Patrick Sing wins his debut in TCR Eastern Europe

German driver Patrick Sing is the winner of the first race at Red Bull Ring. The racing spectacle had a lot of ups and downs for several drivers, and the podium ceremony featured three new faces.

Milenko Vuković and Petr Semerád started from the first row. While Vuković had a great getaway from his pole position, a really poor start by Petr Semerád meant that he lost a couple of places. Patrick Sing, starting from fourth position, moved up to second place, behind Vuković and in front of Petr Čížek.

Vuković had been leading until the second lap, then he had a problem with his Renault and had to retire. Sing, who typically drives in TCR Germany, inherited the lead, but there was no breathing room for him. Right behind his Hyundai was Petr Čížek, who had enough speed to keep up with the leader.

Petr Semerád was gaining places after a bad start and soon overtook his team boss, Václav Janík, advancing to follow the leading duo. A close battle between Čížek’s Cupra and Semerád’s Hyundai was very entertaining for spectators in the stands. In the sixth lap, Semerád tried to out-brake Čížek in the sharp third turn, but his left rear suspension collapsed and Semerád had to retire.

Čížek was then following race leader Sing closely, but, at the same time, had to be careful of Janík behind his back. The leading trio finished the race by a close margin, within one and half seconds of each other. Sing kept the lead and won his debut in TCR Eastern Europe. It’s necessary to point out that he raced at Red Bull Ring two weeks ago in TCR Germany, so he was well-prepared for this weekend with TCR Eastern Europe.

Petr Čížek was really happy about his first second-place finish. Václav Janík came home in third place, making it his first podium finish in his third race with a TCR car.

The winner of the Hungaroring event, Bartosz Groszek, finished fourth with his Audi, and in fifth was Sebastian Steibel with a Cupra. Levente Losonczy brought his Alfa Romeo into sixth place, and in seventh was Tomasz Rzepecki with a VW Golf. Newcomer Vít Smejkal, with last season’s winning Cupra, scored his first points in his first race. Nineth was Radim Adámek with an Audi and tenth was Sanel Cehic, also driving an Audi.

Carol Wittke, who held fourth position until late in the race, was classified in last position, but he had to retire with three laps to go and joined quite a long list of retired drivers, including Milovan Vesnić, Milenko Vuković, Žarko Knego, Petr Semerád, and Franjo Kovač.

Patrick Sing also won the Junior category in front of Levente Losonczy and Tomasz Rzepecki. The TCR Eastern Europe Trophy was won by Patrick Sing again, second was Bartosz Groszek, and third was Sebastian Steibel.

The starting grid for tomorrow’s race will be in reverse order from 9th position, which means that Radim Adámek and Vít Smejkal are going to start from the first row.

Race results
TCR Eastern Europe – Race 1