Lynk & Co Cyan Racing fought through a tough Kumho TCR World Tour premiere at Algarve in Portugal, claiming a 1-2 victory in the second race courtesy Santiago Urrutia and Thed Björk.
The Lynk & Co 03 TCR drivers battled a straight-line deficit compared to their competitors from the first session on track to the last, with Ma Qing Hua best of the team's drivers in qualifying with sixth position.
The reversed Race 2 grid saw Santiago Urrutia making a strong start from pole position, heading the field from lights to flag ahead of team-mate Thed Björk.
"It’s a fantastic feeling to start the season with a victory. We fought really hard to claim this first win of the new generation Lynk & Co 03 TCR, so congrats and a big thank you to everyone involved in the development of the new car. We are still far from where we want to be in terms of pace and need to keep working hard for the next race," said Santiago Urrutia.
"It’s great to step onto the podium with Santi and celebrate our first TCR World Tour weekend with a double win, a fantastic reward for all of the hard work during the winter. I’m happy to have secured a solid haul of points, something we need to keep doing this year," said Thed Björk.
Yann Ehrlacher fought his way strongly up through the field from eleventh to seventh place in both races, with team-mate Ma Qing Hua claiming a solid sixth place finish in the first race.
"Although I of course wanted more personally from the weekend, I’m really happy for the team to score a 1-2. I had two good races with plenty of overtakes, but we are still not where we want to be pace-wise and that’s where our focus is at the moment for the coming races," said Yann Ehrlacher.
"Overall, this has been a good start to the season for us as a team. I had a solid first race but some issues in the second that we need to look into. But I am happy to have scored some points this weekend and I’m looking forward to the next race at Spa-Francorchamps," said Ma Qing Hua.
Thed Björk has scored most points of the Lynk & Co Cyan Racing drivers from the season opener and is currently placed fifth overall, Santiago Urrutia sixth, Yann Ehrlacher seventh and Ma Qing Hua eighth.
The team championship has got Lynk & Co Cyan Racing placed third overall after the Portuguese season opener, 27 points from the lead.
The next TCR World Tour race takes place at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps on May 26-28.
Standings - Drivers - Top 5
1 Norbert Michelisz 57 pts
2 Mikel Azcona 55 (-2)
3 Frédéric Vervisch 48 (-9)
4 Rob Huff 46 (-11)
5 Thed Björk 37 (-20)
6 Santiago Urrutia 30 (-27)
7 Yann Ehrlacher 28 (-29)
8 Ma Qing Hua 26 (-31)
Standings - Teams - Top 5
1 - BRC Hyundai 114 pts
2 - Audi Sport Comtoyou 94 (-20)
3 - Cyan Racing Lynk & Co 87 (-27)
4 – Comtoyou Racing 36 (-78)
5 - Comtoyou 28 (-86)
2023 TCR World Tour calendar
28-30 April – Portimao – Portugal
26-28 May – Spa – Belgium
09-11 June – Vallelunga – Italy
16-18 June – Hungaroring – Hungary
18-20 August – El Pinar – Uruguay
25-27 August – San Luis – Argentina
03-05 November – Sydney Motorsport Park - Australia
10-12 November – Bathurst – Australia
17-19 November – Macau – China
About Geely Group Motorsport
Geely Group Motorsport is a brand neutral entity based within Zhejiang Geely Holding Group. It was founded in 2018 to provide strategic and tactical expertise to serve the best motorsport sporting and commercial interests for the auto brands in the group. One of its tactical assignments include the development and management of the Lynk & Co TCR and customer racing programmes.