Muller, Huff and Menu aim for third double WTCC title in a rowSpring is knocking at the door and so is the new WTCC season. The world's top touring car championship is ready to take center stage once again as the 2012 season kicks off in a week at one of the most legendary circuits, the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza in Italy.
Chevrolet has set its sights high for the new season: retaining the double (Manufacturers' and Drivers') World Champion crowns conquered in 2010 and 2011. Staying on top of any sport for three years in a row is not easy, but Chevrolet, the RML team and the three drivers are committed to achieving this goal.
The new season will see further globalization of the WTCC, notably with a first event ever in the U.S., increased competition with the return of a SEAT works team and the arrival of Ford, and more demanding reliability requirements where no engine changes are allowed.
Activity has been intense during the winter to further develop the Cruze: with the car now in its fourth year of race activity, the room for improvement is narrowing and now measures in the hundredths of seconds. The bulk of the work focused on the engine electronics, the cooling system and suspensions, and the efforts have been validated at recent tests in Valencia (Spain) and Donington (the U.K.), while the final pre-Monza shakedown testing is taking place today at MIRA, also in the U.K.
Three other Cruzes will be present at the season-opener in Monza: the privateer U.K. team Bamboo Engineering with Alex MacDowall and Pasquale Di Sabatino as drivers, and reigning Scandinavian Touring Car champion Rickard Rydell is making a come-back to the WTCC with the Nika Racing -managed car entered by Chevrolet Motorsport Sweden.