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Files must play a waiting game as he bids to wrap up his third TCR crown

PUBLISHED: 07:20 21 September 2017

Josh Files (centre) on the race two podium flanked by Mike Halder on the right and Target Competition team-mate Kris Richard on his left. Picture: TCR Germany

Josh Files (centre) on the race two podium flanked by Mike Halder on the right and Target Competition team-mate Kris Richard on his left. Picture: TCR Germany

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Josh Files was unable to secure back-to-back TCR German titles at the weekend, despite winning the final race at Sachsenring, Germany, because nearest rival Mike Halder followed him across the finish line.

Josh Files taking the chequered flag for the fifth time in the TCR German series. Picture: TCR Germany Josh Files taking the chequered flag for the fifth time in the TCR German series. Picture: TCR Germany

“Why does Mike have to do that?” said a laughing Files. “Of course, I want to win the championship, it is important, but I have the most fun when I win races. The fight between Mike and I was great, but in the end I had everything under control.”

The Poringland racer will take a 78-point lead over Halder to Hockenheim this weekend and just needs a solid score to wrap up his third TCR title, having clinched the TCR Middle East title earlier this year.

Files qualified his Target Competition Honda Civic in 10th for the opening race. “We didn’t have the one-lap pace we expected and therefore qualifying was very difficult,” he admitted.

In the opening race, Files made another good start and was soon fighting for fifth, relieving Moritz Oestreich of the position after a safety car interlude. But Luca Engstler proved a tougher nut to crack and halted Files’ progress, but after a post-race penalty for contact demoted Engstler, Files was promoted to fourth.

Josh Files (1) battling with rival Mike Halder on his way to victory in race two. Picture: TCR Germany Josh Files (1) battling with rival Mike Halder on his way to victory in race two. Picture: TCR Germany

Files started race two from pole position and would never be headed as he claimed his fifth victory of the year. Halder quickly moved up to second, having started from fifth on the grid, but despite getting close on a couple of occasions was unable to mount a serious challenge.

“Now we have to go to Hockenheim and push for victories, that’s why we go racing. It will be a great finale and I cannot wait,” said Files.

The next couple of weeks could prove critical for Topcroft’s Harry Webb. The joint British F4 Graduate Cup leader hopes he will be able to fight for the title at the final round, at Brands Hatch at the end of the month, and take the prize of a fully paid entry for next year’s series.

The local racer is delighted to have made the nominations list of the McLaren/Autosport/BRDC Young Driver of the Year Award and is drumming up support to ensure he makes the final six contestants. You can support Webb by emailing maba.nominations@autosport.com with the subject line ‘nominations’.

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