Photo: Citroën Racing

Yvan Muller leads disrupted final practice session in Morocco

Citroën Racing’s Yvan Muller was fastest of all in the second free practice session, just under a tenth of a second ahead of Argentina’s José María López, in a session which was red flagged due to an incident between Honda’s Gabriele Tarquini and Münnich Motorsport’s Gianni Morbidelli.

The three Citroëns were out in force from the start of the session with Muller running on his own while López and Loeb practiced slipstreaming each other around the circuit, until there was a incident with 22:15 left on the clock at the second chicane.

Honda’s Gabriele Tarquini had slid off at the corner and was slowly recovering onto the circuit, effectively off the track, when Morbidelli also came through the corner, running across the chicane and straight into the side of Tarquini’s Honda.

The session was stopped as the cars were recovered and the kerbs were repaired.

When the session began again, Citroën’s José María López took over at the front with a time of 1:43.500, but was outdone late in the session by Muller, setting a time just ten-thousandths of a second slower than Loeb had set in FP1 but in much cooler conditions.

The independent Chevrolets jostled for position behind with ROAL Motorsport’s Tom Chilton coming out on top in fourth, 1.5 seconds down on former RML team-mate Muller’s time, with Dusan Borkovic the fastest of the Campos Racing drivers with an impressive fifth fastest time.

Hugo Valente was sixth ahead of Lada’s Rob Huff. Mehdi Bennani ended up as the best of the struggling Hondas, who are suffering with straight-line speed issues at the track, but just like JAS Motorsport’s Tiago Monteiro in FP1, ended the session with smoke coming from the car.

René Münnich finished in the top ten for the first time in any session in the WTCC with his Chevrolet Cruze, with Norbert Michelisz completing the top ten.

Tom Coronel, thanks in part to the red flag delay, was able to join the session late on and shakedown his repaired Chevrolet Cruze.

In TC2T, Franz Engstler continues to dominate, setting a time just over six seconds off the pace in his BMW 320 TC, and one second clear of the SEAT of Petr Fulín.

The new three-part qualifying session comes up at 14:00 WEST.