ROUNDS 17 & 18 – VALENCIA
DOUBLE VICTORY FOR SEAT ON HOME SOIL
The home race meeting resulted in a complete triumph for SEAT. Not only did the Spanish car manufacturer manage to win both races with SR-Sport’s Gabriele Tarquini and Tiago Monteiro, but Tarquini’s hopes to retain the WTCC crown were definitely relaunched.
In Race 1 the current world champion dominated the field claiming his fifth win of the season from the Chevrolet pair of Yvan Muller and Rob Huff.
With a brilliant overtaking on Andy Priaulx at the start of Race 2, Monteiro paved the road to his second victory of the year, leaving Muller, Tarquini and Priaulx battling each other for second place in a duel that eventually could prove crucial for the title fight.
Today Muller added two more podium results to an impressive series and stretched his lead once again. The 2008 champion scored 36 points, 14 more than Priaulx, but four less than Tarquini. The gap between Muller and Priaulx is now 25 points (which equates to one race win), while Tarquini is a further four points adrift. It will be a three-men final shoot out, although Rob Huff still has theoretical chances as he lies 69 points behind with 100 still at stake.
There is the same uncertainty in the Manufacturers‘ Championship that is led by Chevrolet with a 45-point margin ahead of SEAT Customers Technology. BMW lies third with a gap of 78.
With five victories in the six latest races Kristian Poulsen has climbed up to second in the Independents‘ Trophy, moving one and two points ahead of Stefano D’Aste and Darryl O’Young respectively. Sergio Hernández continues to lead, but he saw his advantage cut to 31 points.
Fredy Barth and Michel Nykjær shared wins in the Rookie Challenge, but Norbert Michelisz is still leading the Swiss by 4 points. Nykjær is third, only 18 points behind the young Hungarian.
Indeed anything can still happen in the two final events of the season, Japan and Macau.
The championship will resume after a 40-day break for rounds 19 and 20 at Okayama, Japan on October 31.