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Vila Real, FP1 : Muller masters the Vila Real streets in the WTCC

“I found a better balance than yesterday"

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By Paul Gombeaud

11 July 2015 - 11:10
Vila Real, FP1 : Muller masters the (...)

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.

Pos. Driver Team Car Time
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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