Tiago Monteiro increased his FIA World Touring Car Championship lead with a superb victory for Honda at the Hungaroring.

Having started the Opening Race from second place, the Portuguese driver made a strong getaway to immediately move into a lead he would never lose.

His second victory of the season was also the 11th of his WTCC career and maintained his record of having finished on the podium at every round of the 2017 season so far.

Coupled with the vital points secured with a hard-fought fifth spot in the Main Race, Tiago’s advantage at the head of the Drivers’ Championship is now 38 points.

In contrast to Monteiro’s success, his Castrol Honda World Touring Car Team-mate Norbert Michelisz’s race day was an extremely frustrating one.

In front of 35,000 adoring raceday fans at his home circuit, the Hungarian started fifth in the Opening Race, and expertly climbed to third by the second corner.

Sadly, he was hit three times before half a lap had been completed and sustained a left-front puncture plus further left-side damage, which led to an early retirement.

Fourth place in the Main Race – two places ahead of his starting position – was a strong performance with which to end the day. Norbert lies eighth in the Drivers’ Championship.

Ryo Michigami recorded his first double-finish of the 2017 season; the Japanese driver battling hard to 11th place in the Opening Race and 13th in the Main event.

The day’s results mean Honda are second in the Manufacturers’ Championship, only 12 points away from the lead, with seven rounds remaining.

The next round takes place at the legendary Nurburgring Nordschleife in Germany on May 26-27.

Tiago Monteiro

Tiago Monteiro 18

“It’s been a very good day and I’m delighted to have my second win of the year. From second on the grid, the target was to take the victory and we’ve done this, despite carrying 80kg of compensation weight. It’s a nice points advantage to have so early in the season, but we’ve seen from what’s happened to Norbi at the past two races that you can lose big points very easily through no fault of your own. It’s very important to keep building on this at the next few rounds.”

Castrol Honda WTCC
Norbert Michelisz

Norbert Michelisz 5

“Another difficult race day. I made a great start, but unfortunately, for the second event in a row, I was hit hard by another driver three times and this ruined my race. Fourth place in the Main Race was OK, but ultimately, I’ve lost a lot of points and this means the championship will now be a very hard battle. I must say thank you to the fans who came here today to support me; I can’t tell you how much it means; it can really lift you when something bad happens. I’m just sorry I couldn’t give them the podium they wanted to see.”

Castrol Honda WTCC
Ryo Michigami

Ryo Michigami 34

“I’m pleased to finish both races, because after Morocco and Italy, I hadn’t really had very much in the way of track time in race conditions. Front-wheel-drive touring cars have inherent understeer and this is something I’m still learning to race with after spending most of my career in high-powered, rear-wheel-drive cars. This weekend gives me something solid to build on and I’m excited to be going to the Nurburgring next time.”

Honda Racing Team JAS
Alessandro Mariani

Alessandro Mariani

Team Principal

“It’s a good day for the team. After qualifying, we weren’t in as strong a position as we’d hoped, but Tiago has taken advantage of starting the Opening Race from the front row, driven a very strong race to win and has doubled his Championship advantage, all of which is very positive, especially because we worked very hard to make the cars stronger overnight for the races. I’m also pleased to see Ryo finish both races for the first time this year. I am, of course, very sad for Norbi. He’s going through a very difficult time right now with bad luck, but he showed a lot of resilience in the Main Race and that’s to his credit.”

Castrol Honda WTCC
Ryuichi Furukawa

Ryuichi Furukawa

Large Project Leader WTCC Development, Honda R&D

“Today is a happy day and an unhappy day. We are happy for Tiago scoring the second win of 2017 for Honda and increasing his championship lead and for Ryo finishing both races, but we are unhappy that Norbi suffered terrible luck that has cost him valuable points. The Main Race showed the true performance of the Civic today, which was that of a car that wasn’t quite fast enough to make the podium in normal conditions. While much of this is down to carrying 80kg of compensation weight, we know the car is likely to be heavy at all the remaining events, so it’s something we have to work hard on.”

