Coronel’s fastest time was set right at the end of the session, replacing Yvan Muller’s Chevrolet Cruze (2:08.334) at the top of the timesheet, with Pepe Oriola third fastest (2:08.385) on his debut in the Tuenti Racing Chevrolet.
Four different manufacturers – BMW, Chevrolet, Honda and SEAT – were represented in the top seven places, with less than six-tenths of a second separating those seven drivers. Behind the top three, fourth-placed Gabriele Tarquini (2:08.441) was the best of the Castrol Honda team drivers with Robert Huff (2:08722) seventh in a SEAT León.
Several drivers were caught out on the tight street circuit during the session. The LADA Granta of Mikhail Kozlovskiy sported a damaged rear wheel after brushing one of the concrete walls that line the track, while Hugo Valente’s SEAT hit the barriers at Turn 4 after the French driver appeared to miss his braking point for the corner. The RML Chevrolet of Tom Chilton was another car to encounter the track’s barriers when the Englishman slid sideways into the barrier at Turn 1.
Free Practice 2 is due to start at 11.30 local time, with the extended Qualifying session scheduled for 15.00.