FIA WTCC – Race Sonoma

by • September 12, 2013 • EventComments (0)3699

With the thermometer getting above 100 this weekend at Race Sonoma it made it very challenging for the drivers in the WTCC, which led to some great and very close racing. The two WTCC races over the weekend produced a pair of winners whose victories meant a lot more than the chance to spray champagne in the winner’s circle. In Race 1 featuring a rolling start, Tom Chilton, driving one of the Aon Chevy Cruze cars, qualified on pole position for the first time in his WTCC career. He then converted that pole position into his maiden WTCC victory, beating out a very determined Tiago Monteiro in the Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic who put in one of his best performance of the season so far.

Then, in Race 2, Gabriele Tarquini made a very happy return to the winner’s circle, nearly five months after his first victory at the wheel of the Honda Civic. His success in the race also tied up the Manufacutres’ title for Honda with three race meetings remaining in the season.

William de Braekeleer, Motorsport Manager Honda Motor Europe commented: “The Manufacturers’ title is a great reward for everyone who has worked so hard on this program, whether at the tracks or in Japan, Italy and Hungary. We are really happy in this first year we could get already two victories, two pole positions and twelve other podium results. This title is a nice present to be offered to Honda when we visit Japan in two weeks.”

Three other drivers shone during the California weekend: Alex MacDowall and Mehdi Bennani shared victories in the Yokohama Trophy and also claimed brilliant overall results: fourth in Race 1 for the Briton and second in Race 2 for the Moroccan. Norbert Michelisz claimed another podium result, the fifth for him so far this year. He managed to keep a determined Yvan Muller behind him for much of the race.

Muller moved another step forward towards his fourth WTCC Drivers’ Championship and only Tarquini’s victory denied him the mathematical certainty of the title. However the current margin of 143 points over the Italian means that is a long way from being threatened. Michel Nykyær also remains in contention, though only theoretically, as he lies 163 points behind Muller with 165 still to be awarded.

The fight for the Yokohama Trophy is closer than ever, with Nykyær and James Nash on equal points and MacDowall only 29 points behind the pair.

The championship will resume in two weeks for rounds 19 and 20 at Suzuka, Japan on September 22.

Race 1 Results

1. Tom Chilton Ray Mallock Ltd Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 13 laps
2. Tiago Monteiro Castrol Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic 1.6T 2.161secs
3. Yvan Muller Ray Mallock Ltd Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 6.534secs
4. Alex MacDowall bamboo-engineering Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 10.659secs I
5. James Nash bamboo-engineering Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 12.676secs I
6. Gabriele Tarquini Castrol Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic 1.6T 14.897secs
7. Tom Coronel ROAL Motorsport BMW 320 TC 18.530secs
8. Rob Huff All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC 21.561secs
9. Marc Basseng All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC 22.558secs I
10. Stefano D’Aste PB Racing BMW 320 TC 23.266secs I
11 Pepe Oriola Tuenti Racing Team Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 26.219secs
12. Tom Boardman Special Tuning Racing SEAT Leon WTCC 26.653secs I
13. Michel Nykjaer NIKA Racing Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 35.388secs I
14. Hugo Valente Campos Racing SEAT Leon WTCC 37.826secs I
15. James Thompson LADA Sport Lukoil LADA Granta Sport 40.811secs
16. Fernando Monje Campos Racing SEAT Leon WTCC 41.457secs I
17. Fredy Barth Wiechers Sport BMW 320 TC 41.459secs I
18. Franz Engstler Liqui Moly Team Engstler BMW 320 TC 41.971secs I
19. Charles Ng Liqui Moly Team Engstler BMW 320 TC 42.242secs I
20. Mehdi Bennani Proteam Racing BMW 320 TC 42.805secs I
21. Mikhail Kozlovskiy LADA Sport Lukoil LADA Granta Sport 43.997secs
22. Norbert Michelisz Zengo Motorsport Honda Civic 1.6T 48.934secs
23. Rene Munnich All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC 1:08.203secs

Retirements
Darryl O’Young ROAL Motorsport BMW 320 TC +5 laps I

Race 2 Results

1. Gabriele Tarquini Castrol Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic 1.6T 13 laps
2. Mehdi Bennani Proteam Racing BMW 320 TC +2.434secs I
3. Norbert Michelisz Zengo Motorsport Honda Civic 1.6T +4.099secs
4. Yvan Muller Ray Mallock Ltd Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +4.606secs
5. Tiago Monteiro Castrol Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic 1.6T +4.941secs
6. Tom Coronel ROAL Motorsport BMW 320 TC +7.735secs
7. Fredy Barth Wiechers Sport BMW 320 TC +14.165secs I
8. James Nash bamboo-engineering Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +17.865secs I
9. Marc Basseng All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC +18.746secs I
10. Stefano D’Aste PB Racing BMW 320 TC +19.234secs I
11. Tom Chilton Ray Mallock Ltd Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +20.858secs
12. Darryl O’Young ROAL Motorsport BMW 320 TC +22.239secs I
13. Alex MacDowall bamboo-engineering Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +24.265secs I
14. Hugo Valente Campos Racing SEAT Leon WTCC +24.436secs I
15. Fernando Monje Campos Racing SEAT Leon WTCC +31.098secs I
16. James Thompson LADA Sport Lukoil LADA Granta Sport +32.650secs
17. Michel Nykjaer NIKA Racing Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +32.794secs I
18. Mikhail Kozlovskiy LADA Sport Lukoil LADA Granta Sport +47.352secs
19. Rene Munnich All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC +47.553secs
20. Rob Huff All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport SEAT Leon WTCC +1 lap

Retirements
Pepe Oriola Tuenti Racing Team Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 11 laps
Tom Boardman Special Tuning Racing SEAT Leon WTCC 9 laps I
Charles Ng Liqui Moly Team Engstler BMW 320 TC 7 laps I
Franz Engstler Liqui Moly Team Engstler BMW 320 TC 3 laps I

Fastest lap
Gabriele Tarquini Castrol Honda Racing Team JAS Honda Civic 1.6T 1:48.278

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