Citroen Racing’s Jose Maria Lopez was once again the fastest man on track in the second WTCC practice session around the Nurburgring Nordschleife lapping the circuit in his Citroen C-Elysee slightly less than three seconds faster than any other competitor on the circuit.
The circuit had been dampened after rain hit the track overnight, Lopez had shown his pace during Thursday evening’s test session and backed that up by going fastest in both free practice one and two on Friday on an ever-drying track.
He had slipped down to fifth on the timing screens until his final lap of the hour long practice session, he recorded a fastest lap of 9:41.561 just prior to the chequered flag coming out, he ended the session five seconds clear of the pack.
Hugo Valente and Gabriele Tarquini in their Lada’s made late improvements during the session. Tarquini beat Valente for second place after the chequered flag had already been waved. Lopez’ pace during the damp starting session was unpromising as it was expected to be wetter during the afternoon qualifying session.
After the news of the Honda’s being excluded from the previous two rounds, Norbert Michelisz was the best of the manufacturers drivers in fourth place. Tiago Monteiro finished in eighth and Rob Huff finished in fourteenth after he duffered another off ending his second practice session. This incident was not as serious or violent as his earlier crash in free practice one.
Nicky Catsburg was pushed back down to fifth in the third of the Lada Vesta’s due to his teammates’ late improvements during the session. He finished comfortably ahead of sixth placed Yvan Muller in the second of the factory backed Citroen C-Elysee.
Independents driver Tom Chilton finished in seventh, once again being the fastest of the Sebastien Loeb Racing team. His teammates Mehdi Bennani and Gregoire Demoustier completed the top ten behind Monteiro, who finished in eighth.
Sabine Schmitz finished the session down in fifteenth after sustaining damage to the front left of her Chevrolet Cruze run by Munnich Motorsport. She had an off at Aremberg, which is where she sustained her damage. Polestar’s Fredrik Ekblom and Thed Bjork both were unable to complete a timed lap during the second free practice session.
The results from free practice two are as follows:
- Jose Maria Lopez ~ Citroen Racing ~ Citroen
- Gabriele Tarquini ~ LADA Sport ~ LADA
- Hugo Valente ~ LADA Sport ~ LADA
- Norbert Michelisz ~ Honda Racing Team JAS ~ Honda
- Nicky Catsburg ~ LADA Sport ~ LADA
- Yvan Muller ~ Citroen Racing ~ Citroen
- Tom Chilton ~ Sebastien Loeb Racing ~ Citroen
- Tiago Monteiro ~ Honda Racing Team JAS ~ Honda
- Mehdi Bennani ~ Sebastien Loeb Racing ~ Citroen
- Gregoire Demoustier ~ Sebastien Loeb Racing ~ Citroen
- Tom Coronel ~ ROAL Motorsport ~ Chevrolet
- John Filippi ~ Campos Racing ~ Chevrolet
- Ferenc Ficza ~ Zengo Motorsport ~ Honda
- Rob Huff ~ Honda Racing Team JAS ~ Honda
- Sabine Schmitz ~ Munnich Motorsport ~ Chevrolet
- Fredrik Ekblom ~ Polestar Cyan Racing ~ Volvo
- Thed Bjork ~ Polestar Cyan Racing ~ Volvo
© Fay Tilley 29th May 2016.