Bruno Coelho took an easy win in the opening A-Main at the Yokomo Euro Touring Series this morning in Madrid. Top Qualifier on the championship’s first visit to Spain, the Xray driver had no problems pulling clear of the field winning from Marc Rheinard by 1.8-seconds. With the Top 5 finishing as they started, it was Ronald Volker who completed the Top 3, the Yokomo driver having a lonely race running in between the Infinity’s of Rheinard and Akio Sobue.
‘It was a perfect run I think’, was how Coelho summed up his text book drive. The reigning champion continued, ‘It was super cold but my car was very good at the beginning and also the rest of the race’. Setting the fastest lap of the race on his third lap, he said, ‘the first 5-laps I could pull away which shows our car works very good in cold conditions and I will try to do the same in the next round’.
‘Pretty OK start I would say, although to watch it was probably a bit boring’, was Rheinard’s reaction. Having enjoyed his best ETS qualifying result for some time, the German continued, ‘I lost a lot on the first lap, like 7/10th, and I need to make a perfect lap to match his (Coelho) speed or catch him’. Coming into the weekend with a new level of determination, the 4-time World Champion said, ‘overall I’m happy but A2 will be different story because it will be hotter conditions which suits our car better. I hope I can be closer and can put him under pressure more’.
Reacting to his race, Volker summed it up with ‘an absolutely boring final’. Starting third, the World Champion said, ‘I felt I couldn’t attack at the beginning and lost time to Marc in that period. At the same time Akio was dropping back behind me so after 1-minute I was just driving around’. He continued, ‘the car was fine after the first few laps but it was too late to do anything. My fastest laps at the start are too slow to the other guys’. Asked about A2, he replied, ‘I hope to be able to attack more. We expected the weather to be warmer so considering this we will make some small changes for it’.
In terms of close finishes it was the Xray Pro Stock class that took the honour in A1. A good battle between Xray team-mates Alexandre Duchet and Jan Ratheisky. With Top Qualifier Duchet leading for the entire 5-minutes in the final dash to the line Champion Ratheisky got a better run to the loop to steal the win by 0.028 of a second. Ratheisky would also play his part in the best race of the morning which came in the Scorpion Power Formula class. Starting third on the grid he would have a fantastic battle with Top Qualifier Olivier Bultynck as the swapped position but the Team Shepherd driver would come eventually out the winner as Ratheisky got out of shape on the final lap ending his challenge. Behind them Helge Johannessen would have a great race from 9th on the grid to finish 3rd.