Slovakia Ring, Race 2: López rebounds to deny Catsburg a WTCC win

Muller finished sixth after falling back

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By Olivier Ferret

17 April 2016 - 15:25
Slovakia Ring, Race 2: López rebounds to

José María López repassed Nicky Catsburg with just one lap remaining to win an enthralling Main Race at the FIA WTCC Race of Slovakia.

López had shot from third to first at the start of the race past his Citroën team-mate Yvan Muller, who was then relegated to third by Catsburg at Turn 2 after contact at the first corner.

After initially building a lead, López then began to struggle with a problem on his car, and Catsburg took the lead away from him out of Turn 1 on lap four. Having only missed out on the fastest time in qualifying by four hundredths of a second, Catsburg was on course to take the first WTCC win for the LADA Vesta but came under attack from López again on the penultimate lap.

López got inside Catsburg at the long right-hander at the end of the lap and was 0.02 seconds ahead at the start of the final lap, making the lead his for good at Turn 1.

Catsburg also fell behind Tiago Monteiro, who followed up his Opening Race victory with a second place. Norbert Michelisz challenged Catsburg’s third place but lost out to Thed Björk, who scored the best result yet for Polestar Cyan Racing in fourth.

Muller finished sixth after falling back due to contact with Rob Huff, whose race ended in a gravel trap with two laps to go. Mehdi Bennani beat his team-mate Tom Chilton to another WTCC Trophy win in seventh, with Fredrik Ekblom ninth and Tom Coronel 10th.

Pos. Driver Team Car Time
1 Jose Maria Lopez Citroen Total WTCC Citroen 12 laps
2 Tiago Monteiro Honda Racing Team JAS Honda +0.700
3 Nicky Catsburg LADA Sport Lada +3.260
4 Thed Bjork Polestar Cyan Volvo +3.868
5 Norbert Michelisz Honda Racing Team JAS Honda +4.620
6 Yvan Muller Citroen Total WTCC Citroen +4.737
7 Mehdi Bennani Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen +5.262
8 Tom Chilton Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen +5.950
9 Fredrik Ekblom Polestar Cyan Volvo +7.551
10 Tom Coronel ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet +18.969
11 John Filippi Campos Racing Chevrolet +19.345
12 James Thompson Munnich Motorsport Chevrolet +20.045
13 Grégoire Demoustier Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen +21.675
14 Gabriele Tarquini LADA Sport Lada +98.571
15 Rob Huff Honda Racing Team JAS Honda DNF
16 Hugo Valente LADA Sport Lada DNF
17 Ferenc Ficza Zengo Honda DNF

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