Yvan Muller - Photo Credit: WTCC Media

Muller was in a class of his own in Race 1 - Photo Credit: WTCC Media

Yvan Muller continued his 100% start to his World Touring Car Championship title defence with a dominant victory in the first race at Valencia.

The Frenchman held onto the lead at the start after starting from pole, even though Gabriele Tarquini had a quicker launch off the rolling start. Muller used the inside line to retain the lead, and went on to cross the line nearly seven seconds ahead of Tarquini.

Tarquini had to hold off race-long pressure from the BMW of Tom Coronel, who received a black and white flag for making contact with the SEAT driver before going on to finish third. Rob Huff was close behind after taking fourth from Pepe Oriola on the opening lap, with the third Chevrolet of Alain Menu also getting past the young Spaniard later in the race. They could do nothing about Tarquini and Coronel though so would have to settle for fourth and fifth.

Oriola remained in the train behind Tarquini, and although the BMWs of Norbert Micheilsz and Franz Engstler closed up in the final stages, Oriola held onto take the Yokohama Trophy win on home soil.

Tiago Monteiro finished nearly ten seconds behind Engstler in ninth place in his Sunred-powered Leon, ahead of the SEAT-powered Leon of Darryl O'Young.

James Nash had been set for 11th for Team Aon after keeping Alberto Cerqui at bay, but Stefano D'Aste found a way past the pair of them in the final stages, relegating Nash to 12th. Alex MacDowall finished 14th, while Tom Chilton and Tom Boardman were 19th and 20th.

Pos Class Driver Team Car Time/Gap
1 Yvan Muller Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 13 laps in 22:53.924
2 Gabriele Tarquini Lukoil SEAT Leon WTCC 6.988
3 Tom Coronel ROAL BMW 320 TC 7.232
4 Robert Huff Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 8.982
5 Alain Menu Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 9.250
6 Y Pepe Oriola Tuenti SEAT Leon WTCC 10.614
7 Y Norbert Michelisz Zengo BMW 320 TC 11.854
8 Y Franz Engstler Engstler BMW 320 TC 12.202
9 Tiago Monteiro Tuenti SR Leon 1.6T 21.185
10 Y Darryl O’Young Special Tuning SEAT Leon WTCC 24.010
11 Y Stefano D’Aste Wiechers BMW 320 TC 25.349
12 James Nash Aon Ford Focus S2000 TC 30.104
13 Y Alberto Cerqui ROAL BMW 320 TC 30.282
14 Y Mehdi Bennani Proteam BMW 320 TC 30.685
15 Y Alex MacDowall Bamboo Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 31.373
16 Y Isaac Tutumlu Proteam BMW 320 TC 32.187
17 Y Gabor Weber Zengo BMW 320 TC 33.507
18 Y Charles Ng Engstler BMW 320 TC 34.050
19 Tom Chilton Aon Ford Focus S2000 TC 34.372
20 Y Tom Boardman Special Tuning SEAT Leon TDi 36.599
21 Y Fernando Monje Sunred SR Leon 1.6T 37.377
22 Y Pasquale Di Sabatino Bamboo Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 37.926
23 Y Andrea Barlesi Sunred SR Leon 1.6T 51.999
Not Classified  
Y Aleksei Dudukalo Lukoil SEAT Leon WTCC 6 laps