Having headed an Xray 1-2 in free practice, Bruno Coelho carried his form into controlled practice as he again set the fastest 3-consecutive lap time in the first of the two rounds. With team-mate Alexander Hagberg posting only the 10th fastest time, it was HB’s Andy Moore who was closest to Coelho’s pace with Michal Orlowski a surprise 3rd. For defending champion Ronald Volker, a driver renowed for being the benchmark pace setter in practice, he would only end up 14th fastest, two place behind arch rival Marc Rheinard.
Moving the rear arm position on his LRP powered T4 for the 4-minute run, Coelho said this gave him more traction and better mid corner steering on the low traction asphalt. Happy with the improvement made, the World Championship runner-up plans to only check over the car opting to leave the set-up unchanged. For team-mate Hagberg a combination of a set-up change and running new tyres left him with a car that was ‘not good’. He will revert back to his previous set-up and fit the car with a different set of used tyres for his run.
Having made some small adjustments to his PRO 5, Moore said his pace comes in after 2-minutes with the balance of the car not quite right at the beginning of the run. He said he is not sure if it’s his tyre prep or whether he needs to change the set-up to get the car to work the tyres more at the start. While he feels he doesn’t need to change the set-up as the ‘car is ok to drive’, he said looking at how Coelho is consistently quick he will make some small changes to try and reduce the deficit.
Orlowski was ‘very happy’ with his pace, the Schumachers running well here as team-mate Elliot Harper posted the 5th fastest time. The young Polish driver said they did a lot of work with the Mi5 in practice yesterday and it’s paying off now. Looking for more steering he will fit a rear brace to the car to get better rotation.
Harper was happy with the progress he has made since arriving in Austria, saying the team have been working really well together to get to where they are now. With ‘understeer, you’re probably hearing that from everyone’, his only issue the British driver said it’s now really down to him to put in clean runs in qualifying. Crashing heavily in the last practice he said it didn’t seem to affect the car as his fastest 3-laps came afterwards.
Serpent’s Marc Fischer would post the 4th fastest time. A track where the German went well last year, he said arriving with the set-up he used 12-months ago they have pretty much changed everything on the car twice to get it to work in the ‘not so easy traction condition’. Team-mate Viktor Wilck would complete the Top 6, the Swede echoing Fischer’s comments but encouraged that they have now found a good direction with the set-up.
Volker, who TQ’d and won this event when it made its first visit to Mattsee last year, said his pace reflected the fact he was running in new tyres but declared all would be fine for CP2. The German said he expected to be slightly off pace due to using the run for scrubbing tyres but said it is not normal for old tyres to be faster than new ones. Team-mate Prumper, like Volker and Hagberg was on new tyres and would post only the 8th fastest time but said despite that his BD7 was better following set-up changes made after free practice.
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Friday, May 1, 2015
Team Xray have laid down the early pace at the fourth round of the Yokomo Euro Touring Series in Austria as their drivers filled the top two spots on the time sheets after free practice. Racing at the temporary fahr(T)raum track in Mattsee, it was Bruno Coelho who set the fastest time ahead of team-mate Alexander Hagberg while last year’s winner Ronald Volker completed the Top 3. With low traction the order of the day, Round 3 winner Yannic Prumper would end the four rounds of practice only 6th fastest but for the other of this season’s race winners things faired even worse with Marc Rheinard only managing 20th.
‘Super good’ was Coelho’s response to how free practice had gone. The Portuguese star, who burst in the title contention in Italy when he finished on the podium, said the big focus has been on getting steering for the low traction. Describing his T4 as ‘now stable’, he said the steering is not perfect but its good and he is happy going into the two rounds of seeding practice. Commenting on the track, this being his first visit to the boards style track, he said the traction was similar to what he would be used to in Portugal, saying it feels ‘like a home race’.
Hagberg was happy with his early pace on a track he said is ‘definitely not (his) favourite’. The Swede is not a fan of the small size and low traction and while he of course wants to find more steering said for the conditions presented to him his T4 is working very good. In that quest to get more steering he will make some small changes for the first timed practice.
Volker wasn’t giving away too much information, the reigning champion said things were ‘good so far’ and he would ‘see how controlled practice goes’. The German said while the layout was the same as last year it is quite different to drive this time round due to the new curbing and low traction. The Yokomo driver said the traction has reached a certain point and does look to be getting better adding its never going to get even close to how it was in 2014.
