Rydell wins Okayama opener.

Monteiro was defending to try and keep fourth from Huff but lost out at the hairpin, with Thompson trying to follow him through but tagging the rear of the SEAT. Monteiro was able to keep the position but both cars being delayed backed up the following pack somewhat coming into the closing corners. Suddenly Yvan Muller, who had been trying to keep eighth ahead of D'Aste, found himself right in the mix and tagged Thompson, who had run wide and lost out to Farfus. The result was Thompson spinning off onto the grass and plummeting down the order, while Muller was able to continue without losing places and took the flag seventh to secure a place on the front row for race two. From nowhere, Tom Coronel came through on the final lap to take eighth and the race two pole, with D'Aste and Tarquini rounding out the top ten.

While SEAT has now taken the manufacturers' title, the drivers' fight remains a five horse race – albeit only in a mathematical sense.

Yvan Muller now leads Tarquini by eleven points and Rydell by 25, while Huff is 28 points back and Priaulx 30 – with 30 remaining. As a result, Muller could secure the title with a race two win if results go his way.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Rickard Rydell - SEAT Sport Leon TDi [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Jose Maria Lopez - Citroen Racing
Ma Qing Hua - Citroen Racing
WTCC, grid line-up, [Credit: XPB]
Yvan Muller - Citroen Racing
Yvan Muller - Citroen Racing
Yvan Muller - Citroen Racing
Yvan Muller - Citroen Racing
Rob Huff (GBR), LADA Sport, WTCC [Credit: XPB]
Nick Catsburg (NED), Lada Sport, WTCC, [Credit: Lada Sport]
Yvan Muller - Citroen Racing
Jose Maria Lopez - Citroen Racing
Tiago Monteiro (POR), Castrol Honda WTCC, WTCC [Credit: Honda]
Sebastien Loeb (FRA), Citroen Racing, WTCC, [Credit: WTCC]
Japp van Lagen (NED), Lada Sport, WTCC [Credit: LADA Sport]
Jose Maria Lopez (ARG), Citroen Racing [Credit: WTCC]
Norbert Michelisz (HUN), Zengo Motorsport, WTCC [Credit: Honda WTCC]
Jose Maria Lopez - Citroen Racing

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