The latest Honda Civic TCR to come out of the JAS Motorsport factory is proving as popular as its 2015 predecessor. Following Boutsen Ginion Racing‘s announcement to contest the inaugural WTCR season with 2 of the Honda’s, Tiago Monteiro has been confirmed as the first driver to join the Belgian team.
Monteiro had a stunning start to his campaign in the World Touring Car Championship last year, his eleventh in the series, scoring 2 wins among a total of 7 podiums from the first 12 races. Unfortunately, chest injuries sustained in a massive testing incident curtailed his title-challenging and forced him to miss the rest of the season.
Alongside his successful stint in the WTCC, the Portuguese driver has also had prior success in the TCR category having claimed 2 victories in TCR Benelux for his new employers Boutsen Ginion and a solitary win in the TCR International Series with West Coast Racing.
“I’m delighted to remain part of the Honda Racing family for another year. Since I first worked with Honda in 2012, I feel we’ve been getting stronger and stronger by the season and by last year we were in a very good place to win the championship before my accident,” said Monteiro.
“The past six months have been incredibly tough, but thanks to some amazing support I’m now well on my way to getting back in a racing car. Boutsen Ginion Racing are a strong team, who I’ve won races with in TCR before, so I can’t wait to drive the car and for the season to start.”
Alongside the Monteiro announcement comes news from the All-INKL.com Munnich Motorsport team who also confirm their participation in the WTCR with the Honda Civic TCR, having previously competed with the older model in the European Touring Car Championship.
Esteban Guerrieri has been confirmed as the first pilot to join their 2018 squad with rumours suggesting another 2 drivers are set to be added to the German garage. Guerrieri is a recent inductee to the Honda factory line-up having scored 2 wins in the TC1 Civic after replacing Monteiro at the end of 2017.
“I felt like last year was a real breakthrough year for me in world touring cars, so I’m extremely pleased to be racing a Honda Civic in 2018. TCR is the fastest-growing touring car category in the world and I’m incredibly excited to be a part of this programme,” explained the Argentine.
“I had some great races against the ALL-INKL.COM Münnich cars in the WTCC last year and it’s clear they can run a very fast machine, so I’m optimistic of putting together a title challenge.”
The Civic underwent significant preparatory miles during the off-season and has since made its track debut in the Dubai 24 Hour race in January. JAS Motorsport, who have developed Honda’s touring cars since they joined the WTCC in 2012, will provide support for the 2 teams throughout the season.