HB driver Andy Moore would set the fourth fastest time with the British ace quietly upbeat about his practice runs. Having struggled in Italy he said he had a bit of a rethink when he got home and having done some testing in the UK he feels he came here with a good base set-up. Saying it is ‘unusual’ for him he hasn’t changed much on his PRO 5. Commenting on the track he said while the traction is ‘weird’ he said the new curbing and lower white track boards makes the track more forgiving. Team-mate Jilles Groskamp is struggling so far with the Dutch ace at a loss as to why. Having ran Moore’s set-up, the 2012 World Champion said he didn’t like it describing his car as if it was driving on ice. Feeling he is ‘3/10th of the pace’ he said the traction means even small improvements to the feel of the car can make for a big improvement in pace.
Showing the track is strong for Xray, Marco Kaufmann posted the 5th fastest time ahead Prumper. Breaking his Yokomo in the final free practice after a change to 2-degree tow-in made he car hard to drive, the German said he is still trying to find a suitable set-up for the conditions but he didn’t seem overly concerned by his current pace.
With Akio Sobue the fastest Tamiya in 7th just behind the Serpent of Viktor Wilck, lead driver Rheinard was at a lose as to why he had lost pace today. While his TRF419 ‘felt OK’ in the two timed free practice rounds yesterday he said this morning its ‘not good’. Asked what the problem was he said for the first seeding practice he would be putting ‘a lot of attention on the tyres’.
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Friday, May 1, 2015
Track Name – fahr(T)raum
Country – Austria
Location – Mattsee
Host – fahr(T)raum
Surface – Asphalt
Direction – Anti-clockwise
No. of ETS Races hosted – 1 (2014)
First appearing on the ETS calendar last year, Round 4 is something unique to the championship. Although classified as an outdoor race, racers don’t have to worry about what the Austrian weather brings during their time in Mattsee as the temporary track is covered by one massive marquee. Taking place in the small town which is situated 20km north of Salzburg, the race is hosted by fahr(T)raum, a museum that pays homage to Porsche car company founder Ferdinand Porsche and bringing the race here came about following a request from Porsche’s grandson Ernst Piech. A keen modeller himself, Piech wanted to bring a modelling event to the museum he set-up to tell the story of his grand father and putting the idea to Michael Klausner who owns the MK Racing model shop in Salzburg this is now the second year over 250 drivers have travelled from around the World to go racing on what is normally the museum’s split level car park – the track on the lower level overlooked by the pits.
The biggest improvement made following the inaugural running of the event 12-months ago is now instead of separate marquees for the pits and the track the entire ETS set-up is housed in one extremely large marquee. If just building such a ‘tent’ was not a big enough challenge, the hill side split level it covers meant that the supporting legs on one the top side of the hill had to be specially modified just for this event. In terms of the track, the layout very similar to last year, the black plastic track boards have been replaced with wood – the majority of it painted white after visibility issues last year – and new plastic curbing. Originally manufactured by a Japanese company for use in constructing drift track, the curbing which has been screw fixed to the asphalt is proving popular with drivers as riding them doesn’t unsettle the cars.
Friday, May 1, 2015
After just a short two week break the Yokomo Euro Touring Series is back in action this weekend (May 1-3) as Round 4 of the championship takes competitors to Mattsee in Austria. A venue that first appeared on the calendar last year, the event hosted by the fahr(T)raum Museum, a homage to Austrian automotive pioneer Ferdinand Porsche, brings a unique track to the world famous touring car championship. While classified as an outdoor asphalt race, the US boards style track is actually enclosed under one massive marquee that has been erected just for the ETS’ visit.
At an action packed Round 3, when the championship made a successful & long awaited return to Italy, Yannic Prumper took the win ending a 3-year winning hiatus and the Yokomo driver travels to Mattsee with new confidence. Last year the German pushed his team-mate Ronald Volker to the limit in A2 and then held off intense pressure himself from Marc Rheinard in A3 to finish runner-up behind Volker, so the track style is one which the 21-year-old relishes. With his quest for a fifth consecutive title taking a setback in Riccione when he failed to make the podium for the first time in 15-races Volker will be aiming to put the dramas of Round 3 behind him. Achieving his 10th ETS win in Austria last year his target this weekend is firmly on taking that tally to 12. After achieving his first ETS podium in Italy shooting him into title contention, Yokomo’s Meen Vejrak will be hoping he can go one better this weekend after describing Riccione as a break through race in terms of him adapting his driving to the BD7.
