Moscow WTCC: Yvan Muller beats Citroen team-mate Jose Maria Lopez

Yvan Muller converted pole position into victory in the first World Touring Car Championship race of the day at Moscow Raceway

Moscow WTCC: Yvan Muller beats Citroen team-mate Jose Maria Lopez

By keeping Citroen team-mate Jose Maria Lopez behind him, Muller halted a run of consecutive victories in the opening races of WTCC weekends from the defending champion that stretched back to Shanghai last October.

After maintaining the lead at the start, Muller was followed closely by Lopez, Gabriele Tarquini and Rob Huff in the early laps as the lead quartet broke away from the rest of the field.

Muller then began to pull away from Lopez, beating him to the chequered flag by just under three seconds to record his second straight win in the series.

Points leader Lopez was untroubled in second as Honda driver Tarquini concentrated on defending third from Huff, denying the Lada team a podium on home soil by less than three tenths of a second at the line.

Ma Qing Hua beat Tom Chilton into fifth at the start but could not stay in touch with the top four.

Norbert Michelisz was seventh ahead of Tiago Monteiro and Sebastien Loeb.

From 11th on the grid, Loeb enjoyed a good start to rise to eighth, but was passed down the inside by Monteiro on lap three.

After surviving opening lap contact with Tom Coronel that tipped his fellow Dutchman into a spin, Jaap van Lagen climbed up into the top 10 with a move on new Lada team-mate Nicky Catsburg.

Another incident on the first lap featured Stefano D'Aste running into the back of Mehdi Bennani under braking, taking both off track.

RESULTS - 16 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Yvan Muller Citroen Total WTCC Citroen 27m04.214s
2 Jose Maria Lopez Citroen Total WTCC Citroen 2.933s
3 Gabriele Tarquini Honda Racing Team JAS Honda 4.392s
4 Rob Huff LADA Sport Rosneft Lada 4.684s
5 Ma Qinghua Citroen Total WTCC Citroen 7.082s
6 Tom Chilton ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet 8.724s
7 Norbert Michelisz Zengo Motorsport Honda 10.394s
8 Tiago Monteiro Honda Racing Team JAS Honda 12.809s
9 Sebastien Loeb Citroen Total WTCC Citroen 13.463s
10 Jaap van Lagen LADA Sport Rosneft Lada 14.044s
11 Nicky Catsburg LADA Sport Rosneft Lada 18.239s
12 Hugo Valente Campos Racing Chevrolet 20.870s
13 Rickard Rydell Nika International Honda 24.517s
14 Mehdi Bennani Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen 33.791s
15 Gregoire Demoustier Craft-Bamboo Racing Chevrolet 41.523s
16 Stefano D'Aste All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport Chevrolet 1m06.562s
17 Tom Coronel ROAL Motorsport Chevrolet Not running
- John Filippi Campos Racing Chevrolet Not classified
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Moscow WTCC: Yvan Muller beats Jose Maria Lopez to pole

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