Néstor Girolami all set for WTCC debut with Honda Racing team Sweden

Jun 17, 2015

Néstor Girolami all set for WTCC debut with Honda Racing team Sweden

Stockholm, June 17, 2015

This weekend marks round six of the 2015 FIA World Touring Car Championship, with Honda Racing team Sweden giving Argentinean Néstor Girolami his maiden world championship outing as the field travels to Slovakia.

Having thrived in stiff competition to lift the Argentine Súper TC2000 title in 2014, 26-year-old Girolami now makes his much-anticipated debut on the international touring car arena at the twisty Slovakia Ring on the outskirts of Bratislava.

Girolami’s preparations ahead of the event have included simulator work with the team in Gothenburg, as well as testing and data analysis at Honda WTCC partner JAS Motorsport’s premises in Italy.

Further to the Slovakian round, Girolami will also be in action for Honda Racing team Sweden on the streets of Vila Real, Portugal, later in the summer. The team’s regular driver, Sweden’s Rickard Rydell, will be back on duty for the remaining rounds of the campaign.

For team quotes ahead of round six of the 2015 WTCC campaign, please see next page.

FAST FACTS: SLOVAKIA

  •   The 5.9 km Slovakia Ring has staged WTCC events in 2012, 2013 and 2014. The circuit holds fond memories for Honda, with Gabriele Tarquini claiming the works team’s maiden WTCC victory at the venue in 2013. Tarquini also established the current lap record in the same year.
  •   Slovakia will be represented on the grid by 20-year-old Mato Homola this weekend. Making his WTCC debut on home soil, Homola will drive a Chevrolet Cruze TC1 for Campos Racing.
  •   Last year’s WTCC Race of Slovakia featured some atrocious weather conditions. The first race of the weekend was brought to a premature end amid torrential rain, while the second was cancelled altogether – a first in the history of the WTCC.
  •   Its location in the heart of Eastern Europe makes the Slovakia Ring a popular and accessible destination. The inauguralWTCC event in 2012 attracted a crowd of 25 000, rising to an impressive 38 000 the following year.ROUND 6
    WTCC Race of Slovakia | Slovakia RingCircuit DataLap length: 5.922 km Race distance: 2 ×11 lapsLap Records

    Race: Gabriele Tarquini (Castrol Honda Civic), 2m12.918s (163.60 kph), 28/04/2013 Qualifying: José María López (Citroën C-Elysée WTCC), 2m03.912s (172.05 kph), 10/05/2014

TEAM QUOTES
Néstor Girolami (driver)

”I am hugely excited for this weekend. It is my biggest opportunity so far and I really want to thank Honda Racing team Sweden and the WTCC for supporting me in this. I have never driven the car before, however, so I will have to take it step by step. First practice on Friday will be all about just learning the track, the car and the championship in general, and I will then start pushing a bit more on Saturday. I hope to be as ready as possible for qualifying and then to finish both races on Sunday. I feel well prepared having worked with the team in Sweden and JAS Motorsport in Italy, and I can’t wait to get out on track.”

Stefan Lindberg (sporting director)

”This is an exciting weekend for Honda Racing team Sweden. As a small Swedish privateer team, we are proud to have been entrusted the management of a delicate moment in Néstor’s promising career. Stepping into the international arena is no easy task, but – having spent quite some time with Néstor in Sweden over the last week – I have seen how dedicated and ambitious he actually is.

“We have done everything we possibly can to help prepare Néstor for his debut. Still, we need to remember that he is entirely new to the WTCC environment, and that we have had very little testing so far this year. We travel to Slovakia with realistic targets.”

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