The star performer at Road Race Riccione RC Circuit Marco Simoncelli but ending up only third overall after contact with Volker in the opening two A-Mains, Bruno Coelho will be out to prove a point. Staying on in Italy, the Xray driver would take his first big victory by winning 1:10 200mm at the opening round of the Euro Nitro Series in Bologna. Dropping to fourth in the standings after finishing 6th at the third round, Coelho’s senior team-mate Alexander Hagberg goes into the event in need of a good result if the Swede is to stay in the title chase.
One of the three different drivers to win a race this season Marc Rheinard will be hoping the change of track will help his Tamiya team find the form he showed when he won Round 2 on carpet in Germany. Struggling as the championship moved to asphalt, his World Champion team-mate Naoto Matsukura not even making the A-Main in Italy, Rheinard can’t afford any more disappointing results as the second half of Season #8 kicks off this weekend. While Matsukura is not travelling over from Japan, new recruit Christopher Krapp should benefit from having had more time with his new car since Italy when he had his first outing with the championship’s most winning manufacturer.
Making his HB team debut at Round 3, two time ETS Champion Jilles Groskamp will be looking to build on the knowledge and experience gained from that outing as he makes his first visit to the contrasting fahr(T)raum track. Both his team-mates Andy Moore and Freddy Sudhoff, then driving for Awesomatix, made the A-Main in Austria and the 2012 World Champion, a strong team player who appears very happy in his new environment, should be able to get up to speed quickly between the boards.
After struggling in Italy with both their drivers failing to make the A-Main. Serpent will be hoping to bounce back to form with new signing Viktor Wilck and Marc Fischer. This was a strong event for Fischer last season as he finished 4th overall. Representing the TRF squad last year, Wilck qualified strongly in 3rd but didn’t have good finals ending up 10th.
In the Xray Pro Stock class Marek Cerny will be chasing a hat trick of wins having turned around a poor start to his title defence with victory in the last two outings. 2014 Pro Stock winner Jan Ratheisky is back but the Formula champion will be racing with an injury. Hospitalised after a fall while marshalling at a local race, the popular German was forced to miss Italy. Having just been cleared by his doctors to travel but still unable to prepare his cars himself due to his shoulder injury he has drafted in a mechanic so he can race in Austria. With Ratheisky feeling it will be ‘impossible’ to win in his condition, in Formula Serpent’s David Ehrbar will be aiming for a repeat of his maiden win at Round 3.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Last weekend (10-12 April) the Yokomo Euro Touring Series made a long awaited return to Italy with Round 3 taking racers to Road Race Riccione RC Circuit Marco Simoncelli. The 42nd running of an ETS race, while the weekend would prove hugely successful becoming the championship’s biggest outdoor event it would also give the rc community the chance to honour the memory of MotoGP rider Marco Simoncelli after whom the track is proudly named and make a donation to the Marco Simoncelli Foundation which is based just a few hundred metres from the track.
On the Sunday of the event the ETS organised a raffle to raise funds for the non-profit social welfare organisation with the three reigning world champions, Naoto Matsukura, Marc Rheinard and Alexander Hagberg donating bodyshells along with both Yokomo and Xray donating kits as prizes. A rider who had a huge following within the world of rc racing, with his 58 race number being carried by all the top ETS drivers following his tragic death in 2011 and defending ETS champion Ronald Volker carrying the famous 58 on his car over the weekend, the raffle would raise €650.
Following the event, ETS organiser Uwe Rheinard together with the series time keeper Hartmut Wenzel and press officer Oisin O’Briain visited the Foundation’s offices on where Marco’s girlfriend Kate Fretti accepted the donation. In acknowledgement of the donation, which will go towards the building of a day centre for the disabled in Marco’s home town of Coriano, the Marco Simoncelli Foundation issued a silver membership card to the ‘ETS Family’. Having built a link with the Foundation, both Kate and the ETS have pledged to form a greater collaboration for the benefit of the charity when the Euro Touring Series returns to Riccione next season.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Sunday, April 12, 2015