The Special Tune Racing team has lurched from one calamity to the next on his maiden World Touring Car Championship outing this weekend, and it will now have to wait until the championship’s season second round – next month in Spain – before it makes its pukka race debut.
The British team – which graduated from the British Touring Car Championship to be listed as SEAT’s first-named ‘factory’ outfit – was reduced to a one-car effort before the season-opener at Monza even began, when Tom Boardman was forced to pull out over a shortage of available parts.
This left Darryl O’Young as the team’s sole representative for the weekend, but he suffered an engine failure in qualifying and failed to post a time.
Dispensation from the Race Stewards would see him on the grid for Sunday’s two races, but the Hong Kong driver’s freshly-repaired car then proceeded to catch fire in this morning’s warm-up, putting him out of action as well.
His car was well and truly ablaze by the time he pulled up at a marshal’s post at the Ascari Chicane, and the track marshals were hopelessly slow to put the fire out.
For the record, Chevrolet drivers occupied the first five positions on the warm-up timesheets, with defending champion Yvan Muller posting the quickest overall lap-time of the session.
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