Weather: Sunny and clear
Date: Friday, November 14, 2008

Farfus quickest again in first practice

Augusto Farfus followed up his fastest time from Thursday's test session for the FIA World Touring Car Championship finale in Macau by topping the timesheets again during Friday morning's first official free practice session.

The BMW driver proved that his German car manufacturer would likely be the marque to beat around the famous Guia streets as he just edged out his teammate Jorg Muller from Germany.

Muller had been fastest in the early stages of the session, before a lengthy red flag stoppage caused when independent runner Sergio Hernandez from Spain clouted the wall at Faraway after getting out of shape on the entry to the sequence of bends.

His Scuderia Proteam Motorsport car was left stranded on the track and race officials felt it was too dangerous for the session to continue without it being retrieved.

After a delay, the session resumed with Chevrolet's Nicola Larini briefly topping the timesheets, before first Muller and then Farfus set the quickest times in the closing minutes. In the end the two BMW drivers were separated by 0.234 seconds.

N.Technology's James Thompson maintained the strong form he showed on Thursday to set the third quickest time, with FIA WTCC championship leader Yvan Muller happy with how his session had gone as he focuses his efforts on the title.

"The car feels very good," said Muller, who was fourth fastest. "We are taking things step by step and not taking any risks. Of course I have to be conservative this weekend. I am not here to win the race, I am here to win the championship."

Outgoing FIA WTCC champion Andy Priaulx was fifth fastest after a quick lap late on, with Larini sixth quickest ahead of Menu and the other title contender, SEAT's Gabriele Tarquini.

-credit: macau gp