Jack Young scores his first victory in Portugal
Jack Young claimed his first victory of his TCR career at the opening round of the 2022 TCR Europe series at the Portimao circuit in Portugal. Jack followed this up with a 11th-place finish in Race 2, and so the Northern Irishman leaves the weekend second in the standings, well-placed to fight for the title.
With his new team Halder Motorsport, Young placed his JAS Motorsport-built Honda Civic TCR on the front row for the opening race, starting behind his new team-mate and last year’s Spanish champion Mike Halder.
The two led the pack during the opening laps, before Jack made a move down the inside of Mike’s car at the hairpin on lap five to take the lead, and went on to build a comfortable gap and claimed his first touring car race victory, and which would propel him into the lead of the drivers’ championship.
In Race 2, Young started from ninth, courtesy of the top ten qualifiers being reversed, and had to fight his way up the order. Jack made good progress at the start of the race, and had managed to pick his way up to sixth by lap nine. Jack was chasing down one of the Hyundais, when he was ambushed by the two chasing Cupras, which both made a move down the inside of his Civic into Turn 1 on the tenth lap. Three-wide into the turn didn’t work out, with Jack making contact with the Cupra of his former team-mate Isidro Callejas, and he fell down the order with damage to his front splitter. He was able to finish in 11th, picking up critical points in the title battle to keep him in touch with the series leader.
Jack now heads to the next round of the championship at the Le Castellet circuit in France in three weeks’ time second in the standings, just nine points behind.
Jack Young said:
“I’m delighted with my first win in TCR. It’s been hard trying these last two years, and now to pick it up in TCR Europe in the first round, and with a 1-2 finish for the team, I couldn’t be happier. The first race was very difficult for the first five laps, but when I was in the lead, I just got into a rhythm and got a gap. Race 2 was a really tough race. We had a few problems, and we got into too many fights. But we can be very happy with the victory yesterday, and we can be happy that we took away some more points today, and are in a good position in the championship. It’s been a really good start to the season, and I’m looking forwards to France and to see what we can do there. I’d like to say a big thanks to JAS Motorsport and Halder Motorsport, it’s been a brilliant car and team to work with, and a great opening weekend for them too.”
TCR Europe series drivers’ standings:
P1 – Franco Girolami (68), P2 – Jack Young (59), P3 – Mike Halder (58), P4 – Josh Files (51).