SIX DRIVERS WITHIN TWO POINTS ON TOP OF THE CHAMPIONSHIP BMW cars continued their winning tradition at Oschersleben's Motorsport Arena, where Andy Priaulx and JÃ¶rg MÃ¼ller claimed one victory apiece. The results of today's WTCC Stihl Race of...
SIX DRIVERS WITHIN TWO POINTS ON TOP OF THE CHAMPIONSHIP
BMW cars continued their winning tradition at Oschersleben's Motorsport Arena, where Andy Priaulx and Jörg Müller claimed one victory apiece.
The results of today's WTCC Stihl Race of Germany shook up the championship classification that is now topped by six drivers covered by only two points. Priaulx and Yvan Muller on 33, Dirk Müller and James Thompson on 32, Rickard Rydell and Gabriele Tarquini on 31. Jörg Müller is not far behind in 7th position with 28 points.
The situation is also very close in the Manufacturers' Championship, where BMW re-claimed the lead from SEAT by a mere three points. The first race saw Priaulx taking a lights to flag victory his third of the season followed by Dirk and Rydell.
In the second race Jörg Müller imitated Priaulx, and claimed his first success of the year, while immediately behind him Augusto Farfus and Dirk fought a spectacular but fair duel for the second place. Unlike two weeks ago in Brands Hatch, the Chevrolet drivers could not squeeze into the point positions, however Robert Huff came very close to scoring in both races.
The Independents' Trophy races were both won by Tom Coronel, who has built a solid lead in the points.
The FIA WTCC is now facing its first overseas journey; the championship is heading to Brazil, where rounds 9 and 10 will take place on July 2 at Curitiba.
RACE 1 CONVINCING WIN FOR PRIAULX
Andy Priaulx capitalised on his pole start by shooting off the line and not allowing anyone to get close to him. He passed the chequered flag first with fellow BMW driver Dirk Müller 0.469 seconds behind and Rickard Rydell following at the wheel of his SEAT León.
Dirk weaved his way from 6th to 4th before the first corner and despite some contact with Rydell he managed to keep position. Farfus and Tarquini were involved in a scuffle in the first lap with a couple of overtaking moves happening before the SEAT man went through for 5th, followed by his SEAT team-mate Yvan Muller. The next three laps saw Priaulx, Thompson, Rydell and Dirk pull away.
The pack behind was the source of action on lap 5 when Farfus promoted himself back up to 6th. On the same lap Zanardi passed Morbidelli for 10th. The nose-to-tail tension continued with Dirk overtaking Rydell for 3rd on the first corner of lap 6 and then looked set to close the gap between himself and Thompson. Dirk's BMW Team Germany companion, Jörg, also gained a place by passing Yvan Muller for 7th.
Thompson conceded second place to Dirk on lap 8 and was also passed by Tarquini and Rydell a few laps later to eventually finish 5th.
The fight was on for the 8th position that meant pole position for Race 2. Yvan Muller was being put under great pressure from Zanardi. The Italian mounted an attack on lap 12 but hit Muller entering a corner. The former spun off while the latter continued further down the rankings in 11th. This handed pole to local lad Peter Terting. Farfus finished 6th overall after spectacularly keeping control of his Alfa Romeo as he sped across the grass following contact with Thompson. The Brazilian then narrowly avoided being overtaken by Jörg Müller.
The three Chevrolet drivers finished in a row with Huff, Menu and Larini taking 12th, 13th and 14th place respectively. Tom Coronel was 10th overall and won the Independents' category.
RACE 2 FARFUS IN A MÜLLER SANDWICH
Jörg Müller secured his first win of the season to the delight of his home crowd. He took the lead after a good start from second on the grid. Augusto Farfus had a solid race to finish 2nd ahead of Dirk Muller who took his second podium of the day.
From the pole Peter Terting but had a poor start, which resulted in him entering the first corner in 4th place. This is where he remained and eventually finished; the best of the SEAT drivers. Rydell, Thompson, Tarquini and Yvan Muller crossed the line in succession occupying 5th through to 8th place.
Winner of Race 1, Andy Priaulx, was overtaken by Huff and Yvan Muller on lap 2 before Yvan then immediately passed Huff for 8th and the final point. Huff's team-mate Menu went off on lap 3 and did not re-join.
Farfus, who was lying second and sandwiched between the two BMW Team Germany cars, was applying the pressure on Jörg but the lead man was un- phased. There was no margin for error however as, at the end of lap 6, the top three crossed the line within 0.438 of each other. Jörg pulled away slightly over the remainder of the race leaving Farfus to successfully fight off Dirk's attempted challenges.
Tom Coronel completed a positive weekend by securing his second independent win behind the wheel of his GR Asia SEAT León. He finished the race 12th overall.