Rob Huff took his first win of the 2012 World Touring Car Championship season in race two at the Slovakiaring to leap into second place in the drivers’ standings. Huff finished ahead of Chevrolet team-mate Yvan Muller and the SEAT of Gabriele Tarquini.
The race was two cars short as the Arena Ford Focus of James Nash and the Engstler Motorsport BMW of Charles Ng were too badly damaged in race one to be repaired.
Pole sitter Stefano D’Aste got away well at the start to hold the lead ahead of the Chevrolet of Rob Huff, who jumped from fourth on the grid to pass team-mate Alain Menu who had started in second place.
D’Aste slid wide at Turn 2 which allowed all three Chevrolets past him and the SEAT of Gabriele Tarquini. Tarquini moved into third past Menu’s Chevrolet on lap three, with the Swiss driver retiring on the following lap with a front left puncture.
Rob Huff initially had to fight off the attack of Muller, but the pressure came off as the Frenchman was besieged by Tarquini’s Lukoil Racing Team SEAT in the later laps. Tarquini hit Muller on the final lap which sent Muller’s Chevrolet into a 90 degree slide, but the reigning champion gathered it up and kept the position ahead of Tarquini to finish second.
Tom Coronel finished fourth after starting 12th on the grid after late race pressure from Pepe Oriola’s SEAT, who was out of position after bogging down at the start.
Despite being caught up in a incident involving the SUNRED of Tiago Monteiro, the Zengõ BMW of Gábor Wéber and Stefano D’Aste’s BMW on lap two, Tom Chilton managed to pick up more points for Ford with tenth place.
The result is also provisional with Tarquini again under investigation by the stewards for the incident with Yvan Muller.
Huff’s win moves him up to second in the standings, just one point ahead of Alain Menu and 26 points adrift of Yvan Muller heading to next weekend’s race at the Hungaroring.