Charlie Kang is crowned TCR Korea’s first champion
04 November 2018
Indigo Racing’s Charlie Kang Byung Hui was crowned the first TCR Korea champion as the series’ inaugural season came to an end at Yeongam’s Korea International Circuit. Kang grabbed the title halfway through the second race, when the E-Rain Motorsport Volkswagen Golf GTI of his rival Andrew Kim retired with a broken driveshaft while he was running in fifth position ahead of Kang’s Hyundai i30 N.
Kim had managed to take the lead in the standings after Race 1, with a nine-point margin over Kang, but after Race 2 he dropped back to second, six points behind the champion.
In Race 1, pole sitter guest driver Peter Terting led the field at the start from Noh Dong Gi, Kang Dong Woo, Kim Jin Soo and Andrew Kim; Charlie Kang – who was excluded from Qualifying after his car failed to pass the ride height check – and Jung Nam Su started from the pit lane. However, Terting was given a drive-through for jump-start and rejoined in sixth position; Noh Dong Gi inherited the lead in the E-Rain Motorsport Hyundai, while Andrew Kim moved up to second overtaking Kim Jin Soo and Kang Dong Woo.
On lap 9, Charlie Kang and Kang Dong Woo collided while fighting for the fourth position and the latter retired with a broken rear suspension. Terting overtook Charlie Kang on lap 11, but then struggled to pass Kim Jin Soo and eventually managed to do so on lap 21, moving up to third.
In the final part of the race Andrew Kim closed the gap from Noh Dong Gi, but couldn’t get close enough to try an overtaking manoeuvre and finished second by six tenths. Charlie Kang finished fourth, but was then dropped to sixth by a 30-second time penalty for his incident with Kang Dong Woo.
In the second race, Terting looked set to make up from the disappointment of the previous race. He led from the start and built a comfortable margin, but on lap 17 he pitted with a flat front tyre and rejoined to finish fourth. Tyre issues also hit Race 1 winner Noh Dong Gi who lost one lap in the pits and finished fifth and Kang Dong Woo who stopped with three laps to go.
Series newcomer Kim Jin Soo and his Indigo Racing Hyundai was victorious with a 28-second margin, becoming the fifth different winner in six races. During the final lap, Jung Nam Su grabbed the second position after a brief battle with Charlie Kang.
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