Norbert secures the 2023 title
We are celebrating another title win in Macau, where Elantra N TCR driver Norbert has secured the inaugural Kumho TCR World Tour for Drivers following a strong performance at the final round of the season.
The result marks the sixth title for our customers at the highest level of TCR competition and underscores the Elantra N TCR’s position at the top of the global touring car category.
“I am thrilled to have won the inaugural Kumho TCR World Tour season,” smiled Norbert. “It has been a long season, but we started and ended it in the best way possible.”
Our President Sean Kim said, “For the Elantra N TCR to have won international touring car competitions for two successive years is a great indication of the performance of the car, talent of the drivers, customer team, and the hard work of the Customer Racing department in Alzenau.”
Down to the wire
Norbert arrived at the Macau Circuito da Guia just one point adrift from the lead of the standings. His weekend got off a great start, finishing both free practice sessions in the top three before clinching the final pole position of the season. He re-took the lead of the standings with a six-point gap to second.
He extended that lead to 18-points on Saturday after a lights-to-flag victory in Race 1, his fourth win of the season. In Race 2, he managed his Elantra N TCR superbly, avoiding any trouble and banking an eighth-place finish – the result he needed to confirm the title.
“Without the work of BRC and the Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing department, this would not have been possible, and I can’t thank them enough,” added Norbert.
By winning the Kumho TCR World Tour, Norbert adds a second championship success alongside his 2019 WTCR drivers’ crown.
“It is a proud moment for another customer to win in the top level of touring car competition,” said our Team Principal, Cyril. “Norbert has driven extremely well this year and deserves this second title to his name as a reward after what has been a close season of racing.”
Team-mate Mikel secured himself fifth place in the Kumho TCR World Tour for Drivers despite a strong weekend in Macau. He was on the pace, but a grid penalty after qualifying dropped him from second to fifth on the Race 1 grid. A lack of overtaking opportunities around the street circuit meant he finished the season with a fourth and ninth place finish.
“It’s been a very emotional weekend in Macau. As a team we came with the target to win the title with Norbi,” explained Mikel. “From first practice the Elantra N TCR was very competitive, and it gave me the confidence to push and get close to the walls on this very challenging track.”
BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse also fielded a third Elantra N TCR in Macau, which was driven by Customer Racing Junior Driver Marco. Macau was a new circuit for the Italian driver, and he impressed after progressing into the second stage of qualifying. A hit to the barrier meant he was unable to improve his time and a new engine meant he started Race 1 from 17th. He made up six places to finish 11th before completing the weekend with a top ten finish behind the pair of full-season Elantra N TCR drivers.
A strong season
The pace of the Elantra N TCR and the results accumulated across the season, gave BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse third place in the final Kumho TCR World Tour for Teams standings. The outfit amassed three pole positions, nine fastest laps, 13 podium visits and five wins across the 20-race season, three of which were 1-2 finishes in Portimão, Vallelunga and La Pedrera.