Tiago Monteiro set the fastest time in the new Honda Civic as the World Touring Car Championship season finale got underway in Macau with a test session on Thursday.
The Portuguese driver was 0.620 seconds faster than second-placed Stefano D’Aste, who is challenging for the Yokohama Trophy title this weekend and arrives off the back of three straight victories in the class and three consecutive top fours overall in his Wiechers-Sport BMW.
Rob Huff, who holds a 35 point lead in the overall drivers’ standings, was third overall in his Chevrolet, 0.881s away from Monteiro. Mehdi Bennani was fourth in his BMW ahead of SEAT drivers Gabriele Tarquini and Pepe Oriola, with Chevrolet’s Alain Menu in seventh.
BMW men Norbert Michelisz, Franz Engstler and Tom Coronel completed the top ten. Michelisz currently heads the Yokohama Trophy, 12 points ahead of Oriola and 16 ahead of D’Aste.
Hong Kong driver Darryl O’Young was 11th fastest in his bamboo Chevrolet, but crashed heavily towards the end of the session. Yvan Muller‘s best time was ten seconds off the pace in the last of the three factory Chevrolets.