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Lopez set fastest time a shortened Friday test in Austria

Citroen speedy Jose Maria Lopez took the quickest lap-time in the Friday test session on the Salzburgring in Austria, the session was shortened by a red flag due to two cars stopped on the track. Yvan Muller finished 4th , Sébastien Loeb tip 6th.

The Citroën cars took the lead of operations from the start, with Yvan Muller improving twice the provisional best lap time (1.23.281, his best mark). At mid-session, though, Mehdi Bennani put briefly the Honda on top of the rankings (1.23.503) with Norbert Michelisz not far away (1:23.704), confirming the improvement of the Japanese cars.

One lap later, though, José María López, posted the best time of the session (1.23.101), almost equalled shortly after by Hugo Valente’s Chevrolet (1:23.128). The young Frenchman missed the top spot by only 27 thousandths of a second.

Bennani was eventually placed in third, only 1.5 tenths behind López, with Muller in fourth ahead of Tiago Monteiro, Sébastien Loeb, Gianni Morbidelli and Michelisz. Tom Chilton and Tom Coronel rounded off that top-ten who were covered by only seven tenths.

In TC2T, the session ended with the usual hierarchy, as Franz Engstler preceded again his own team-mate Pasquale Di Sabatino and John Filippi.

The session was stopped three minutes from the end, as both the cars of Coronel and Gabriele Tarquini stranded on the track, at the same spot.

The Dutchman’s Chevrolet suffered from a flat tire on the front left, while Tarquini’s Honda from a possible power-steering failure. Coronel was also (twice) among those missing the first chicane, together with Loeb, Valente and Engstler. (WTCC)

Pos Driver             Car           Time       Gap     Laps
 1. Jose Maria Lopez      Citroen            1m23.101s           15
 2. Hugo Valente          Campos Chevrolet   1m23.128s  +0.027s  12
 3. Mehdi Bennani         Proteam Honda      1m23.250s  +0.149s  15
 4. Yvan Muller           Citroen            1m23.281s  +0.180s  16
 5. Tiago Monteiro        Honda              1m23.476s  +0.375s  13
 6. Sebastien Loeb        Citroen            1m23.513s  +0.412s  14
 7. Gianni Morbidelli     Munnich Chevrolet  1m23.672s  +0.571s  13
 8. Norbert Michelisz     Zengo Honda        1m23.784s  +0.683s  13
 9. Tom Chilton           ROAL Chevrolet     1m23.811s  +0.710s  10
10. Tom Coronel           ROAL Chevrolet     1m23.831s  +0.730s  11
11. Gabriele Tarquini     Honda              1m24.030s  +0.929s  12
12. Rene Munnich          Munnich Chevrolet  1m24.606s  +1.505s  14
13. Dusan Borkovic        Campos Chevrolet   1m24.683s  +1.582s   9
14. Rob Huff              Lada               1m25.002s  +1.901s  11
15. James Thompson        Lada               1m25.323s  +2.222s   8
16. Mikhail Kozlovskiy    Lada               1m25.668s  +2.567s  14
17. Franz Engstler        Engstler BMW       1m27.501s  +4.400s  14
18. Pasquale di Sabatino  Engstler BMW       1m28.829s  +5.728s  14
19. John Filippi          Campos SEAT        1m30.482s  +7.381s  11

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