Italian outfit N.Technology was fastest yesterday at their home track in Monza for the official FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) testing session, with all manufacturers present. Their driver, James Thompson, set the best lap of 2:00.918.
With ambient temperatures reaching as high as 36°C, the team focused on developing the Honda Accord Euro R Super 2000 as it took to the Italian track for the very first time.
"We had a very good day here in Monza with today's fastest lap," said Thompson. "It shows the constant improvements we are making. We didn't carry out as many laps as other teams because we're making big changes on the car between runs but it's worth it.
"We know it's likely that others will be more competitive than us on race days but we take today's result as a good representation of the progress we're making. Step-by-step we will be back at the level we are used to competing at."
The next WTCC rounds will take place in just over two weeks at the Circuito do Estoril, Portugal, on 12-13 July 2008.
WTCC official testing - Monza
1. James Thompson (GBR), Honda Accord Euro R Super 2000, 2:00.918 2. Tom Coronel (NED), Seat Leon, 2:00.940 3. Alain Menu (SUI), Chevrolet Lacetti, 2:00.946 4. Andy Priaulx (GBR), BMW 320si, 2:01.214 5. Jordi Gene (ESP), Seat Leon TDI, 2:01.298 6. Jörg Müller (GER), BMW 320si, 2:01.303 7. Yvan Muller (FRA), SEAT León, 2:01.314 8. Gabriele Tarquini (ITA), SEAT León TDI, 2:01.347 9. Augusto Farfus (BRA), BMW 320si, 2:01.390 10. Nicola Larini (ITA), Chevrolet Lacetti, 2:01.402 11. Felix Porteiro (ESP), BMW 320si, 2:01.477 12. Alex Zanardi (ITA), BMW 320si, 2:01.577 13. Richard Rydell (SWE), SEAT León TDI, 2:02.007 14. Tiago Monteiro (POR), SEAT León TDI, 2:02.325 15. Ibrahim Okyay (TUR), BMW 320si, 2:04.897 16. Aytac Biter (TUR), BMW 320i, 2:12.128