Tom Coronel switches to Audi RS 3 LMS for FIA WTCR 2020
Huizen, March 5, 2020 – Tom Coronel, the driver with the longest record in the highest global touring car championship, is again this year in the FIA World Touring Car Cup (WTCR), whose season will take place over the last weekend of April. starts in Hungary. For the 47-year-old Gooi driver, it will be his 31st season in motorsport, which is accompanied by an important change: although he remains loyal to the Belgian team Comtoyou Racing, when choosing the competition car he switches to an Audi. RS 3 LMS. The color scheme will remain identical to that with which Coronel drove last season.
“A different car indeed, but the same team as last year”, opens Tom Coronel. “I value riding with the same team for a longer period of time. Last year there was definitely a click with Comtoyou Racing. The cooperation went well from both sides and now we have made the switch to the Audi. The team also has long experience with this brand. Audi is not entirely new to me either: in 2001 I already drove an Audi during the 24 Hours of Le Mans. In October last year, at the TCR Spa 500, Audi expressed its interest in working with the team and me as a driver. That gave a good feeling, because they also participate in this story in several ways. Technically, this Audi definitely resembles last year's Cupra, but after my first tests in Spain on this year's new Goodyear tires, the RS 3 really surprised me. He differs on important details and that gives me a good feeling. Furthermore, we already know that we will do a lot of testing before the first race weekend to fine-tune the car.”
In addition to the new tires mentioned, more will change in 2020. Tom: “Last year I rode with start number 50 to put my loyal sponsor DHL in the spotlight, because of DHL's 50th anniversary. This year I will start under number 31. That is 30 plus 1, which is the thirty years that I have been racing and the year that has now started. I also delved into my racing past with the necessary people. When you include the predecessors of the current WTCR (ETCC, WTCC) and go back to my race with the Carly Motors BMW in Estoril and add the European TCR races, the total comes to 413 races. There is also no one who has been driving this championship for so long. If you also add my other touring car races, such as those with the Citroën AX, DTCC BMW and more, the total comes to 484 races. That, with the twenty WTCR races next season, will certainly bring the total this year above 500 races in a touring car. In short, a unique anniversary, which we will certainly celebrate this year.”
“Another novelty for 2020 is that we will again have one qualifying session in the WTCR and that there will be two races per weekend instead of three races so far. Basically as it was before in the WTCC”, continues Tom. “I think it's definitely a good development for the non-factory teams like us. In recent years, we sometimes ran out of time to get everything done properly and, above all, on time. I think that with this adjustment it will improve again. The result is that we also have fewer tires (from 22 to 18; ed.) available per race weekend.”
He continues: “Of course it is a pity that the ten circuits we visit with the WTCR this year are missing our own Zandvoort. I get it, because there's so much going on there right now, but I really hope we'll be here again next year. Furthermore, the season will start a little later this year and we will start at the Hungaroring in Hungary. What I'm super happy with is the challenging Nürburgring-Nordschleife. That will be the second race of this season. Super cool! I remember the returned Salzburgring from my WTCC time and I am certainly looking forward to it. New this year is Inje Speedium in South Korea. Always good when there are new circuits in the title race. All in all, we'll be visiting ten circuits and I'm definitely looking forward to getting started again!"
Tom Coronel's performances can also be followed in 2020 via Eurosport during the regular broadcasts of the race weekends and of course also on RTL 7. “With WTCR, or World Tom Coronel Racing, my races in the different classes can be followed. I will also use the TomCam to make the necessary reports behind the scenes of racing.”
Provisional calendar FIA WTCR 2020
April 24 – 26 Hungaroring, Hungary
May 20 – 23 Nürburgring, Germany
June 5 – 7 Slovakia Ring, Slovakia
June 19 – 21 Vila Real, Portugal
July 3 – 5 Aragon, Spain
July 24 – 26 Salzburgring, Austria
September 18 – 15 Ningbo, China
October 16 – 18 Inje, South Korea
November 19 – 22 Macau, Macau
Dec 10 – 13 Sepang, Malaysia
Tom Coronel will be supported in the 2020 FIA WTCR by: DHL, Eurol Lubricants, Tricorp Workwear, ERU Prestige Kaas voor Kerels, Ireckonu, Bouwgroep Dijkstra Draisma, Intrax Suspension, 4.Brands, ASC Group, FEBO, P1 racewear, Super-B, CM and Copernica.