Photo: WTCC Media

Yvan Muller fastest in first Valencia practice

Chevrolet driver Yvan Muller was fastest in the first practice session at Valencia, leading team-mates Alain Menu and Rob Huff, whilst there were several off-track excursions for some of the front runners.

Muller’s best lap in the session of 1:42.936 was just under two-tenths of a second off of Jordi Gené’s so far unbeaten qualifying lap record from 2005. The Frenchman was half a second quicker than Alain Menu, with Rob Huff just three-hundredths further back, locking out the top three spots for Chevrolet.

Tom Coronel was the next best in fourth, with Robert Dahlgren an impressive fifth considering it’s his first time at the track and also as the Swedish driver only set five laps before spinning off into the gravel just after Turn 1.

Dahlgren wasn’t the only one to have difficulties at that corner, as the championship’s most recent race winner Franz Engstler was next to slide off in the gravel, soon followed by SUNRED’s Gabriele Tarquini.

Despite his error, Engstler ended up as the fastest independent driver in eighth overall, just ahead of Norbert Michelisz and Michel Nykjaer.

Series newcomer David Sigacev was 19th fastest of the 20 cars that took part in the session, with Darryl O’Young’s Bamboo Chevrolet unable to take part due to a mechanical problem.

The next free practice session is at 11:30 CET.