Crash.Net WTCC News
SEAT start in style in Brazil
9 March 2009
SEAT enjoyed the perfect start to its defence of the World Touring Car Championship season with a 1-2-3-4 finish in both races at Curitiba.
Despite the diesel cars being hit with a number of restrictions over the winter, they remained the cars to beat at the Brazilian circuit with a lock-out of the top five slots in qualifying being followed by a dominant display on race day.
The opening race turned out to be a somewhat processional affair at the front, with Muller leading away from pole and taking victory from Jordi Gene, Rickard Rydell and Gabriele Tarquini as the remainder of the field behind proved unable to find a way past the Leon TDis.
A heavy rain shower shortly before the start looked like working against the SEAT armada, but instead it played right into the team's hands as the BMW runners struggled for grip and in a reverse of race one, Tarquini led home Rydell, Gene and Muller to another lock-out.
“What happened is fantastic since placing four cars on the top positions of both races was inconceivable,” the Italian said. “It's an exceptional result. The rain possibly helped us in the second race, but our performance today has been very good.”
Tarquini now shares the lead in the standings with current champion Muller, who was also delighted with how the weekend panned out.
“It's been a very positive weekend, especially because we have been much faster than expected,” he said. “There are four of us SEAT drivers leading the overall standings and that's good, but it's a long season.”