Vila Real, FP1 : Muller masters the Vila Real streets in the WTCC
“I found a better balance than yesterday"
Yvan Muller showed his street fighting qualities to the full with the fastest time in Free Practice 1 for OSCARO.com WTCC Race of Portugal.
Muller, a four-time winner of the FIA World Touring Car Championship, took 2m00.749s to lap the 4.755-kilometre Vila Real street circuit as he continued to hone his Citroën C-Elysée WTCC ahead of this afternoon’s Qualifying shootout.
“I am still not sure about the chicanes here but I don’t have a choice so I have to go for it and that’s why I pushed,” said Frenchman Muller. “I found a better balance than yesterday. At the end of the session we were working more for the qually and we will see for the second session. We can still improve and that’s the target so now I have to analyse everything quietly.”
Reigning WTCC champion and Friday testing pacesetter José María López was second fastest, 0.084s slower than his Citroën team-mate with Norbert Michelisz the top Honda runner in third followed by Sébastien Loeb, Ma Qing Hua and Gabriele Tarquini. Local hero Tiago Monteiro was next as less than a second covered the top-seven drivers. Néstor Girolami was eighth, Hugo Valente ninth and Mehdi Bennani P10.
Tarquini’s session ended in dramatic fashion when he crashed into Tom Chilton’s Chevrolet. They were called to the race stewards following the incident, which inflicted damage to both cars.
|1||Yvan Muller||Citroen Total WTCC||Citroen||2:00.749|
|2||Jose Maria Lopez||Citroen Total WTCC||Citroen||2:00.833|
|3||Norbert Michelisz||Zengo Motorsport||Honda||2:00.909|
|4||Sebastien Loeb||Citroen Total WTCC||Citroen||2:00.964|
|5||Ma Qing Hua||Citroen Total WTCC||Citroen||2:01.353|
|6||Gabriele Tarquini||Honda Racing Team JAS||Honda||2:01.399|
|7||Tiago Monteiro||Honda Racing Team JAS||Honda||2:01.527|
|8||Nestor Girolami||Nika International||Honda||2:01.799|
|9||Hugo Valente||Campos Racing||Chevrolet||2:02.057|
|10||Mehdi Bennani||Sebastien Loeb Racing||Citroen||2:02.551|
|11||Robert Huff||LADA Sport Rosneft||Lada||2:02.684|
|12||Jaap Van Lagen||LADA Sport Rosneft||Lada||2:02.809|
|13||Nicky Catsburg||LADA Sport Rosneft||Lada||2:03.289|
|14||Stefano D’Aste||Munnich Motorsport||Chevrolet||2:03.319|
|15||Tom Coronel||ROAL Motorsport||Chevrolet||2:03.888|
|16||John Filippi||Campos Racing||Chevrolet||2:05.192|
|17||Tom Chilton||ROAL Motorsport||Chevrolet||2:05.399|
|18||Grégoire Demoustier||Craft-Bamboo Racing||Chevrolet||2:07.581|
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