Reigning champion, Hungary’s Norbert Kiss enjoyed a nearly-perfect weekend at Misano’s Goodyear FIA European Truck Racing Championship’s season opener to kicks start his title-defending campaign
Picking right where he left off in 2021, Kiss put his Révész Racing MAN on pole for the first race of the season. He then converted that to a light-to-flag victory, keeping his main opponent, six-time titlist Jochen Hahn, at bay.
In the semi-reversed grid Race 2, he made his way from eighth starting position to finish third. On Sunday, the Hungarian ace clinched another pole and his second victory of the event. A distant eighth-place finish in Race 4, after he failed to progress through the pack, having started eight, prevented him from rounding out a nearly perfect season-opening weekend. Yet, Kiss leaves Misano with 51 points to his name, six clear off Hahn, whose weekend included a pair of second places, one further podium and a fourth-place finish.
Only two points down on Hahn, lies his compatriot Sascha Lenz, who tasted victory in Race 4, and added three other podium finishes, proving to his more decorated rivals that he should be a force to reckoned with this year.
Antonio Albacete emerged on top in Race 2, taking his first victory since Zolder 2019. The experienced Spaniard made the most of the two semi-reversed great heats, taking a victory and a second place. This, combined with a pair of fourth places, allowed him to accumulate 39 points, which placed him fourth overall.
Steffi Halm rounded out the top five in the standings, leaving two Freightliner team-mates behind. Owing to a career-best finish of fourth in the final race of the weekend, youngster Teo Calvet is placed sixth in the ranking, while his 2017 title-winning team-mate lying only seventh, two fifth places and two retirements making for far from ideally season-opening event for the Czech racer.
Top ten in the standings is completed Rene Reinert, Anthony Janiec and Andre Kurism.
Round two of the Goodyear FIA ETRC is set to be stage on the second weekend of June at Kiss’ home circuit, the Hungaroring, with WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup and FIA ETCR eTouring Car World Cup also on the bill of the action-packed event.