O’YOUNG REMAINS UPBEAT DESPITE “WORST WEEKEND” IN VALENCIA
WTCC SEASON TO RESUME IN EAST ASIA AFTER 7 WEEKS LATER
(5 September 2011, Hong Kong, China) It’s all down to the last three stages in East Asia, as the 2011 World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) season ticks towards the final quarter. Despite undergoing an undesirable weekend on the tracks in Valencia, Spain, Darryl O’Young remains upbeat in his chances on winning the Yokohama Drivers’ Trophy.
"Valencia is one of the toughest tracks for front wheel drive in terms of tire durability. However I had no idea it was going to be the worst weekend for us in the entire season thus far,” said O’Young.
As a matter of fact, things just did not look right in Valencia over the weekend, where Darryl missed the first free practice due to a steering pump failure, before settling for an overall P13 grid in Sunday’s two races in Spain. The WTCC sophomore did fight hard and till the very end. But having a hit from behind in round 1 and struggling with his tires in the second has doomed the touring car and sports car race driver to a P9 and P8 finish in the independent category respectively.
From the two races, Darryl O’Young pocketed one point to bring his season tally to 79, but with all his rivals enjoying a rather successful weekend, the Hong Kong number one driver inevitably lost grounds in the title race. O’Young now trails new leader Kristian Poulsen by 20 points, who claimed two independent wins out of two in Valencia, but Darryl is already focusing on the final six races of the season, starting in Japan, on its famous Suzuka Circuit.
"I am glad to be leaving Europe still with a strong chance in the independents championship and I’ll push hard in Asia to turn things around for our team and for all our fans,” O’Young said confidently.
Darryl O’Young grabbed a win and a runner-up finish in Japan last season as a WTCC rookie, and following a summer holiday in August, the 2011 WTCC season will now take another seven-week time off, before the season proceeds to its final three stages in East Asia.
2011 Yokohama Drivers’ Trophy after Rd 18 (Top 5):
Position Driver Total points Stat
1 Kristian Poulson (DNK) 99 6 winss + 3 podiums
2 Norbert Michelisz (HUN) 95 4 wins + 6 podiums
3 Franz Engstler (DEU) 82 4 wins + 3 podiums
4 Javier Villa (ESP) 81 1 win + 5 podiums
5 Darryl O’Young (CHN) 79 1 win + 6 podiums
Qualifying Q1 – P13
"I struggled with consistency and that cost me from advancing into the second qualifying session. 13th overall and 7th in the independents was much below our expectations and very disappointing.”
Race 1 at Valencia (2011 round 17) – Independents P9 and overall P15
"As we were braking into Turn 1, I was hit from behind, forcing me wide and into another car beside me. This ruined my front and rear alignment in my car and I had no pace throughout the race. I just drove around in an attempt to pick up points.”
Race 2 at Valencia (2011 round 18) – Independents P8 and overall P14
"My car was strong at the beginning of the race and we were involved with several battles throughout the race, but I struggled with my tires as we got into the final stage of the race and I lost some positions to rear wheel drive cars, which left me 8th in the independents at the checkered flag.”
Sponsors LKM and A-Ha Coffee are the major forces behind Darryl’s pursuit of success in the 2011 FIM World Touring Car Championship, with additional team support coming from Chevrolet.
Please visit www.fiawtcc.com for more WTCC information and www.darryloyoung.com for the latest updates about Darryl.