Vernay: Double-duty could be key to title success

Hyundai Motorsport’s Jean-Karl Vernay believes that running dual-programmes in PURE ETCR and the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup this year could be a blessing in disguise as he targets title success.

The Frenchman was recently confirmed as one of four drivers of the Hyundai Veloster N ETCR in the world’s first all-electric, multi-brand touring car series, alongside Augusto Farfus, Tom Chilton and John Filippi.

Three of PURE ETCR’s five rounds in 2021, in Spain, Hungary and South Korea, will be double-header events with WTCR, meaning that Vernay will contest both series simultaneously.

But he does not see any issues with adjusting and re-adjusting his driving style from the Elantra TCR to the specific demands of the all-electric Veloster ETCR over the course of a weekend.

“It’s different of course but I already swapped cars from one test to another and my main quality is adaptation,” the former TCR International Champion said.

“Augusto [Farfus] is proving it too by doing electric and other races, and he’s right away there [on pace]. We are professional drivers and we can’t lose time. We just need to be ready for the team and ready to work as soon as possible.”

Vernay believes that the visit to Hyundai’s home circuit of Inje, South Korea, will provide him with a significant advantage over his rivals due to the amount of track time he will be afforded compared to drivers only participating in a single series.

I’ve never been to Inje but it will be new for everyone,” he added. “The fact I will be racing in both PURE ETCR and WTCR could be an advantage because I will have more track time than the others and this is good.

“Definitely we are going to have to be at our best for the Korean fans and the Hyundai fans. This race will be near to the end of the season and hopefully we will be in contention for the title to get extra support, to do even better.”

PURE ETCR’s inaugural season starts at Autodromo Vallelunga on June 18-20.

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