Niels LANGEVELD Sébastien Loeb Racing Hyundai Elantra N TCR 11 1:45.999 0.523
5 8 Nicolas BAERT Comtoyou Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 15 1:46.191 0.715
6 62 Jack YOUNG Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 12 1:46.282 0.806
7 110 Viktor DAVIDOVSKY PSS Racing Team Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 13 1:46.648 1.172
8 16 Evgenii LEONOV Volcano Motorsport CUPRA Leon Competición TCR 14 1:46.653 1.177
9 70 Mat’o HOMOLA Janík Motorsport Hyundai i30 N TCR 12 1:46.692 1.216
10 14 Klim GAVRILOV VRC-Team Audi RS3 LMS TCR 13 1:46.707 1.231
11 26 Isidro CALLEJAS Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 14 1:46.786 1.310
12 24 Jáchym GALÁŠ Janík Motorsport Hyundai i30 N TCR 15 1:47.090 1.614
13 17 Martin RYBA Brutal Fish Racing Team Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 13 1:47.199 1.723
14 250 Mehdi BENNANI Sébastien Loeb Racing Hyundai Elantra N TCR 14 1:47.392 1.916
15 21 Jimmy CLAIRET Team Clairet Sport Peugeot 308 TCR 9 1:47.606 2.130
16 25 Sami TAOUFIK Sébastien Loeb Racing Hyundai Elantra N TCR 11 1:48.303 2.827
17 44 Felice JELMINI Sébastien Loeb Racing Hyundai Elantra N TCR 13 1:48.378 2.902
18 20 Teddy CLAIRET Team Clairet Sport Peugeot 308 TCR 4 1:48.396 2.920
19 77 Sylvain PUSSIER Team Clairet Sport CUPRA TCR 15 1:48.510 3.034
20 66 Gilles COLOMBANI Team Clairet Sport CUPRA TCR 15 1:48.953 3.477
21 11 Gustav BIRCH Brian Madsen Sport Peugeot 308 TCR 15 1:49.103 3.627
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