Kevin Gleason to make Touring Car debut as FIA WTCC season heads to Monza, Italy
Kevin Gleason is set for a World Touring Car debut in Monza this week.
The American will take to the 16-car grid as one of two Lada's in the field, and the 30-year-old is delighted (if a little surprised) to be making his WTCC bow.
" Until last weekend we were still working on a deal to return to the TCR International Series so to be taking the grid a week later in the WTCC is a bit of a surprise. I have followed the series closely for a few years now and have been along to a few of the races. I have been very impressed at the levels of professionalism and of course the quality of the drivers so when the opportunity came along to join RC I jumped at the chance. I'm looking forward to joining all of the top-level drivers in this highly competitive series. The only downside is that things have come together very late and I only sat in the car for the first time on Tuesday so I am managing my expectations for Monza."
Built in 1922, Monza is not only the spiritual home of Italian motor racing but also the WTCC: the inaugural FIA World Touring Car Championship event took place at the track north of Milan in 1987, while the first race of the WTCC’s new era in 2005 was also held on Monza’s high-speed layout. With the legendary parkland venue missing from the World Touring Car schedule since 2013, its return for 2017 will be keenly felt when famous turns like the Curva Grande, Lesmo and Parabolica will resonate to the sound of TC1 World Touring Cars for the first time.
- Name: Autodromo Nazionale Monza
- Location: Via Vedano, 5, 20900 Monza MB, Italy
- Website: www.monzanet.it
- Length: 5.793 kilometres
- Opening Race distance: 9 laps (52.137km)
- Main Race distance: 11 laps (63.723km)
- Lap record (qualifying): Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze), 1m56.486s (179.03kph), 23/03/13
- Lap record (race): Rob Huff (Chevrolet Cruze), 1m59.000s (175.25kph), 11/03/12
- WTCC appearances: Eight (WTCC Race of Italy took place at Imola in 2009)
- Time zone: GMT +2 hours
- Nearest airport: Milan Linate (26 kilometres)
- 2013: Race 1: Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze); Race 2: Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze)
- 2012: R1: Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze); R2: Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze)
- 2011: R1: Rob Huff (Chevrolet Cruze); R2: Rob Huff (Chevrolet Cruze)
- 2010: R1: Andy Priaulx (BMW 320si); R2: Yvan Muller (Chevrolet Cruze)
- 2009: R1: Gabriele Tarquini (SEAT León); R2: Yvan Muller (SEAT León)*
- 2008: R1: Yvan Muller (SEAT León); R2: Gabriele Tarquini (SEAT León)
- 2007: R1: Yvan Muller (SEAT León); R2: Jordi Gené (SEAT León)
- 2006: R1: Andy Priaulx (BMW 320si); R2: Augusto Farfus (Alfa Romeo 156)
- 2005: R1: Dirk Muller (BMW 320i); R2: James Thompson (Alfa Romeo 156)
*Event took place at Imola
Saturday 29 April
09h00-09h45: Free Practice 1
12h00-12h45: Free Practice 2
14h15-14h35: Qualifying Q1
14h40-14h50: Qualifying Q2
15h00 (pit lane opens): Qualifying Q3
15h25-15h45: WTCC MAC3
Sunday 30 April
12h15-12h40: Opening Race (9 laps)
14h15-14h45: Main Race (11 laps)
STANDINGS AND STATISTICS
- Drivers (after 2/20): 1 Monteiro 43; 2 Michelisz 36; 3 Catsburg 28; 4 Bennani 26; 5 Guerrieri 25; etc.
- Manufacturers (after 2/20): 1 Honda 96; 2 Volvo Polestar 96
- WTCC Trophy (after 2/20): 1 Bennani and Chilton 16; 3 Guerrieri 13; 4 Coronel 11; 5 Huff 6; etc.
- WTCC Teams (after 2/20): 1 Sébastien Loeb 18; 2 Campos 14; 3 ROAL 14; 4 Zengő 8; 5 Münnich 6
- All-time race wins (top 5): Y Muller 48; López 29; Huff 28; Menu 23; Tarquini 22
- All-time pole positions (top 5): Y Muller 29; López 21; Tarquini 17; Menu 15; Farfus and Huff 11
- All-time fastest laps (top 5): Y Muller 38; López 29; Huff 27; Tarquini 24; Menu 20
- All-time laps led (top 5): Y Muller 571; Huff 344; López 301; Menu 297; Tarquini 295
www.fiawtcc.com contributed to the writing of this report