On the eve of the 2022 racing season in the TCR Europe series, Tom Coronel is ready to start. In the new season of the FIA WTCR World Touring Car Cup, the Dutchman is once again in action with an Audi from the Belgian team Comtoyou Racing from Waterloo. The main partners are once again DHL, Eurol, ERU Prestige and Tricorp.
“The TCR Europe Series really represents classic touring car racing that I love so much,” said Tom Coronel, who celebrated his 50th birthday on April 5. “A full field, tough competition in which the necessary contact is not shunned, nice circuits and a good mutual atmosphere next to the track. That makes it nice for me to be there again. And of course especially if the results are good too. In that regard, I had absolutely nothing to complain about last year!” Indeed: of the 31 drivers who came into action during the season, Coronel finished the racing year fourth. In total, he was on the podium three times, once as a winner, and he finished in the top ten ten times.
One aspect is different compared to last season: after Coronel belonged to the select company of only four drivers in the WTCR last year, who took action with the latest version of the Audi RS 3 LMS, he is now driving in the European Championship. series with the evolved model. “The new Audi is now widely available and has already achieved some success. Last year I was also able to drive on the podium with the previous version in the TCR Europe Series and even win, in front of my own audience at Zandvoort, but it’s great to be able to drive the new Audi in the European series now. That makes everything just a bit better, because development never stands still in motorsport.”
Tom Coronel chose the starting number 30 in 2019, because that was his 30th year in motorsport. “We then continued that: in 2020 I drove with 31, last year with 32 and this year with starting number 33.” What do we know that from? Coronel, laughing: “Yes, indeed, I thought: If Max Verstappen doesn’t want the number 33 this year, because he can drive with the number 1, then I’ll take it! But 33 in combination with Audi is also good, because it is also the starting number of René Rast, who has already become DTM champion three times!”
Speaking of DTM, the TCR Europe Series will be in action no less than three times this year as support for the prestigious German racing series, starting with the season’s start in Portimão in Portugal on April 30 and May 1 and then also at the Norisring in Nuremberg on July 2 and 3 and at the Nürburgring on August 27 and 28. The other events of the TCR Europe Series will take place at Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet in southern France (21 and 22 May), Spa-Francorchamps in the Belgian Ardennes (18 and 19 June), Monza (24 and 25 September) and Barcelona (15 and 16 October). “All beautiful circuits and it’s nice to ride with DTM again,” says Coronel. “Certainly on the Norisring, a street circuit that always attracts tens of thousands of visitors. I haven’t been there since my time in the German Formula 3 Championship in 1995.” Coronel is looking forward to the new racing season: “However long I have been active in motorsport, when spring comes, I can hardly wait to start racing again. That’s just part of me and that will probably never go away, haha! We can go again at the end of the month, I’m looking forward to it! Oh well, I may have turned 50, but the race car feels and doesn’t know how old you are… Don’t forget Gabriele Tarquini became world champion when he was 57, so there’s still a future for me in motorsport!”
“If something is good, why change it? I’m really enjoying the car and the team, my loyal partners want to continue, so I’m happy to be back at the start next season.”
Tom Coronel is supported by: DHL, Eurol Lubricants, Tricorp Workwear, ERU Prestige, Ireckonu, Business Data Challengers, Bouwgroep Dijkstra Draisma, Patina, Oranjedak, Intrax Suspension Technology, API-4-BRANDS, ASC Group, P1 Advanced Racewear, FEBO, CM and Copernica.
TCR Europe 2022 calendar
April 30 – May 1, Autodromo Internacional Algarve, Portugal
May 21-22, Circuit Paul Ricard, France
June 18-19, Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
July 2-3, Norisring, Germany
August 27-28, Nürburgring, Germany
September 23-25, Monza ENI Circuit, Italy
October 15-16, Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Spain