Bruno Coelho has taken the opening round of qualifying at the Yokomo Euro Touring Series in Germany. Only 6th quickest in practice, the Xray driver topped the first of weather condensed timetable’s four qualifiers from top seed Marc Rheinard. Coelho came back from an early moment, when he lost the rear of his car, to TQ by 3/10ths from Rheinard. Less than 2/10ths further back, Naoto Matsukura completed the Top 3 while Infinity team-mate Akio Sobue improved on his practice form to post the fourth fastest time. Having seeded 3rd quickest, Viktor Wilck would crash and break on his third lap while Ronald Volker opted to pull off after a losing almost 4-seconds due to ‘a bobble’ on his opening lap.
‘A good start for sure’, was Coelho’s reaction to his TQ run. The reigning champion continued, ‘we changed the car a lot and it worked. The problem for us is we don’t have so much experience of the track. It’s not so flat and we don’t have enough feedback for what to do for this. I’m not sure we found the right set-up yet but we are on the right way’. On the car’s performance he said they need to improve how it starts out the run, ‘the first 3-laps were not good. The rear was loose and in the beginning I lost a lot of time. I lost the rear and it took on the dust on my tyres. The first two laps were horrible for me, normally these are the fastest laps’.
Describing his first qualifying attempt, Rheinard said, ‘for sure I drove bad at the beginning. I tried to go too safe’. Also having to trim his car on the straight during the start of the qualifier, something he said is normal for him to do, he said this time ‘it was way off’. He continued, ‘overall it is still a good result but championship wise the wrong person took the TQ’. On his car set-up, the German said, ‘I was missing some steering now so maybe I will change the shocks or droop for the next one’.
Calling Q1 ‘super close’, Matsukura said, ‘my car was pretty good in the beginning but after 2-minutes it started to understeer. The drop was too much’. Admitting to a few ‘small mistakes’ over the 5-minutes, the Japanese driver plans to try reduce the steering drop off by changing to a hard diff as well as make some changes to the rear end set-up.
8th after seeding, Sobue said, ‘In practice it was no good so we made a big change for qualifying and it was a little better, but it still pushes. I need more steering’. Asked what changes he planned for Q2, which brings Day 1 of the event to a close, he said, ‘I need to think what we can do’. Asked if he planned to try Rheinard’s set-up he replied, ‘no, we have different driving styles’.
Posting the fifth fastest time, Alexander Hagberg said, ‘the first 3-laps were good but then I lost traction. I don’t know why and need to find the cause of it’. Asked how bad the traction loss was, the ETS Spain winner said, ‘Much more than practice’ adding, ‘maybe it is tyre related’.
‘My car had no steering at all’, was how Yannic Prumper summed up his run to the 6th fastest time. The Yokomo driver added, ‘I don’t know what to make with the set-up. The rear is too stuck but Martin (Hofer) is working on my car and hopefully we can find something’. On the podium on the ETS’ last visit to Andernach, he said, ‘All the Yokomo guys are losing too much time in the first 3-laps after that it is actually OK’. Being Prumper, new Mugen signing Viljami Kutvonen would post the 7th fastest time ahead of Christopher Krapp, Lucas Urbain and Thimo Weissbauer.