Marc Rheinard has wrapped up the first ETS race in mainland Spain with a win in A3 that would see the Infinity driver leave Madrid with a 2nd place. With Xray’s Bruno Coelho wrapping up his second win of the season in A2, the third A-Main was a showdown between Rheinard and ETS Round 2 winner Ronald Volker for the runners-up spot. With Rheinard leading away the field as Coelho watched on, the German was untouchable winning with ease from Volker who had to work hard to fend off Akio Sobue for the early part of the race. Also third in A2, Sobue would end up 4th overall ahead of Infinity team-mate Jilles Groskamp.
‘I lost the chance to win in A2 when I spun out but now for sure I would have been able to match Bruno’s pace’, was Rheinard’s reaction after the race. The only driver to challenge Coelho in qualifying by taking two rounds to end up tied on points with the reigning champion, he continued, ‘for sure I want to win but 2nd is a good result for our first race on asphalt’. Having made the podium on his ETS debut for Infinity at Round 2 but having never been in the mix for the win on that occasion, Rheinard said, ‘we are now in the right direction with the car and that is reflected in the team result here, we had four cars in the final and 3 of them ni the Top 5. We know now we are pretty close’. Looking to the fourth round of the championship next month in Italy, he concluded, ‘our result here makes us very positive for Riccione’.
Commenting on his A3 performance, Volker said, ‘right away I felt I didn’t have enough forward traction for some reason so I couldn’t do anything to stay with Marc’. Maintaining his second in the points standings with today’s result, he continued, ‘3rd is not the position I wanted before we came here but it is not too bad for the championship. We are still in the game but definitely have to beat Bruno the next one’. With Riccione ‘one of (his) favourite tracks’, the World Champion said he is confident ‘this time round we are closer to Bruno than in the passed’.
Again missing the podium, Sobue said, ‘it was too difficult to overtake. Ronald’s car was very loose but offline it was low traction so I could not pass. I tried to overtake him at the end of the straight around the outside but it was too dusty’. The Japanese driver said the weekend showed the potential is there with the ProtoTC and ‘next time I will be on the podium’.
In the Scorpion Power Formula Class there was a lot more at stake as the previous encounters produced different winners. Leading away the field, Top Qualifier Olivier Bultynck again let his lead slip away, getting out of shape and letting champion Ratheisky to the front. While the Belgian would mount a comeback, another mistake put amends to his chances of the win allowing Ratheisky to take his first overall win of the season. Infinity driver Jitse Miedema would complete the podium. In Pro Stock, Ratheisky was also in contention for the win and he certainly deserves any awards there are for effort. Having snatched the win from Xray team-mate Alexandre Duchet in A1 right at the line, the German went for it again but was too tight with his line and his T4 came to a sudden stop against the kart tyre marking the corner. Winning by 0.09, Duchet wrapped up his second win of the season with Ratheisky runner-up and Tamiya driver Christian Donath completing the podium.