Chevy Racing–WTCC

SONOMA, 21 September 2012: The World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) cars had their first taste of a US circuit today as they took the track at Sonoma, California, for the first testing session which opened the inaugural series event in the United States.
Alex MacDowall, at the wheel of a Bamboo Engineering Chevrolet Cruze, posted the best lap time, making it the first time the British outfit is ahead of the field in an official session.
The three RML-run Cruzes had a good working session, with the three drivers using the half-hour testing session to discover the circuit and to work on the initial set-up simulations. Yvan Muller was 4th fastest, with Rob Huff and Alain Menu in 6th and 7th respectively.
Today’s session took place in excellent weather conditions and the team will continue work tonight to fine tune the cars’ set-up ahead of tomorrow’s qualifying.
Chevrolet leads the Manufacturers’ Championship and could mathematically secure the title on home soil this weekend.
Yvan Muller (4th): “It was a session devoted to learning the circuit. Unfortunately, we could not use the entire 30 minutes allocated as the session was red-flagged and did not resume until five minutes before the end. The surface was quite slippery today and we have quite a bit of work on set-up ahead of us.”
Rob Huff (6th): “I went off into the gravel in my first lap and that resulted in a slow puncture, which I realized only a couple of laps later. That cut my session short. Eventually, I only did one fast lap. We still have a lot of work on set-up. No doubt this is a very interesting track, with a lot of uphills and downhills and many corners, which means you basically never rest.”
Alain Menu (7th): “I went through the entire working program drafted with my engineer and did eight laps, which is basically half a race. It’s a beautiful track, but there are definitely two or three very delicate corners and a lot of blind spots.”