Yvan Muller bounced back from the disappointment of losing the 2007 WTCC to win the first round of 2008. But it looks like being another year of tiresome political wrangling over how competitive the cars are.
The turbo diesel-powered Seat Leons were able to cruise away easily from the petrol BMWs on the straights. Seat were permitted to develop a diesel engine last year which transformed their performance and almost allowed Muller to win the title.
BMW are working on their own diesel engine and on the strength of the first race they may want to bring it sooner rather than later. But with their cars at the front of the grid for the next round, which will being with a standing start which should favour the rear-wheel drive BMWs, they may find they have an advantage in the second round.
In which case, expect Seat to start complaining. Chevrolet’s performance was hard to asses, however, because their drivers Rob Huff, Alain Menu and Nicola Larini all crashed out.