Menu sets pace in Curitiba

Chevrolet drivers set the fastest laps in today’s 30-minute test session at Curitiba.

Eventually it was Alain Menu who posted the best time, beating his team-mates Rob Huff and Yvan Muller by one and two tenths respectively.

Gabriele Tarquini emerged as the best of the rest, setting the fourth fastest lap ahead the two bamboo-engineering Chevrolet Cruze cars.

Huff set the early pace with a lap of 1:23.631 that he improved to 1:22.916. However Menu managed to jump on top with only one minute left on the clock, with the time of 1:22.743. As for Muller, his 1:22.943 placed the reigning world champion in third place.

Towards the end of the session Tarquini posted his best lap of 1:23.572, followed by Alex MacDowall’s 1:23.769 and Michel Nykjær’s 1:24.261.

Tom Coronel ranked in seventh (and best of the BMW drivers) with a lap of 1:24.521, ahead of Stefano D’Aste (1:24.561), Tiago Monteiro (1:24.934) and Tom Chilton (1:25.105) who rounded off the top-ten.

Only minor incidents were reported, with Tom Boardman’s SEAT being stranded onto the gravel bed at the Esse de Alta. This corner proved to be especially difficult for the ROAL Motorsport duo of Coronel and Cerqui. There the Dutchman went wide during one of his first lap and later he made a 360° spin; his younger Italian team-mate also spun in the dying minutes and his car stalled facing the traffic for a few seconds, but luckily everybody managed to avoid hitting it.