Moscow WTCC: Monteiro dominates FP2, top Citroen just seventh

Honda’s Tiago Monteiro led the way in the final practice session at the Moscow Raceway, finishing ahead of Honda team-mate Norbert Michelisz.

Moscow WTCC: Monteiro dominates FP2, top Citroen just seventh
Tiago Monteiro, Honda Racing Team JAS, Honda Civic WTCC
José María López, Citroën World Touring Car Team, Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
Gabriele Tarquini, LADA Sport Rosneft, Lada Vesta
Tom Coronel, Roal Motorsport, Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
Tom Chilton, Sébastien Loeb Racing, Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
Thed Björk, Polestar Cyan Racing, Volvo S60 Polestar TC1
Hugo Valente, LADA Sport Rosneft, Lada Vesta
James Thompson, All-Inkl Motorsport, Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
Rob Huff, Honda Racing Team JAS, Honda Civic WTCC
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Lada’s Gabriele Tarquini was third, with Lada emerging as Honda’s closest threat for pole position while Citroen continue to struggle in Russia.

Rain began to fall just ahead of the session, with drivers quickly abandoning slick tyres for wets. Honda and Lada drivers were the only ones to hold the top spot during the session, with first Rob Huff fastest at the start, setting a time just under two-minutes around the 3.9km circuit.

Gabriele Tarquini then placed the Lada Vesta WTCC on top of the time sheets as the conditions began to improve, before Tarquini’s former Honda team-mate Monteiro swept to the top on a time of 1:57.078, which was soon beaten again by Tarquini by just 0.037 seconds.

Monteiro and Tarquini continued to swap P1 throughout the remainder of the session, with Monteiro ending up on top at the end of the session with a best lap of 1m55.547s, almost 20 seconds off the ultimate dry weather pace around the track.

Norbert Michelisz wound up second fastest, just over a quarter of a second behind Monteiro, with Tarquini dropped to third in the final moments.

The third quickest of the Hondas was Huff in fourth, while Hugo Valente was fifth in his Lada, just over a second from Monteiro’s time.

James Thompson emerged as the best privateer and Chevrolet driver, setting the sixth best time in the tricky conditions in the Munnich Motorsport Cruze.

While the fastest Citroen was that of Yvan Muller in seventh, with his championship leading team-mate Jose Maria Lopez tenth quickest, over two seconds adrift.

Neil Hudson / TouringCarTimes

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