Curitiba, FP1: Tarquini chases the Chevy trio

Muller, Huff and Menu set the fastest times


By Olivier Ferret

21 July 2012 - 14:28
Curitiba, FP1: Tarquini chases the (...)

In a cool and sunny morning, Yvan Muller, Rob Huff and Alain Menu set the fastest times in the first free practice session at Curitiba. Once again Gabriele Tarquini seemed the only driver capable to threaten Chevrolet’s supremacy.

The Italian driver posted the fourth fastest lap and was even able to top the time sheet in the early stages with a lap of 1:23.953, but then Muller took command with an impressive series of laps: 1:23.034, 1:22.862, 1:22.750 and 1:22.689.

Huff and Menu managed to climb to second and third, completing their best laps in 1:22.992 and 1:23.228, while Tarquini improved to 1:23.328 that was good enough for placing him fourth ahead of the bamboo-engineering duo of Michel Nykjær (1:23.563) and Alex MacDowall (1:23.649).

Just like in yesterday’s test session, Tarquini’s SEAT was the only car to squeeze among the five Chevrolet Cruzes.

Norbert Michelisz posted the seventh fastest lap (1:24.124), emerging as the best of the BMW drivers.

Tom Coronel provided a thrilling moment, spinning at the exit of the last turn. His BMW car performed a spectacular pirouette and avoided to hit the pit wall, before stalling in the middle of the track, against the traffic.

Pos. Driver Car Time
1 Yvan MULLER Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 1:22.689
2 Robert HUFF Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 1:22.992
3 Alain MENU Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 1:23.228
4 Gabriele TARQUINI SEAT Leon WTCC 1:23.328
5 Michel NYKJAER Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 1:23.563
6 Alex MACDOWALL Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 1:23.649
7 Norbert MICHELISZ BMW 320 TC 1:24.124
8 Darryl O’YOUNG SEAT Leon WTCC 1:24.247
9 Aleksei DUDUKALO SEAT Leon WTCC 1:24.277
10 Mehdi BENNANI BMW 320 TC 1:24.325
11 Stefano D’ASTE BMW 320 TC 1:24.330
12 Alberto CERQUI BMW 320 TC 1:24.382
13 Tom CORONEL BMW 320 TC 1:24.414
14 Tiago MONTEIRO SR Leon 1.6T 1:24.572
15 Pepe ORIOLA SEAT Leon WTCC 1:24.610
16 James NASH Ford Focus S2000 TC 1:25.008
17 Charles NG BMW 320 TC 1:25.015
18 Tom BOARDMAN SEAT Leon WTCC 1:25.119
19 Tom CHILTON Ford Focus S2000 TC 1:25.216
20 Fernando MONJE SEAT Leon WTCC 1:26.577
21 Franz ENGSTLER BMW 320 TC -:—.---


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