Hondas make gains in second practice as Attila Tassi goes top

Liqui Moly Team Engstler’s Attila Tassi was the fastest driver in the second FIA World Touring Car Cup practice session on the Nürburgring Nordschleife, half a second ahead of Comtoyou Racing’s Mehdi Bennani.

Tassi hit the top of the times on his third and final flying lap on the 25.4 km circuit, marking a distinct change in fortunes for the Hondas after the day’s earlier session.

The Honda Civics are the only car carrying compensation weight – 40 kg of it – this weekend, following their success in Pau. In first practice, no Hondas featured in the top ten at all, but Tassi ended up as the quickest of all in second practice.

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The Hungarian’s lap time of 8 minutes 52.201 seconds was two and a half seconds faster than the pace in the earlier session.

Moroccan Mehdi Bennani was second quickest, the Audi driver being the only other person within a second of Tassi’s time.

Cyan Racing’s Yann Ehrlacher was third, and posted a time 1.1 seconds off the pace, having earlier set the benchmark in FP1.

Mikel Azcona once again found himself in fourth, the BRC Hyundai driver just under a second a half shy of Tassi’s lap time.

His team-mate Norbert Michelisz was fifth, ahead of the second Comtoyou Audi of Tom Coronel in sixth – despite the Dutchman enduring a high-speed slide over the dry grass towards the end of the session.

Having crashed into the barriers in the first session, Münnich Motorsport’s Esteban Guerrieri stayed out of trouble this time around, putting his Honda Civic in seventh, the last driver within two seconds of Tassi.

Thed Björk, just outside the top ten in FP1, put his Lynk & Co in eighth, whilst the top ten was completed by Comtoyou’s Nathanaël Berthon and Cyan Racing’s Yvan Muller.

Muller only completed two laps, having earlier picked up a puncture towards the end of the Nordschleife, after which he had to nurse his car back to the pits for new rubber. When he returned to the track he was able to put in a time good enough for tenth, 3.5 seconds adrift.

Gilles Magnus completed just one flying lap before the Belgian had a brush with the barriers in his Comtoyou Audi. Luckily, he was able to bring his car back to the pits, including after picking up a puncture due to the damage, but he took no further part in the session.

Qualifying is scheduled to take place at 13:00 CEST (12:00 BST) on Friday. Both races will then take place on Saturday, scheduled for 10:00 and 12:35 CEST respectively (09:00 and 11:35 BST).

Session result

POS NO NAT DRIVER ENTRANT CAR LAPS TIME GAP
1 9 Attila TASSI Liqui Moly Team Engstler Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR 3 8:52.201
2 25 Mehdi BENNANI Comtoyou Team Audi Sport Audi RS3 LMS TCR 2021 3 8:52.748 0.547
3 68 Yann EHRLACHER Cyan Racing Lynk & Co Lynk & Co 03 TCR 2 8:53.329 1.128
4 96 Mikel AZCONA BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse Hyundai Elantra N TCR 3 8:53.630 1.429
5 5 Norbert MICHELISZ BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse Hyundai Elantra N TCR 4 8:53.665 1.464
6 33 Tom CORONEL Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport Audi RS3 LMS TCR 2021 3 8:53.896 1.695
7 86 Esteban GUERRIERI ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR 3 8:54.160 1.959
8 11 Thed BJÖRK Cyan Performance Lynk & Co Lynk & Co 03 TCR 3 8:55.712 3.511
9 17 Nathanaël BERTHON Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport Audi RS3 LMS TCR 2021 3 8:55.715 3.514
10 100 Yvan MULLER Cyan Racing Lynk & Co Lynk & Co 03 TCR 2 8:55.790 3.589
11 18 Tiago MONTEIRO Liqui Moly Team Engstler Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR 3 8:58.511 6.310
12 79 Rob HUFF Zengő Motorsport Services Kft CUPRA Leon Competición TCR 2 8:58.816 6.615
13 55 MA Qing Hua Cyan Performance Lynk & Co Lynk & Co 03 TCR 3 8:59.345 7.144
14 99 Dániel NAGY Zengő Motorsport Services Kft CUPRA Leon Competición TCR 2 9:03.780 11.579
15 12 Santiago URRUTIA Cyan Performance Lynk & Co Lynk & Co 03 TCR 2 9:21.447 29.246
16 16 Gilles MAGNUS Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport Audi RS3 LMS TCR 2021 1 9:29.100 36.899
17 29 Néstor GIROLAMI ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR 2 9:38.729 45.628
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