May 30, 2015

Volker takes ‘surprise TQ’ ahead of Groskamp


Ronald Volker took a ‘surprise TQ run’ in the second round of qualifying on another cold day at the Yokomo Euro Touring Series in Luxembourg. The Yokomo driver overcame difficult conditions rising to the top of the timing screen where he would finish 4/10ths of a seconds up on HB’s Jilles Groskamp with Yokomo team-mate Loic Jasmin completing the Top 3 a further 2.2 seconds back.  A round that would see most of the front runners suffer spins, Q1 pace setter Alexander Hagberg was one of such drivers with the Swede pulling off after just a lap due to having ‘no traction’.


Volker said while ‘super happy’, he ‘didn’t expect to TQ on old tyres’.  ‘More hoping that Bruno (Coelho) or someone would deny Alex (Hagberg) from getting a second TQ’, he said it turned out ‘the track was completely the opposite to yesterday with absolutely no grip’ making his used tyres less of a disadvantage. Putting the lack of traction down to both overnight rain and a strong wind, him feeling the wind blowing dirt onto the track was the biggest cause of the problem, the reigning champion would suffer two spins. Describing his LRP powered BD7 as ‘(feeling) good for the conditions’ he added thanks to this he was able to pull back the time lost and ‘steal the TQ’.


On target for a TQ run for almost half of the run, Groskamp said ‘I was surprised to hear I was leading but I did notice a lot of people flying off the track’.  The Dutch ace, who felt his driving didn’t make the most of his PRO5’s potential in last night’s opening qualifier, said he knew the car was ‘very stable’ on old tyres and P2 for the round showed he’s competitive so he is ‘really happy’.  Having reduced the power settings of his Orion speedo, the former World Champion said this was a big help for the low traction.  Feeling he could ‘maybe have pushed harder’ he said the fact he didn’t could have been the reason for his ‘consistent run’.


Running new tyres on his BD7, Jasmin said the track was ‘not perfect’ and a combination of this and the fresh rubber left him with a ‘super loose’ car for the opening two laps.  Losing in the region of a second as result he said towards the end of the 5-minutes the car handled the conditions well. Living just half an hour from Mini Circuit “Ville de Luxembourg”, the multiple French National Champion said he hoped for better traction in Q3 and would judge whether or not to make a diff change based on the pace of the heats leading up to his.


Having pulled up in Q1 to save his tyres after an error, Bruno Coelho took his Xray to the fourth fastest time.  Setting the fastest lap of the round, the Portuguese driver described the run as ‘not perfect’.  Describing his T4 as ‘super good’ on lap 4 he got caught out by ‘the wind or something’ which spun him out while on the TQ pace.  Losing over 3-seconds as a result he said after that he just tried to keep the rest of the run clean for  the best result possible knowing he had a DNF from yesterday.


Serpent’s Viktor Wilck would set the 5th fastest time.  Running ‘carefully’ behind Groskamp, the Swede said ‘all of a sudden the car spun out’ and like Coelho the only explanation he could give was that it was due to the wind.  Describing the performance of his Speed Passion powered S411 as ‘not too bad’ he felt without the spin he had Top 3 pace.  Completing the Top 10, team-mate Marc Fischer said his S411 was also ‘OK’ but the conditions were difficult as the wind made it impossible to predict a spin adding ‘it just goes from you’.


Sixth for the round, Marc Rheinard described conditions as terrible. Pinning the lack of traction on the wind, the Tamiya driver said he ‘had no grip and no steering’ and just getting around the track was ‘a challenge’.  Despite the conditions, TRF team-mate Akio Sobue would enjoy improved form.  With a track of this size an impossibility in his home country of Japan, the star of  ETS Round 4 said while his TRF419 was a little loose and he made some little mistakes he is just driving the track better and better with the more mileage he gets.  Feeling more improvements are to come through his driving he might consider a rear shock set-up change but that will depend on the track conditions for Q3.


In Pro-Stock the second round would also see the defending champion post his first TQ run with Xray’s Marek Cerny topping the times from team-mate Jan Ratheisky.  Last night’s Q1 pace setter Nico Catelani would back up that performance with the third fastest time, the 20-year-old Italian Team Yokomo driver 9/10th faster than ARC’s Lars Hoppe who again set the fastest lap for the round. In Formula, VBC Racing’s Olivier Bultynck topped Q2 ahead of Serpent’s ETS Italy winner David Ehrbar.  Having TQ’d the opening qualifier, Champion Jan Ratheisky would retire from the run.




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