Portugal 2013: Muller takes race one lights to flag victory

Yvan Muller stretches championship lead with cool headed drive for victory at Porto
Yvan Muller took his fifth race victory of the 2013 FIA WTCC to extend his championship lead advantage over a strong looking Michel Nykjaer and a non-scoring Gabriele Tarquini.

Despite never gaining a huge advantage at the front – and having to survive a safety car period late in the race - Muller always looked in control ahead of team-mate Tom Chilton to take his fourth race one victory of the season, and help secure RML's second 1-2 of the 2013 campaign.

With the Frenchman's nearest championship rival Nykjaer finishing third, and Tarquini suffering a rare non-finish, courtesy of turbo issues with his Castrol JAS Honda Racing Civic, it means Muller is looking increasingly unstoppable on his crusade to a record-breaking fourth world title.

Pepe Oriola took a solid fourth on his debut with the RML-developed Tuenti Racing Chevrolet Cruze, while Rob Huff kept out of trouble to take fifth as top SEAT. James Thompson lost out a little bit at the start, but another top six for the Lada Granta Sport means that the Russian outfit is making progress and getting ever getting closer to the front.

The top BMW belonged to 'Flying Dutchman' Tom Coronel, who made up places from the start to take seventh on the line, just eight-hundredths ahead of Stefano D'Aste, who equalled his best result of the season.

Also a part of the battle for P7, Tiago Monteiro produced a great drive from a lowly qualifying position to take ninth in the closing stages, comign home ahead of Marc Basseng, who made a welcome return to the points but lost out in the last lap.

Bamboo Engineering's James Nash missed out on the points and settled for eleventh, with Darryl O'Young just behind at the chequered in twelfth. Campos Racing's Hugo Valente managed to bring his SEAT home to P13 ahead of Alex MacDowall, who has struggled in recent events.

Charles Ng brought the independent ROAL Motorsport BMW to the line in an uninspiring 15th. Fernando Monje couldn't get a strong race pace together and ended up 16th. Nikolay Karamishev is still getting used to his relatively new SEAT car and came home an uneventful 17th at the flag.

Freddy Barth was embroiled in the battle towards the top ten, but a spin late on meant he finished last but one in P18. Mikahil Kozlovskiy brought up the rear of the field, but has been having issues with his Lada during the weekend.

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Yvan Muller - RML Chevrolet Cruze [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]

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