CHEVROLET RULES: HUFF AND MENU WIN BOTH RACES VALENCIA - Rob Huff scored his and Chevrolet's first win of the year in Valencia today, a feat repeated later in the day by team mate Alain Menu in the second race. The British driver had started...
CHEVROLET RULES: HUFF AND MENU WIN BOTH RACES
VALENCIA - Rob Huff scored his and Chevrolet's first win of the year in Valencia today, a feat repeated later in the day by team mate Alain Menu in the second race. The British driver had started from the second row on the grid and used the superior handling of his Chevrolet Lacetti to pick off the front runners one by one. After a few laps he moved into the lead never to be headed again. Alain Menu, who had started last of the qualified drivers, drove a stellar first race which saw him finish in eighth, good for pole position in the second race. In that second race he took the lead on lap 2 and scored his first win of the year, followed home by Rob Huff who had cut through the field from eighth to second. Nicola Larini had an unlucky weekend and finished in sixth and ninth. Chevrolet now moves up to second place in the manufacturers' championship, while Huff is first of the Chevrolet drivers in seventh.
Rob Huff (1st/2nd): "I had a good start in race 1 and immediately got ahead of the SEATs halfway down the straight. But then the diesels just towed past me again before the first corner, so I had to be content with fourth for a while. I was already pleased that I had made it through the first corner because in the previous three seasons my race had always ended right there. Yvan then ran wide in one corner which allowed me to get past him, then Jordi ran wide as well and both Gabriele and I slipped through. I then managed to pass Gabriele on lap 5 and stayed in control until the end. In the second race I could confirm the strength and speed of the Chevrolet Lacetti and bagged 18 points in one day. The Chevrolets had been on the pace all weekend, although it of course helped us to run light here. Today's victories are very much the result of the hard work the team has put in since we're back from Mexico."
Alain Menu (8th/1st): "I had a good first race and managed to profit from the many incidents ahead of me. The whole race some of the driving of the others was really on the limit and on a few occasions I nearly went off. I was lucky when Thompson closed the door on me but it was a little bit too late: I was through. I then passed Zanardi for eighth on the straight but he just pushed me onto the grass, nearly causing me to spin at to speed. I think this time he really exaggerated in his maneuvers as this was extremely dangerous at the speed we were doing. But I did get by him a few corners later, which put me on pole position for race 2. In the second race I knew I'd get passed by Andy at the start, but after the first lap I slowly started to reel him in to the point where I could pass him on lap 2. From then on it was just a matter of keeping the car on the black stuff."
Nicola Larini (6th/9th): "I had a brilliant start in race 1, moving up from 10th to sixth immediately. I had a good pace at the beginning but I waited too long to make any moves as I was sure something would happen between the cars fighting in front of me. After I had overtaken Muller I got some understeer, so he managed to pass me again. In the second race I just drove like an old man, but the good thing there is that I will be very light at the next race in Pau."
Ray Mallock: "It's fantastic to get our season underway at last. The fly-away events didn't reflect the true potential of the Chevrolet Lacetti, but today's races did. Hopefully we can build on this success and see more of it this season."