SEPANG, Dec 15 -- Argentinian driver Esteban Guerrieri closed the gap of the championship points with a victory in the reverse-grid Race 2 of the World Touring Car Cup (WTCR) Race of Malaysia at the Sepang International Circuit today.
Guerrieri, who drove for ALL-INKL.COM Munnich Motorsport closed to within 10 points of the leader Norbert Michelisz after rising from ninth on the grid, while the Hungarian could only finish eighth.
"I really gave it my all. I visualised what would happen in the first lap and it happened. This was the race of my life. The car was awesome, and thank you to my team. We are a bit closer and we are still in the fight," he said.
In a race that run in heavy rain that ended under the new floodlights, Guerrieri recorded a time of one hour 28 minutes 45.146 seconds, 1.023 seconds ahead of PWR Racing's Mikel Azcona, and Johan Kritoffersson of Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen who came in third with 1' 28:46.514s.
At the start of the race, Guerrieri's teammate Nestor Girolami took the lead from the reverse-grid Pole Position driver Ma Qinghua at Turn 1, before took a lead by the end of the first lap.
But drama behind the 34-year-old driver forced a red flag and race was suspension due to heavy rain rain led to a number of drivers running off the track, including championship leader.
The safety car had just been called upon when Nicky Catsburg of BRC Hyundai N LUKOIL Racing Team, which had skidded off after contact with Yvan Muller, caught fire after returning to the circuit. Catsburg escaped without injury.
Malaysia's most promising motorsport star Mitchell Cheah of Hyundai Team Engstler showed an outstanding improvement as the best wildcard driver in Race 2, when he finished in 16th with a time recorded of 1' 28:56.420s.
His teammate, Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah also jumped to 22nd with a time of 1' 29:03.305s.
Race 3 will resume at 8.30pm.