Local drivers Edgar Florindo and José Rodrigues have been announced as the two local drivers who will enter as wildcards in the upcoming FIA World Touring Car Cup round on the streets of Vila Real.
The FIA WTCR series organisers permit a maximum of two wildcard entries per event. Candidates are selected based on performances in national level touring car racing, as well as their potential as future full-time WTCR drivers or if their participation has the potential to attract additional interest from fans and media.
Thirty-year-old Florindo raced in both the Spanish and Portuguese TCR series’ last year in a SEAT León TCR entered by Speedy Motorsport (pictured above). He claimed two victories among eight podiums in the TCR Portugual championship.
His WTCR debut will come at the wheel of a Cupra León entered by Veloso Motorsport.
“I don’t have specific goals, but I have a commitment to myself to do my best on the track and, above all, to this city,” said Florindo, a native of Vila Real.
“I know my responsibility, which is to represent a city full of motorsport fans, the same city that gave and still gives us excellent drivers. I believe that with determination, work and the support of the huge crowd of Vila Real we will have good results.”
Florindo will be joined by 28-year-old José Rodrigues, who currently races in the TCR Italy series for Target Competition. It is yet to be confirmed which team and car will back Rodrigues’ entry.
Rodrigues has enjoyed success at the Vila Real street circuit, claiming one win and a further podium finish in a one-off appearance in the FIA European Touring Car Cup in 2017 (pictured above).
“Since I was a child, it was a dream to race in an FIA world-level event so I’m really proud. It is the result of many years of effort and also the passion of those who have always supported me,” he said.
The FIA WTCR Race of Portugal, the fifth round of the 2018 season, takes on July 23-24.
Images via FIA WTCR Media