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Jose Maria Lopez has claimed victory in the opening World Touring Car Championship race at the Nurburgring after Tiago Monteiro crashed out while leading and collected Yvan Muller in the same incident.

After leading from pole position, Monteiro came under pressure from Citroen duo Muller and Lopez who had worked their way through the pack and moved up to second and third respectively after Thed Bjork pulled up on lap two with an oil pressure issue on his Volvo.

Under pressure from Muller, Monteiro lost control of his Honda and hit the barriers hard which forced his car back on to the track. With nowhere left to go Muller collided into Monteiro but both drivers appeared to be okay after the clash.

The incident saw Lopez get back the stricken cars and duly take full advantage with victory but was forced to fend off a late charge from Tom Chilton. Nobert Michelisz grabbed the final rostrum spot for Honda ahead of Rob Huff and Mehdi Bennani.

Huge Valente rose to sixth after those ahead of him fell from the running with Gabriele Tarquini, Fredrik Ekblom and Nick Catsburg also grabbing points while Sabine Schmitz notched up her first WTCC point in tenth.

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