Tiago Monteiro says he will hope to repeat his podium form from the 2007 season as the World Touring Car Championship heads to Pau for the first street race of the year.

The Portuguese former F1 racer picked up his maiden win during the second round of the campaign in Mexico but then struggled with his ballast laden SEAT Leon TDi in Valencia last time out - failing to pick up any points over the course of the race weekend.

However the #18 Leon TDi will be carrying less success ballast this weekend at the tight and twisty French circuit and while he admits it will be difficult, Monteiro said he is focused on trying to repeat the results that saw him stand on the Pau podium twice last year.

"I really like city circuits and Pau in particular," he said. "It's a chance for me to see the French fans and friends, and to rediscover an extremely technical and beautiful circuit.

"I have excellent memories of this meeting of the championship since I was the most competitive SEAT Sport driver last year with two podiums. It will be difficult to revive such quality results with such competitive and numerous competitors, but that will be my objective to get myself back into championship contention and to help SEAT Sport to reach its objectives."

However Monteiro added that two factors will be key to how successful Pau proves to be, with rain forecast for early in the weekend and qualifying also vital to a good result on race day.

"A favourable position on the starting grid is vital for having two good races at Pau," he said. "As with all city circuits, Pau does not provide many overtaking opportunities and the three key factors for the weekend are a good qualifying session, a good start, and trying not to touch the rails too closely!

"In the event of rain, some doors might open and allow for overtaking; it makes it possible to have spectacular races but for us drivers, we will have to think about the possibility of rain starting with the free sessions where we will determine the set-ups for the rest of the weekend."


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