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Lynk & Co Cyan Racing Suspends WTCR Competition on Safety Grounds

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Due to the current tyre safety situation, Lynk & Co Cyan Racing has suspended its World Touring Car Cup competition immediately.

Tyre failures have become a recurring occurrence in the 2022 WTCR season. As a result, the WTCR race in Germany in May was cancelled on safety grounds.

The most recent race weekend at Vallelunga in Italy saw Cyan Racing having to call for actions from the WTCR stakeholders again before qualifying after continued tyre issues, including a crash for Yvan Muller at over 220 km/h. Subsequently, the team had to withdraw from both races, in which only a handful of cars of the remaining 11-car field finished without a tyre failure.

The Lynk & Co 03 TCR model has, as per the Balance of Performance of the WTCR stakeholders, being the heaviest car in the field since its introduction in 2019 – currently running 80kg heavier than the championship-leading Hyundai Elantra N TCR model. This means that the Lynk & Co cars of Cyan Racing have been most frequently and most severely affected by the 2022 tyre failures.

After the team failed to find a satisfactory solution with the WTCR stakeholders in the week leading up to the next race at the Anneau Du Rhin race in France (August 6-7), Cyan Racing has, in consultation with Geely Group Motorsport, decided to suspend further World Touring Car Cup competition.

“We have a tyre this year that cannot handle the Balance of Performance and Compensation Weight window for all cars on all tracks. And our car runs heaviest of all. As a result, our drivers are subjected to high speed and crash tyre failures. It is simply not possible for Cyan Racing to continue the season in a safe manner,” said Fredrik Wahlén, team manager of Cyan Racing.

“It is the toughest decision we have ever taken as every single member of Cyan Racing is here to win and has sacrificed a lot of things to get where we are today. But we can’t race in a safe way under the current circumstances, and safety is our number one priority. We wish to thank the FIA for their support during these tough circumstances.”

The decision means that the five-car, five-time world champion team will not participate in this weekend’s races at Anneau Du Rhin in France or any of the yet-to-be-confirmed remaining rounds of the 2022 WTCR season.

“It has been a prolonged and incredibly frustrating situation for the team, the drivers, commercial partners and fans, a situation which has progressively pushed us out of the championship. We are very thankful for the FIA’s efforts to find a solution. Unfortunately, the combined effort of the WTCR stakeholders could not present a satisfactory solution to enable Cyan Racing to participate in the WTCR in a safe manner,” said Alexander Murdzevski Schedvin, Head of Geely Group Motorsport.

Background
  • The Lynk & Co 03 TCR is the heaviest car in the WTCR field and has been since its introduction in 2019 due to the Balance of Performance of the WTCR stakeholders, meaning that tyre failures occur earlier and more frequently compared to other models in the WTCR.
  • The WTCR stakeholders cancelled the second race of the 2022 season at the Nürburgring in May due to safety reasons connected to tyre performance.
  • Cyan Racing has worked with the WTCR stakeholders and the tyre supplier during testing and races to find a solution, including running car setup parameters provided by the tyre supplier, but with no improvement to the problem.
  • Cyan Racing withdrew from the WTCR races at Vallelunga in July following severe tyre safety issues during practice, including a high-speed crash for Yvan Muller.
  • Cyan Racing called for firm actions from the WTCR stakeholders before the WTCR races in Italy. None were made.
  • Several competitors suffered tyre failures during the WTCR races at Vallelunga, including Audi, Cupra and Honda cars.
  • The WTCR stakeholders have proposed unsatisfactory changes ahead of the WTCR races at Anneau Du Rhin, meaning that the Lynk & Co 03 TCR cars of Cyan Racing would still run with more weight than at the Nürburgring where the races were cancelled on tyre safety grounds.
  • The remaining part of the 2022 WTCR calendar is still not confirmed by the WTCR stakeholders, not allowing Cyan Racing any possibilities to perform simulations and calculations connected to tyre safety performance for the remaining races.
  • No race specification tyres have so far been made available for private testing, making it impossible for teams to complete further validation of tyres.

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