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Shanghai WTCC: Yvan Muller puts Chevrolet on top in Friday testing

Yvan Muller, RML Chevrolet, Shanghai WTCC 2013

Newly-crowned champion Yvan Muller set the pace in testing ahead of the World Touring Car Championship's penultimate event of 2013 at Shanghai.

The Frenchman hit the front early on, was gradually bumped down to fifth and then hit the front again with a 1m55.643s that ensured he and his RML Chevrolet squad ended the 30 minutes on top.

ROAL BMW man Tom Coronel came closest to denying Muller, getting to within two tenths of a second of the four-time champion's benchmark in the final minutes.

2012 champion Rob Huff meanwhile had to abandon his own late flyer - which included an overall best in the first sector and a personal best in the middle - due to yellow flags. He ended the session in 13th.

Coronel's late effort demoted Muller's stable-mate Tom Chilton to third, and the Tuenti Chevrolet of Pepe Oriola to fourth.

James Thompson meanwhile put Lada fifth, just over six tenths of a second down on Muller.

Honda factory pair Gabriele Tarquini and Tiago Monteiro locked out seventh and eighth, sandwiched by the Bamboo Chevrolets of Alex MacDowall and James Nash respectively.

Rickard Rydell, making his WTCC return in a one-off appearance for Nika, ended the session in 11th.

Newly crowned Scandinavian Touring Car champion Thed Bjork, also making a one-off appearance at Shanghai with the Polestar Volvo squad, was six tenths of a second down the road in 15th.

Pos  Driver              Team/Car                Time       Gap
 1.  Yvan Muller         RML Chevrolet           1m55.643s
 2.  Tom Coronel         ROAL BMW                1m55.836s  +0.193s
 3.  Tom Chilton         RML Chevrolet           1m56.051s  +0.408s
 4.  Pepe Oriola         Tuenti Chevrolet        1m56.156s  +0.513s
 5.  James Thompson      Lada                    1m56.269s  +0.626s
 6.  Alex MacDowall      Bamboo Chevrolet        1m56.476s  +0.833s
 7.  Gabriele Tarquini   Honda                   1m56.481s  +0.838s
 8.  Tiago Monteiro      Honda                   1m56.538s  +0.895s
 9.  James Nash          Bamboo Chevrolet        1m56.592s  +0.949s
10.  Darryl O'Young      ROAL BMW                1m57.016s  +1.373s
11.  Rickard Rydell      Nika Chevrolet          1m57.091s  +1.448s
12.  Marc Basseng        Munnich SEAT            1m57.219s  +1.576s
13.  Rob Huff            Munnich SEAT            1m57.327s  +1.684s
14.  Freddy Barth        Wiechers BMW            1m57.503s  +1.860s
15.  Thed Bjork          Polestar Volvo          1m57.738s  +2.095s
16.  Stefano D'Aste      PB BMW                  1m57.844s  +2.201s
17.  Tom Boardman        Special Tuning SEAT     1m58.187s  +2.544s
18.  Norbert Michelisz   Zengo Honda             1m58.603s  +2.960s
19.  Fernando Monje      Campos SEAT             1m58.701s  +3.058s
20.  Charles Ng          Engstler BMW            1m58.785s  +3.142s
21.  Franz Engstler      Engstler BMW            1m58.891s  +3.248s
22.  Hugo Valente        Campos SEAT             1m59.460s  +3.817s
23.  Mikhail Kozlovskiy  Lada                    1m59.572s  +3.929s
24.  Rene Munnich        Munnich SEAT            2m00.184s  +4.541s
25.  Filipe de Souza     China Dragon Chevrolet  2m02.122s  +6.479s
26.  Kin Veng Ng         China Dragon Chevrolet  2m03.334s  +7.691s
27.  Jeronimo Badaraco   Son Veng Chevrolet      2m03.570s  +7.927s
28.  Yukinori Taniguchi  Wiechers BMW            2m03.680s  +8.037s
29.  Ka Lok Mak          RPM BMW                 2m04.569s  +8.926s
30.  Henry Ho            Engstler BMW            2m05.374s  +9.731s
31.  Mehdi Bennani       Proteam BMW             -
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