May 31, 2009

Top Qualifiers dominate first A Main

Top Qualifier’s Jilles Groskamp and Rob Janssen easily converted their respective Modified and Pro Stock pole positions into victory in the opening A-Main here at the fourth round of the Much More sponsored Euro Touring Series. In Modified we had expected a great duel between Groskamp and World Champion Marc Rheinard but the German’s challenge ended as soon as he began. Leaving the line Rheinard’s car spun out, something he put down to not enough scrubbing in of his new tyres, and he collected 3rd place starter Martin Hofer with the two ending up on the grass at the first corner. This gave Groskamp an early break from where he easily controlled the race to cruise to Leg 1 victory.  The big battle of the race was between Yannic Pruemper, Marc Fischer and Andy Moore as the three fought it out for second with Pruemper heading the train. Fischer was the meat in the sandwich and put huge pressure on the young 15-year-old with his car clearly faster through the chicance but one lap from home the factory Corally driver dumped.  Pruemper held on for second with Moore, whose Hot Bodies Cyclone recorded the fastest lap of the race, completed the Top 3 while Fischer crawled home to finish 5th.  Rheinard pulled in after his first corner incident and now has the advantage of two fresh sets of tyres but Groskamp is aware of this and may save his second set of tyres for the third leg when track conditions will be cooler and the track will be at its fastest.

In Pro Stock the race went as expected with Rob Janssen’s Corally comfortably heading home second place starter Daniel Wohlgemuth.  Stefan Jansen completed the top 3. Champion Alexander Stocker didnt have the race he planned. The Hot Bodies driver lost traction off the line and got collected.  Stranded on the grass the German lost a lot of time and opted to pull in to save his tyres but with a number of other potential podium finishers also pulling up early he decided to rejoin so as to gain a higher placing, which could prove crucial if needed later in a tie break. He finished 7th. In Pro 10 the super fast Tim Altmann from Germany took the win from Ralf Boos who got the better of No.2 starter Rene Fischer.

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May 31, 2009

Steen tops Q5, Groskamp secures TQ

Kyosho factory driver Steen Graversen became the fifth different driver in as many rounds to TQ a qualifier here in Apeldoorn but it is defending ETS Champion Jilles Groskamp and his Tamiya that will start from pole.  Dane Graversen recorded the fastest 5 minute run of the weekend with his Orion powered Stallion thanks to a fresh set of tyres and cooler track conditions.  Having changed motor for the run Graversen is now much happier with the top speed of his car and said he tried to drive safely so as to not punish his tyres too much as he will have to run them again in the A Main.  Lining up fifth on the grid his aim is to try and hold station in the final for a Top 5 finish.

Heading a Tamiya 1-2 at the front of the grid, Groskamp was second fastest for the round but more importantly he was faster than his team-mate Marc Rheinard who he feels is going to be his toughest opponent.  Groskamp won the Dutch round last year at the MACH track and is keen to repeat a home victory here at Apeldoorn so we can expect a great duel between the Tamiya/Speedpassion pairing.

The big surprise of the weekend is Martin Hofer who is enjoying a superb international race debut with the new Yokomo BD5.  The factory supported driver will line up 3rd on the grid and crucially has two sets of fresh tyres at his disposal. The German GM powered driver has the potential to take the fight to the Tamiya drivers but says he will sit and wait to see how the race plays out as he does not want to jeopardise finishing on the podium.  Winner of the third round of the ETS in Poland, 15-year-old Yannic Pruemper will line up fourth on the grid but, like Graversen and former World Champion Andy Moore, has only one set of new tyres for the 3 legs of the final which puts him at a distinct disadvantage.

