Norbert Michelisz ‘needs to capitalise’ on strong starting position

BRC Racing’s Norbert Michelisz is hoping to get his FIA World Touring Car Cup season kick-started on Sunday, after the Hyundai driver secured third on the grid at his home round in Hungary.

Michelisz qualified his Hyundai Elantra N in third for the second race on Sunday, three tenths of a second behind pole-sitter Rob Huff.

Cyan Racing’s Santiago Urrutia edged out Michelisz for second on the grid by less than half a tenth of a second.

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Given that Michelisz currently sits 14th in the drivers’ standings, he is hoping to score big points in the two races at the Hungaroring, in an effort to close the gap to points leader Jean-Karl Vernay, who has more than double as many points.

The Hungarian is hoping that his home support will give him the advantage, as he seeks to emulate a home victory which he last enjoyed in 2015.

“To be honest, like Santi, you are always confident, especially if it’s your home event because I know this circuit, I know the tricks,” said Michelisz. “I was quite sure I could deliver a good job.

“But in the end, we realised in free practice one it is going to be a bit more difficult than we expected.

“We made a big jump with the car between FP1 and FP2, and then everything started to come together.

“We did another good step in terms of set-up for qualifying. It was just one of those days where the car and also the circuit gave me confidence, and on top of this having supporters here made it a very nice day for me.

“Sometimes you don’t expect things that come but still I think the most important part will be tomorrow because my aim will be on the podium, for sure, but also to score a lot of points because this year somehow things didn’t turn out very good for me.

“I just need to capitalise on my starting position. My target is to do two good aggressive but also clean races because in the end the championship is always in the back of your head.”

Michelisz added that he was happy to see Huff back on pole, and he added that even if he can’t fight for the win he would be pleased with a podium result.

“Honestly, I’m very happy for Rob and congrats to him,” added Michelisz. “OK, I understand he has a light car, but to do this lap time, it’s not only about the car.

“I know his capabilities, more or less what he can deliver, so I’m sure a big part was thanks to him that carried the team and also himself to P1.

“In the end, if I can get on the podium tomorrow for sure I would be happy, no matter what the other positions will be.

“But to be honest, nothing against you Santi, but I really hope that Rob can… I mean, have a clean race!”

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