Andreas Pfister finishes in 6th place after tough duels at the Hungaroring
Hungaroring. After the opening two races of the European Touring Car Championship (FIA ETCC) in the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza in Italy, the talented Touring Car drivers only had a short break during which to draw their breath: the next two races at the Hungaroring were already coming up on the 12th to the 14th of May 2017. The Hungarian Formula 1 circuit is not only known for its demanding 4.381 km course, but also for the fact that it attracts tens of thousands of frenetic Touring Car fans to the track on the outskirts of Budapest.
“I really like coming to the Hungaroring because the “in-field” has a lot of curves and this suits me and it’s so much fun driving in front of so many fans. The crowds here in Hungary are really enthusiastic and more and more fans come to the track every year. Our goal this race weekend is to get closer to the leaders once again, even though we have to contend with being at a technical disadvantage compared to our competition. But one thing is for sure, I will be giving everything I have to finish as high up the field as I can and collect further Championship points”, said the 29 year old Touring Car driver Andreas Pfister on the eve of the race weekend.
Both races gave all fans of Touring Car motor sport full value for their money with highly competitive racing and some “exchanges of paint”!
Upward trend during qualifying thanks to an excellent team performance
The Pfister-Racing Team was really put to the test during the important 30-minute qualifying session to determine the starting positions on the grid: Shortly after Andreas Pfister left the pit lane with the aim of recording some good lap times in qualifying, a screw broke on the back wheel suspension, which forced him back into the pit lane. “I had to fight against sudden oversteer and I was lucky that I was able to get back to the pit lane with the technical defect on the back wheel suspension. The team then had only about 10 stress-filled minutes to try and repair the defect so that I could get back out to record a fast lap time. Thanks to their fantastic teamwork, the guys were able to repair my car in record time and I was able to get back out onto the track. In the closing stages of qualifying, I was able to secure 6th place on the grid, which is a good starting position. And I would like to say a big thank you to my team once again – that was fantastic work!” commended Pfister.
A sudden handicap meant that Andreas Pfister had to pull out all the stops during the race.
After the race stewards penalized another driver with a starting-position penalty, Andreas Pfister started the first race from fifth place on the grid. During the sprint to the first corner, the German reacted well making up two places take up third position. “The start of the first race went to plan and despite the caliber of the drivers in the field, I was able to push forward into third. But then in that moment I noticed that something wasn’t right with the car, the front differential had decided to call it a day, and this meant that the wheels on the front axle spun through. This put a lot of pressure on the tires and I was forced into the pit lane with tire damage shortly before the end of the race. This was frustrating of course, but it was then all about making the best out of the circumstance for the second race!”
Andreas Pfister said that the second race at the Hungaroring “was one of the hardest races of my career”.
Because the differential could not be repaired in time for the second race, this meant that Andreas Pfister had to get the most he possibly could out of the car during the second race:
“I was better able to get used to the significant “wheel spins” on the front axle and adapt my driving style accordingly. I was able to match my competitors speed and defend my position in the hard-fought duels. That was definitely one of the most difficult races of my career and considering the circumstances I am really happy about 6th place and that I was able to pick up further Championship points. This result is like a podium finish for me and I would like to say a big thank you to my team (Alois Pfister, Kai Denner, Alfred Hutzel), as well as the many fans at home and at the circuit for all the fingers crossed!
We are now looking forward to our home race in the European Championship in Germany that will take place at the legendary Nürburgring-Nordschleife from the 25th to the 27th of May 2017 as part of the ADAC Zurich 24-hour race. More than 200,000 spectators are expected and all the action will be broadcast on TV as usual on EUROSPORT. We are looking forward to seeing you at the circuit!” said a Andreas Pfister who is looking forward to the battle.
O V E R A L L R A N K I N G S Top 10
European Touring Car Championship (FIA ETCC)
after 4 of 12 competitive races
- Christjohannes Schreiber (SUI) Honda Civic SEQ 41 points
- Petr Fulin (CZE) SEAT Leon SEQ 25 points
- Norbert Nagy (HUN) SEAT Leon SEQ 23 points
- Peter Rikli (SUI) HONDA Civic SEQ 21 points
- Igor Stefanovski (MAZ) SEAT Leon SEQ 15 points
- Szolt Sabo (HUN) SEAT Leon SEQ 14 points
- Alexandr Artemyev (KAZ) SEAT Leon SEQ 8 Points
- Andreas Pfister (GER) SEAT Leon DSG 7 points
- Mladen Lalusic (SRB) SEAT Leon SEQ 6 point
- Plamen Kralev (BUL) Audi S3 SEQ 3 points
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Photos: Petr Fryba