The seventh and eighth races of the 2010 World Touring Car Championship season will take place this weekend at Belgium’s Zolder circuit, and we at Richard’s F1 will provide you with all of the latest news and highlights of the best touring car championship in the world as it takes centre stage this weekend!
The event marks the first time that the championship series will visit the Belgian circuit, the former home of the Belgian Formula 1 Grand Prix between 1973 and 1982. However, it will be the series’ second visit to Belgium, having had a round at the famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit in 2005.
Several of the World Touring Car Championship competitors, however, have had plenty of experience at the Zolder circuit, and a few will have been present at the 2001 meeting staged under the European Touring Car Championship – Gabriele Tarquini took victory in one of the races in a Honda Accord.
After SEAT squandered a fistful of championship points with a succession of tyre failures in the last round at Monza, the Spanish squad will be hoping to put its championship challenge to rights and ensure a much better performance this weekend.
BMW and Chevrolet very much took advantage of this misfortune to luck into opportunistic victories and help themselves to a good haul of points to bring their drivers back into contention in the championship standings.
One factor that might help Chevrolet will be the appearance of local driver Vincent Radermecker in the fourth RML-run Cruze, and the Belgian could prove a useful foil for the expanded operation after Argentine driver Leonel Pernía acquitted himself well at Monza.
Another Belgian driver will be making his return to the World Touring Car Championship, with Pierre-Yves Corthals (pictured, top) joining the fray in a petrol-driven SEAT León TFSI. Corthals – who last competed in the WTCC in 2008 and who gave Tom Coronel a serious run for his money in the Independents’ Championship that year – will become the first SEAT driver to be represented in the Independents’ Trophy this season.
There’s certainly plenty to look forward to this weekend! The drivers will have their first outing on the Zolder circuit at 3pm local time on Friday.
[Original images via Race Corporation and David Lister Photography]