Yesterday Marc Fischer saw his main race car basically destroyed when it shut down just after the finish of the fourth qualifier resulting in his car being collected by Michal Bok’s Xray. Fischer who will line up 6th on the grid had a late night as he prepared a new chassis for today. The factory Corally driver said the new car is OK but doesnt feel quite as good as the much modified car he was using yesterday which featured a different top deck and lower bulk heads.  On the bright side the German does have two fresh sets of tyres and he thinks a podium could be on the cards. Also with two sets of fresh rubber for the triple A Mains is Kyosho’s Christopher Krapp. The young German feels it will be hard to overtake but has set himself a target of a Top 5 finish.

In Pro Stock Rob Janssen, who had already secured TQ honours yesterday, once again crushed his rivals. Racing for Dutch manufacturer Corally, Janssen has been joined today at Apeldoorn by Joeri Bal the man responsible for creating the RDX PHi chassis. Tamiya driver Daniel Wohlgemuth took second for the round and will line up on the number 2 spot on the grid but the German has said he will be focusing on maintaining his position rather than challenging the Top Qualifier who is proving the class of the field here on his home track.  Thomas Musial and defending ETS Pro Stock Champion Alexander Stocker make up the second row.

In the supporting Pro 10 category the super fast prototype of Tim Altmann will start on pole with Rene Fischer second.  Altmann is lapping in the 14 second lap bracket and his 5-minute run is a lap more than that of the Modified Touring Car Top Qualifier Jilles Groskamp.

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May 30, 2009

Moore tops fourth qualifier

Factory Hot Bodies driver Andy Moore has ended Tamiya’s domination of qualifying here at the Dutch Euro Touring Series by taking the fourth and final qualifier on day 2 of the event. After difficult runs in the second and third rounds, the former World Champion had little choice but to use up his second set of qualifying tyres so as to ensure himself a place on the grid for tomorrow’s big race. Despite a half spin on his second lap the new Sweep rubber allowed the Hot Bodies driver to take control and record a time of 19 laps in 5:05.48, the third fastest run of the day. In the same predicament as the British driver, Xray’s Bart Wubben was also forced to run his second set of tyres but this time, his first run on new tyres failing to net a good time, the Dutch National Champion managed a strong second place to put himself in strong contention for a place in tomorrow’s A Main.

Third for the round and fastest of the drivers running used tyres was Jilles Groskamp. With one round of qualifying remaining the defending ETS Champion holds the overnight TQ honours from Tamiya team-mate Marc Rheinard. Swiss driver Ronny Lnenicka benefited from new tyres on his car to take a surprise fourth for the round ahead of Austrian Hot Bodies driver Thomas Pumpler with Marc Rheinard, who ran the LTC-R which he found very slighly better than the Speed 6, completing the Top 6. In terms of overall qualification Yokomo’s Martin Hofer holds third, Corally ace Marc Fisher sits fourth with Moore fifth and Kyosho young gun Christopher Krapp sixth. Four drivers, Groskamp, Rheinard, Hofer & Moore remain in the hunt for the No.1 spot on the grid tomorrow. German Team Xray driver Steven Weiss, usually expected to be found mixing it at the front, had a miserable day with the former Euros Top Qualifier plagued by run time problems on this fast flowing track.

In Pro Stock Dutch Corally driver Rob Janssen has already guaranteed he will start his home race from pole as he put his name at the top of the time sheets for a third time. The big race in tomorrow’s Pro Stock A Main would appear to be for second as both Daniel Wohlgemuth, second fastest in the fourth qualifier, and defending ETS Champion Alexander Stocker say it will be hard to catch Janssen. The two Germans look set to renew the great battle they had at he opening round of the Much More backed series in Kastellaun, Germany. On that occassion Stocker got the upperhand in Leg 3 of the finals. One local driver that could well challenge them for a podium placing is Xray driver Wesley V Dijken who was third fastest in the closing qualifier of the day.

In the supporting Pro 10 category Germany’s Tim Altmann with his self designed car leads the way from the Speedline chassis of Rene Fischer also from Germany. Tomorrow’s schedule will start with a free practice session followed by the fifth and final qualification round.

