‘Worst qualifying’ of his WTCR career motivates Santiago Urrutia ahead of race day

Heading into this event, Santiago Urrutia was a driver on a mission. The young Uruguayan won the previous round of the FIA World Touring Car Cup at the Hungaroring, and as such arrived in the Czech Republic with just a two-point deficit to overcome if he wanted to overhaul the championship lead.

Indeed, after showing promise last season, Urrutia has marked himself out as a potential lead driver for Cyan Racing – if not in 2021, then in the near future. 

However, the former Indy Lights star will have his work cut out if he is to continue that push for supremacy this weekend. Despite showing good form in practice, Urrutia wasn’t able to put a quick lap together in qualifying, and therefore will start both races from fifteenth. Meanwhile, championship leader – and team-mate – Yann Ehrlacher will be starting the feature race from third.

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“A really bad one for me,” Urrutia conceded. “I think it’s my worst qualifying in WTCR so I don’t really know what happened. 

“I mean we had the speed in practice and we did a few changes on the car for qualifying, and yeah, I’m P15 – so very bad. 

“This is racing, you’re going to have bad days and good days, so now we focus on tomorrow and try to maximise the bad qualifying [result] and get some points in the race.”

In truth, there have been very few bad days in TCR racing for Urrutia in recent times. In fact, just last month, he added another accolade to his C.V by winning the first ever TCR race in his home nation, as a guest driver in the TCR South America Series. 

He will be hard-pushed to pull off any sort of repeat result in the Czech Republic tomorrow however, but the Lynk & Co has generally looked like a strong car at Autodrom Most. With that in mind, Urrutia will no doubt be one to watch as he attempts to progress through the midfield.

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