Castrol Honda WTCC
WTCC Race of Hungary

Hungaroring, Hungary

WTCC 2017, Round 3

Sunday 14 May 2017, 13:31 Europe/London
# Driver Num Nationality Nat. Total Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Mehdi Bennani 25 MAR 30 25 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën 17 laps
2 Nick Catsburg 63 NDL 23 18 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +0.654
3 Tom Chilton 3 GBR 19 15 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën +3.553
4 Norbert Michelisz 5 HUN 16 12 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda +7.309
5 Tiago Monteiro 18 POR 13 10 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda +9.532
6 Esteban Guerrieri 86 ARG 10 8 Campos Racing Chevrolet +10.875
7 Thed Björk 62 SWE 7 6 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +11.865
8 Yann Ehrlacher 68 FRA 4 4 RC Motorsport Lada +14.547
9 Tom Coronel 9 NDL 2 2 ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet +20.783
10 Rob Huff 12 GBR 1 1 Münnich Motorsport Citroën +21.212
11 John Filippi 27 FRA - 0 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën +28.110
12 Kevin Gleason 24 USA - 0 RC Motorsport Lada +31.760
13 Ryo Michigami 34 JPN - 0 Honda Racing Team JAS Honda +36.582
14 Aurélien Panis 8 FRA - 0 Zengo Motorsport Honda +51.021
15 Dániel Nagy 99 HUN - 0 Zengo Motorsport Honda +6 laps
16 Nestor Girolami 61 ARG - 0 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +0 laps
Sunday 14 May 2017, 12:05 Europe/London
# Driver Num Nationality Nat. Total Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Tiago Monteiro 18 POR 25 25 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda 12 laps
2 Tom Chilton 3 GBR 18 18 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën +0.768
3 Rob Huff 12 GBR 15 15 Münnich Motorsport Citroën +2.296
4 Nestor Girolami 61 ARG 12 12 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +4.537
5 Nick Catsburg 63 NDL 10 10 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +5.221
6 Esteban Guerrieri 86 ARG 8 8 Campos Racing Chevrolet +10.308
7 Mehdi Bennani 25 MAR 6 6 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën +10.893
8 Yann Ehrlacher 68 FRA 4 4 RC Motorsport Lada +13.183
9 Tom Coronel 9 NDL 2 2 ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet +21.703
10 Aurélien Panis 8 FRA 1 1 Zengo Motorsport Honda +37,886
11 Ryo Michigami 34 JPN - 0 Honda Racing Team JAS Honda +38.532
12 Kevin Gleason 24 USA - 0 RC Motorsport Lada +38.808
13 Dániel Nagy 99 HUN - 0 Zengo Motorsport Honda +39.607
14 John Filippi 27 FRA - 0 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën +1 lap
15 Thed Björk 62 SWE - 0 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo +2 laps
16 Norbert Michelisz 5 HUN - 0 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda +2 laps
Saturday 13 May 2017, 14:01 Europe/London
# Driver Num Nationality Nat. Total Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Rob Huff 12 GBR 5 Münnich Motorsport Citroën 1:48.264
2 Mehdi Bennani 25 MAR 4 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën 1:48.591
3 Esteban Guerrieri 86 ARG 3 Campos Racing Chevrolet 1:48.896
4 Nick Catsburg 63 NDL 2 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo 1:48.941
5 Nestor Girolami 61 ARG 1 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo 1:49.674
6 Norbert Michelisz 5 HUN - Castrol Honda WTCC Honda 1:48.970
7 Tom Chilton 3 GBR - Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën 1:48.997
8 Thed Björk 62 SWE - Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo 1:49.103
9 Tiago Monteiro 18 POR - Castrol Honda WTCC Honda 1:49.148
10 John Filippi 27 FRA - Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën 1:49.608
11 Yann Ehrlacher 68 FRA - RC Motorsport Lada 1:49.772
12 Ryo Michigami 34 JPN - Honda Racing Team JAS Honda 1:50.012
13 Tom Coronel 9 NDL - ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet 1:50.216
14 Aurélien Panis 8 FRA - Zengo Motorsport Honda 1:51.029
15 Kevin Gleason 24 USA - RC Motorsport Lada 1:51.335
16 Dániel Nagy 99 HUN - Zengo Motorsport Honda 1:52.238
Driver Standings
Sunday, 14 May 2017
# Driver Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr.
Tiago MONTEIRO 18 POR 123 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda
Nick CATSBURG 63 NDL 85 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo
Tom CHILTON 3 GBR 81 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën
Thed BJöRK 62 SWE 77 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo
Mehdi BENNANI 25 MAR 73 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën
Rob HUFF 12 GBR 65 Münnich Motorsport Citroën
Esteban GUERRIERI 86 ARG 62 Campos Racing Chevrolet
Norbert MICHELISZ 5 HUN 62 Castrol Honda WTCC Honda
Nestor GIROLAMI 61 ARG 52 Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo
Tom CORONEL 9 NDL 20 ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet
Yann EHRLACHER 68 FRA 10 RC Motorsport Lada
John FILIPPI 27 FRA 7 Sébastien Loeb Racing Citroën
Kevin GLEASON 24 USA 2 RC Motorsport Lada
Aurélien PANIS 8 FRA 2 Zengo Motorsport Honda
Ryo MICHIGAMI 34 JPN 1 Honda Racing Team JAS Honda
Dániel NAGY 99 HUN 1 Zengo Motorsport Honda