Vallelunga, Race stage 1: Konukoǧlu/Brigliadori stay at the front

Turgut Konukoǧlu and Eric Brigliadori are the race leaders after stage one in Vallelunga: the opening 55 minutes plus one lap of the second round of the season saw the Audi RS3 LMS #2 of TEXACO Team AMS convert pole position into the race lead thanks to a great performance by its two drivers. The series promoted by Mauricio Slaviero provided a great spectacle in the first half of the race at the Italian racetrack, with thirteen drivers ready to fight as the series comes on Italian soil for the first time.

Thanks to a great start by Brigliadori, the #2 car was able to build a gap over its rivals right at the start, leading the other two Audis of Filippo Barberi and Sandro Pelatti. Brigliadori then opened a 20-second gap over the rest of the field, getting to the pit stop window without any issues. The first car to dive into the pits was the Gen-1 Audi RS3 of Pinar/Özen, with the latter driving in the opening half of the stage after running in fourth place; soon after, the two DSG new entries of RC Motorsport and Brothers in Arms entered the pit lane, with the two Cupra TCR DSGs pitting halfway through the race. Unfortunately for the latter, Gentili was found to have gone over the white line with his entire car at the exit of the pit lane, thus earning a drive through penalty that he served the following lap. Once again, TEXACO Team AMS tried a different strategy with the #4 Audi RS3 DSG of Kaçan/Okyay – waiting to make their pit stop and therefore briefly leading the race as Brigliadori pitted from first position. Ultimately, Okyay conceded the lead back to the sister car of Konukoǧlu/Brigliadori, exiting the pit lane in fifth after a short trip to the gravel trap on their in lap.

The second half of the stage saw Konukoǧlu maintain the gap created by his teammate, ultimately crossing the line in first place and securing the lead after the maiden part of the race. Behind him, the Italian duo of Fossati/Barberi was able to fight off Sandro Pelatti for second, with only seven seconds separating the two cars; however, the gap was then reduced following a five-second time penalty awarded to Fossati for going over the white line on pit lane exit. Behind them, Pinar and Özen finished stage one in fourth position in the overall standings, while also leading the Gen-1 class. In the DSG category, it was once again Kaçan/Okyay who took the flag first, finishing in fifth overall and beating RC Motorsport’s Paolino/Rodio to the line. Lastly, the two Gentili brothers lead the Cupra TCR DSG of Brothers in Arms to seventh place overall, and to the final step of the provisional DSG podium.

The result of the first leg will make up the grid for stage two, which is scheduled to take place on Sunday, May 19th, at 11:30 local time. The final part of the race will be broadcasted live by TCR TV’s YouTube channel as well as on MS Motor TV, on Sky’s channel number 229, with the commentary of Daniele Spadi.

2024 CALENDAR

28th APRIL

BALATON PARK

19th MAY

VALLELUNGA

22nd JUNE

MISANO

25th AUGUST

SLOVAKIARING

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