Lukoil Craft-Bamboo Racing are hoping for a return to form for the penultimate round of the TCR International Series season in Zhejiang, China. After enduring a tough weekend in Thailand, the trio of drivers are focused on turning their performance around to claw back some points in the drivers’ and teams’ championship before the final round of the season in Dubai. Zhejiang is a new track for the team and all three drivers will have to work hard early on to get adjusted to the 3.2km, 16-turn circuit.
Pepe Oriola is still in with a shot at the drivers’ championship but it will be imperative for the #74 driver to have a successful weekend in Zhejiang if he is to have any chance at fighting for the title in Dubai. Oriola proved his competitiveness in Buriram last month with a strong performance that had him lined up for the podium before a very untimely mechanical issue ruled him out. If Oriola can muster the same performance this weekend, he will surely be a threat to the current series’ leaders and may be able to position himself for a final championship push in Dubai.
Daniel Lloyd is looking to bounce back in Zhejiang and return to the podium form that he brilliantly demonstrated in Germany. With the team working hard on further development of the SEAT Leon since Buriram, the #17 driver is confident that he can gain an edge over the rest of the field. With no success ballast to contend with this weekend and all drivers contesting the circuit for the first time, Lloyd is determined to start closing out his first TCR International Series season with some strong results.
James Nash is hoping to repeat the pace he showed during qualifying in Thailand in the hopes of snatching another front row start. Nash intends on going one better though this weekend to claim his first pole position of the season, which will put him in prime contention for a shot at victory. With the technical nature of the Zhejiang circuit likely to suit the SEAT Leon, the #54 driver will be one to watch when the lights go out on Sunday.
Zhejiang Schedule GMT +8
Saturday 7th October
10:00 - 10:30 TCR International Series Free Practice 1
12:00 – 12:30 TCR International Series Free Practice 2
15.30 - 15.50 TCR International Series Qualifying Session (Q1)
15.55 - 16.05 TCR International Series Qualifying Session (Q2)
Sunday 8th October
14.30 - 15.00 TCR International Series Race 1 (19 laps Standing Start - 60km)
16.05 - 16.35 TCR International Series Race 2 (19 laps Standing Start - 60km)
Richard Coleman, CEO of Craft-Bamboo Racing
“The whole team is looking forward to the race in Zhejiang after a disappointment at the last round. All the drivers are fired up and it is a circuit that we should be competitive at but I also think the VW Golf will be competitive here and it will be a close race as always.”
Daniel Lloyd, #17
“The team has done a lot of hard work since Buriram, we have looked at a lot of data and we have a few things to try in Friday’s practice. Our main aim is to sort that out; obviously it is a new circuit, so it will make it more of a level playing field. It looks like a pretty technical circuit, so hopefully that will work in our favour. Our car hasn’t been the strongest in a straight line, so I’m hoping a tight and twisty track will help us. We will be looking for a good result and to score points for our teams’ championship campaign!”
James Nash, #54
“I am looking forward to getting back in the car on this new circuit, which is really exciting. It is a shame we are not in the ultimate title fight but that is not down to the team, my driving or SEAT. We can now focus on results and wins so we can come to this event with a different attitude.”
Pepe Oriola, #74
“I am really motivated for the second last round in Zhejiang. I usually adapt pretty quickly to new circuits, so that will be an advantage for me and I hope to score as many points as I can as well as helping out Lukoil Craft-Bamboo fight for the teams’ championship.”