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May 30, 2009

Pruemper joins TQ list

Yannic Pruemper is the third different Top Qualifier in as many rounds here in Holland after the star of the Polish ETS race opted to use his second allocation of qualifying tyres in Round 3. Fresh rubber gave the emerging 15-year-old German talent a distinct advantage over the international field allowing him to join his senior Tamiya team-mates Groskamp and Rheinard on the list of Heat winners. Changing to harder wishbones on his TRF416, Pruemper’s improved car finished five seconds clear of Groskamp who was happy to take the runners-up time on old tyres.  Rheinard made it a Tamiya 1-2-3 for the round despite a small mistake. Following consultation with his brother Toni, who is engineering Pruemper’s car, the World Champion will use the next heat to test the Protoform LTC-R bodyshell.

Martin Hofer once again showed the potential of the new Yokomo BD4 with fourth for the round ahead of Christopher Kraap’s Kyosho.  Bart Wubben completed the Top 6 and was surprised at how well his Xray T2 ‘009 ran on used tyres.  Having sat out the first heat, the Dutch racer was disappointed with his car on fresh rubber but now must make the call as to whether he will use his second set of qualifying tyres in an attempt to make it onto the A Main starting grid.  Marc Fischer was only seventh after his diff broke during the run while Andy Moore finished a lowly 11 after he rolled his Hot Bodies.

In Pro Stock Rob Janssen repeated his earlier qualification run to again top the round being the only driver to break 18 laps.  After two fifth place points from the earlier heats Daniel Wohlgemuth got his best run of the day to take second ahead of Dutchman Ronald Arts.

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May 30, 2009

Rheinard’s gamble pays off

Having sat out the first qualifier Marc Rheinard got the result he had hoped for as he took TQ honours for the second round of heats.  The German ran a time of 19 laps in 5:04.16 to claim the round from Martin Hofer who is looking very strong at the controls of his Yokomo BD5.  Rheinard appeared a little disappointed with the run, which was slower than his Tamiya/Speed Passion team-mate Jilles Groskamp’s Round 1 TQ time, describing it as only ‘OK’.  The World Champion said he had to drive easy to ensure he made the full run time.  Hofer was delighted with second run saying ‘doubt I ‘ll be using that second set of tyres before the Mains’. Hofer is full of praise for his new car and has it dialled in well for running on used tyres and needs just one more solid run to secure his place in the A Mains in which will be a strong candiate for a podium finish.

TOP driver John Bruins had a fantastic round taking third having opted to run his second set of permitted tyres. The Dutch driver also ran a harder rear spring and softer front shock oil which he said made his new Photon chassis more aggressive allowing him to knock 4 seconds off his opening run time.  Fellow Corally driver Marc Fischer once again ran out of steam on the final lap and had to settle for fourth. The factory driver is unsure why he is having problems with run time but says he may have to adjust his driving style next time out.  Factory Kyosho pairing Christopher Kraap and Steen Graversen completed the top 6 once again, this time the younger Kraap getting the better of his team-mate.

‘A stupid mistake’ was how Jilles Groskamp described his early exit from Round 2. Having TQ’d the opening round the Dutch ace put his Tamiya on the grass and was clearly annoyed with himself for the error. Andy Moore also had a non-finish for the round after he pulled up 4 minutes into the run after picking up a mysterious vibration in the steering.

In Pro Stock local driver Rob Janssen put his extensive Apeldoorn track knowledge to good use by TQ’ing the second round. The Corally driver benefited from fresh rubber having completed only a single lap in Round 1 to scrub in the tyres. Defending Champion Alexander Stocker who also had new tyres claimed P2, over 5 seconds adrift, but the German said he was pleased with the result given Janssen’s experience here. Vasco Christiaanse took third a result he was disappointed with.  The Hot Bodies driver said his car felt good but lacked power.  The Dutch driver is hoping that fitting a second cooling fan to his motor will help.  Currently it is 24 degrees here with a track temperature of 46.

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