Paul Ricard WTCC: Bjork puts Volvo on top in final practice

Polestar Cyan Racing’s Thed Bjork put his Volvo S60 on top of the timesheet in the final practice session of the World Touring Car Championship at Paul Ricard.

The Swede finished ahead of Tiago Monteiro's Honda and the Lada of Nicky Catsburg, with the best-placed Citroen that of Yvan Muller in fifth.

Bjork jumped to the fore half-way through the 30-minute session, the first time the track has been dry for the WTCC this weekend, with any damp patches cleared up by the preceding European F3 race.

Very few drivers attempted qualifying runs as is usually typical in the final half of the session, with Honda instead opting to rehearse the new MAC3 time trial system with their drivers, which follows after qualifying this afternoon.

With no improvements late in the session, Bjork’s time of 1m30.069s stood to the end of the session, with Honda’s Monteiro his closest rival, after the Portuguese driver had finished fastest in the earlier session which was held in wet conditions.

The fastest of the Citroens, all carrying 80kg of compensation weight this weekend was Muller ahead of reigning champion Jose Maria Lopez.

The best placed of the Chevrolet drivers was Tom Coronel in ninth, who was also the fastest independent driver with Volvo's Fredrick Ekblom seventh.

Honda's Norbert Michelisz finished eighth while Sebastian Loeb Racing's Tom Chilton completed the top 10.

FP2 Results:

Pos. Driver  Car Time Gap
 Thed Bjork Volvo 1'30.069  
 Tiago Monteiro Honda 1'30.417 0.348
 Nicky Catsburg Lada 1'30.420 0.351
 Gabriele Tarquini Lada 1'30.515 0.446
 Yvan Muller Citroen 1'30.531 0.462
Jose Maria Lopez Citroen 1'30.787 0.718
 Fredrik Ekblom Volvo 1'30.945 0.876
 Norbert Michelisz Honda 1'30.976 0.907
 Tom Coronel Chevrolet 1'31.021 0.952
10   Tom Chilton Citroen 1'31.222 1.153
11   Mehdi Bennani Citroen 1'31.255 1.186
12   Rob Huff Honda 1'31.307 1.238
13   John Filippi Chevrolet 1'31.533 1.464
14   Rene Munnich Chevrolet 1'31.723 1.654
15   Hugo Valente Lada 1'31.731 1.662
16   Gregoire Demoustier Citroen 1'31.781 1.712
17   Ferenc Ficza Honda 1'38.551 8.482

Neil Hudson/ TouringCarTimes

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About this article
Series WTCC
Event Paul Ricard
Track Circuit Paul Ricard
Drivers Tiago Monteiro , Thed Björk , Jose Maria Lopez , Gabriele Tarquini , Nicky Catsburg , Grégoire Demoustier
Teams Citroën World Touring Car team , Polestar Cyan Racing , Honda Racing Team JAS
Article type Practice report