Top ten WTCC drivers: 5th and 6th.

After asking you to vote for your leading drivers from the World Touring Car Championship season, the time has come to start the count-down to the driver you voted the top star of 2008.

Over the next five weekdays, we will be revealing the top ten in reverse order, with two drivers being revealed each day.

After asking you to give each driver a mark out of ten for their performances during the season, each drivers average score was calculated to decide the winner.

So today, fifth and sixth place...

WTCC Driver of the Year – Sixth place:

Name: Gabriele Tarquini
Team: SEAT Sport
Car: SEAT Leon TDi
Wins: 3
Poles: 0
Podiums: 3
Championship points: 88
Championship position: 2nd

Despite finishing second in the points standings, Gabriele Tarquini only takes sixth in your voting to decide the top WTCC driver of the season.

The Italian started the year strongly as he looked to take a first world title, scoring points in the first ten races of the season. That included wins at Curitiba and Brno and further podiums at Puebla and Valencia but Estoril was to mark a turning point as his championship challenge began to falter.

While team-mate Yvan Muller continued to wrack up the points, Tarquini's form dropped away and he failed to score in eight of the remaining 14 races. Indeed, his six points scoring finishes saw him only take to the podium twice more, both at Monza where he took a second and a win.

In the end, Tarquini had to settle for second in the standings, but even then he only just held off the challenge of Rob Huff as the Chevrolet man ended the season strongly and was just a point behind in third.

WTCC Driver of the Year – Fifth place:

Name: Tom Coronel
Team: SUNRED Engineering
Wins: 1
Poles: 0
Podiums: 1
Championship points: 35
Championship position: 14th

Tom Coronel moved to a new team for the 2008 season, swapping GR Asia for SUNRED Engineering – although his car of choice remained the petrol-powered SEAT Leon as opposed to the diesel model favoured by the works team.

One of the more popular figures in the paddock – thanks in no small part to his sometimes outrageous personality – Coronel only troubled the scorers on eight occasions as he went up against the might of the full works drivers from SEAT, BMW and Chevrolet.

However, having taken to the podium at Oschersleben, Coronel then secured one of the most popular wins of the season in the penultimate round of the year at Okayama. Having started down in 17th place for race one, an eighth place finish gave him pole for race two and he held off the challenge of Augusto Farfus in a dramatic battle to the flag.

Although 14th in the standings at the end of the season, Coronel was the leading driver from outside the works teams.

Monday: Who did you vote third and fourth on the list?

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Tom Coronel - SUNRED SEAT Leon [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Alain Menu
Michel Vaillant - Alain Menu
John Filippi - Sebastien Loeb Racing
Ryo Michigami, Honda Racing Team JAS [Credit: WTCC]
Rob Huff - Munnich Motorsport Citroen C-Elysee
Medhi Bennani, Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen, WTCC [Credit: WTCC media]
Nestor Girolami, Polestar Cyan Racing Volvo, WTCC [Credit: WTCC]
Tom Chilton, Sebastien Loeb Racing Citroen [Credit: XPB]
Tom Coronel, Roal Chevrolet [Credit: WTCC media]
Gabriele Tarquini, Lada, Moscow [Credit: WTCC media]
Nicky Catsburg, Lada, WTCC [Credit: WTCC media]
Nicky Catsburg, Lada, WTCC [Credit: WTCC media]
Jose Maria Lopez, Citroen, [Credit: WTCC media]
Jose Maria Lopez - Citroen Racing [credit: Florent Gooden / DPP]
Jose Maria Lopez, Citroen, [Credit: WTCC media]
Rob Huff - Castrol Honda Civic
Rob Huff - Castrol Honda Civic

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