Touring CarsWTCC

Menu Defeats Coronel To Win Race Two In Brazil

2 Mins read

Alain Menu came out on top after a race-long battle with Tom Coronel to win the second World Touring Car Championship race at Curitiba in Brazil.

Menu had inherited pole position for the race after Fredy Barth was stripped of his ninth place in Q1, allowing fellow Swiss racer Menu to move up into tenth and claim pole position for Race Two under the new reverse grid rules.

He wasn't able to immediately take advantage of this though, as he made a poor getaway. Coronel made a strong start in his ROAL BMW, jumping from third on the grid into the lead of the race. Gabriele Tarquini also made a good start to climb from fourth to second.

The Italian SEAT driver was soon hunted down by the four Chevrolets though, led by Menu. Menu made his move on lap three, with Rob Huff, Yvan Muller and Caca Bueno all getting past Tarquini on the following lap.

Menu soon caught Coronel, and dived for the lead at Turn 1 on lap 10. The pair made light contact, forcing Coronel off the road. The Dutchman was able to recover though to hold on to second, and kept the pressure on Menu until he took the checkered flag.

The leading duo were able to escape slightly as teammates Huff and Muller fought over third place. On lap 11 Muller battled his way past, but Huff refused to give up easily and contact was made between the pair. In the end Huff had to settle for fourth as Muller completed the podium places. Bueno ensured that the four Chevrolets finished in the top five by following Huff home.

Tarquini remained in sixth until the finish, with Tiago Monteiro coming home seventh. Danish drivers Kristian Poulsen and Michel Nykjaer were fighting over eighth – and the Yokohama Trophy win – when they collided at the chicane at the beginning of lap six.

This gave the category win to debutant Javier Villa, whose job was made easier when Barth crashed out of ninth on lap nine. Franz Engstler finished ninth despite making a very slow getaway, while 16-year-old Pepe Oriola scored a point on his world championship debut by finishing tenth. He also joined fellow Spanish rookie Villa on the podium having won the Jay-Ten Trophy.

Following the first round of the season Huff leads the Drivers' standings on 37 points, with Menu and Muller tied for second on 33 points.

Race result after 14 laps:

Pos Cl Driver Team Car Time/Gap
1   Alain Menu Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T 19:38.428
2   Tom Coronel ROAL BMW 320 TC +0.265
3   Yvan Muller Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +0.917
4   Robert Huff Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +1.321
5   Carlos Bueno Chevrolet Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T +2.409
6   Gabriele Tarquini SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI +4.512
7   Tiago Monteiro SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI +7.810
8 Y Javier Villa Proteam BMW 320 TC +16.894
9 Y Franz Engstler Engstler BMW 320 TC +17.571
10 Y Pepe Oriola SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI +20.361
11 Y Darryl O'Young Bamboo Chevrolet Lacetti +27.978
12 Y Aleksei Dudukalo SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI +31.428
13   Robert Dahlgren Polestar Volvo C30 +35.296
14 Y Kristian Poulsen Engstler BMW 320 TC +35.770
15 Y Yukinori Taniguchi Bamboo Chevrolet Lacetti +36.203
16 Y Marchy Lee KK BMW 320 TC +39.845
Ret Y Fredy Barth SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI 7 laps
NC Y Fabio Fabiani Proteam BMW 320si 7 laps
Ret Y Michel Nykjaer SUNRED SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI 5 laps
Ret Y Mehdi Bennani Proteam BMW 320 TC 0 laps
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