Citroën’s José María López was the fastest driver during the official World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) test session at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, lapping the circuit in 8 minutes 38.027 seconds.
López’s fastest lap was 2.90 seconds faster than team-mate Sébastien Loeb around the 25.278 kilometre Nordschleife circuit, with the test taking place in reasonably warm and sunny conditions.
“Maybe I was a racing driver at this track in a former life because I felt really comfortable from the beginning even though I had only done 10 laps in a road car before,” said López. “The dry weather helped me a lot, I had good grip and was very happy in the car. I even impressed myself with the lap I did – I actually thought something was wrong with the time. Now I hope I am this happy after the race.”
Honda’s Gabriele Tarquini was fourth fastest behind Citroën’s Ma Qing Hua, with the experienced Italian posting a time 4.762 seconds slower than López. The fourth works Citroën of Yvan Muller was fifth fastest, a further nine tenths behind.
Campos Racing’s Hugo Valente was an impressive sixth fastest, just 6.557 seconds behind López and the top Chevrolet driver.
Rob Huff shared James Thompson’s LADA Vesta during the test as his car is still being repaired after his Marrakech smash.
On her first run in WTCC machinery, Sabine Schmitz posted the 13th fastest time, with the ‘Queen of the Ring’ 23.013 seconds slower than the leading time.
Mehdi Bennani did not use his regular Citroën during the test, instead taking part at the wheel of an Audi TT. The Moroccan driver was 14th fastest. Norbert Michelisz was also not at the wheel of his regular Honda Civic, instead competing with one of Zengő Motorsport’s SEAT León Racers.
|1||37||José María LÓPEZ||Citroën Total WTCC||Citroën C-Elysée WTCC||18||8:38.027|
|2||9||Sébastien LOEB||Citroën Total WTCC||Citroën C-Elysée WTCC||22||8:40.517||2.490|
|3||33||MA Qing Hua||Citroën Total WTCC||Citroën C-Elysée WTCC||17||8:41.489||3.462|
|4||2||Gabriele TARQUINI||Castrol Honda WTC Team||Honda Civic WTCC||13||8:42.789||4.762|
|5||68||Yvan MULLER||Citroën Total WTCC||Citroën C-Elysée WTCC||18||8:43.644||5.617|
|6||7||Y||Hugo VALENTE||Campos Racing||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||7||8:44.584||6.557|
|7||3||Y||Tom CHILTON||ROAL Motorsport||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||6||8:46.684||8.657|
|8||18||Tiago MONTEIRO||Castrol Honda WTC Team||Honda Civic WTCC||13||8:47.886||9.859|
|9||15||James THOMPSON||LADA Sport Rosneft||LADA Vesta WTCC||4||8:49.431||11.404|
|10||27||Y||John FILIPPI||Campos Racing||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||9||8:52.512||14.485|
|11||26||Y||Stefano D’ASTE||ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||13||8:55.799||17.772|
|12||12||Rob HUFF||LADA Sport Rosneft||LADA Vesta WTCC||2||9:00.571||22.544|
|13||8||Y||Sabine SCHMITZ||ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||7||9:01.040||23.013|
|14||25||Y||Mehdi BENNANI||Sébastien Loeb Racing||Audi TT||16||9:01.690||23.663|
|15||5||Y||Norbert MICHELISZ||Zengő Motorsport||SEAT León Racer||10||9:04.257||26.230|
|16||11||Y||Grégoire DEMOUSTIER||Craft-Bamboo Racing||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||11||9:10.138||32.111|
|17||26||Y||Stefano D’ASTE||ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||6||9:34.868||56.841|
|18||7||Y||Hugo VALENTE / John FILIPPI||Campos Racing||Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1||8||9:46.574||1:08.547|
|19||14||Mikhail KOZLOVSKIY||LADA Sport Rosneft||LADA Vesta WTCC||16||9:57.660||1:19.633|