Freddy Sudhoff holds a clear advantage over his rivals at the penultimate round of the Yokomo Euro Touring Series with the Awesomatix driver topping the first controlled practice by a considerable margin from Xray’s Alexander Hagberg and Bruno Coelho. Racking up his first ever ETS career win at the first outdoor race of the season in Madrid but then struggling at the next round in Austria, Sudhoff is back to form making the large fast flowing AMCA Apeldoorn in the Netherlands look easy. Laying down the fastest 3-consecutive laps by more than 3/10ths of a second, his rivals are openly finding it hard to match his pace with the bad news being the German is confident the hotter it gets the better his car is going to work. Unlike most races this year, there is no threat of rain interrupting the schedule with tomorrow, the main day of qualifying set to see temperatures sore to the to the mid 30s.
‘From the very first practice it’s being going very good and I really like the track layout’, was how Sudhoff summed up his strong start to the weekend. He continued, ‘I have made some minor tweaks to the car here and there, just some fine tuning really. We have also worked on the speedo settings because how you get out of the corners here is important. We are focus more on that for now’. Having the advantage both over 3-laps and over 5-minutes, asked if the expected hot temperatures was of any concern to him maintaining his advantage, he replied, ‘my electrics are running cool and the hotter it gets the better the cars gets’.
On his CP1 performance Hagberg said, ‘It’s a lot better today, I struggled a bit yesterday because I lacked track time as I didn’t come here for practice this year’. The Swede continued, ‘now the car is more on the pace but it’s a difficult track as it changes a lot with the temperature. We seem to be more competitive the hotter the track is and the weather for tomorrow is very hot so we are hoping that will favour us. Managing the tyre temperature for the 5-minutes in qualifying is going to be important’.
Winner here 12-months ago from the TQ, Coelho said, ‘CP1 was OK. We tried new stuff this round and it was not as good as before so we will try something different for the next one’. The reigning Champion added, ‘Awesomatix are strong here and we are trying to match them. Over 3-laps we look ok but over 5-minutes we drop a lot (to Sudhoff) so we have work to do for qualifying’.
Although pleased to set the fourth fastest time, Nicholas Lee described his performance so far as ‘up & down’. The Yokomo driver said, ‘I didn’t feel good with the car but it’s doing good lap times. Every round we have tried something new on the set-up but for controlled practice I went back to the set-up I was most comfortable with and now I will keep it the same and try to adjust my driving to suit that’. For his Championship points leading team-mate Ronald Volker the first controlled practice left him P8. The German was happy with the pace over the entire run but admitted his 3-lap pace was ‘down the order’ which he added was down to the car pushing too much, something they will try to rectify for CP2.
Setting the 5th fastest time, Awesomatix’s Lucas Urbain said, ‘Freddy and I knew since yesterday, actually since testing here, that this track was going to be good for us. It was every element that suits our car’. The French driver continued, ‘Freddy is easily fastest and I can fight for 2nd or 3rd. I can be on par with Bruno/Ronald, who ever it is going to be’. On his car set-up, he said, ‘Freddy came here running my base set-up and tried some adjustments on that so I tried them also but I have ended up going back to my own settings. I don’t need to change anything on the car yet’.
‘Better than the first one’, was Christopher Krapp’s response when asked about CP1, the Yokomo driver suffering a striped gear diff in the first run of the day (Round 7 of free practice). He continued, ‘the track changed a lot between runs so we are still tweaking our set-up. The whole team is a little off the pace and we need something extra’. Asked where they were losing time over the lap, the German said, ‘rotation is the problem. The track has lots of flowing corners and our car is too stable so this is our biggest problem. I will adjust the rear end now to try get more rotation’. Behind Krapp, former Apeldoorn winner Jilles Groskamp was the top Infinity driver ahead of Volker with Loic Jasmin and Viktor Wilck completing the Top 10.
In Pro Stock its was also Awesomatix that led the way as their cars filled the Top 7 positions in CP1. Fresh from being crowned EFRA’s European Pro Stock Champion, Olivier Bultynck was fastest from championship leader Simon Lauter with Max Machler third. In Formula, Serpent’s David Ehrbar was quickest from Bultynck and ETS Spain winner Jitse Miedema.
Name – AMCA Apeldoorn Club – Auto Modelbouw Club Apeldoorn Country – Netherlands Location – Apeldoorn (90Km east of Amsterdam) Surface – Asphalt Direction – Anti-clockwise No. of ETS Races hosted – 5 (2009, 2011-13, 2018)
The driver comments on social media sum up the sense of pleasure and enjoyment they get from racing at the Apeldoorn track. Hosting the ETS for a sixth time, having made its debut on the calendar 10 years ago, this is set to be the best RC venue to be in the World this weekend as Europe finally gets a run of Summer weather that won’t involve watching weather apps to see when the next rain shower is coming – this fact in itself adding to the atmosphere in the Netherlands. The large track is super smooth and has been presented perfectly by the AMCA club for the penultimate round of this season’s championship. Only three drivers have won here, Marc Rheinard topping the ETS ranking for Apeldoorn wins with 3 to his credit. Team-mate Jilles Groskamp enjoyed home success when he won on the track’s debut in 2009 and when the track returning to the championship last year after a four year break, it was reigning Champion Bruno Coelho who claimed the top step on the podium.
Bruno Coelho has claimed a ‘very important’ win at Round 4 of the Yokomo Euro Touring Series in Austria today, the Xray driver becoming the first double winner of the season. Only sixth at the season opener and also enduring a tough weekend in Madrid where he was only 7th, the reigning champion came into the weekend desperately needing a win to keep his quest for a fourth consecutive ETS Modified title alive. While practice saw the Portuguese driver a little off pace on the championship’s first visit to the tight & technical ERC Wiener Neudorf track, qualifying got things back on track as he secured the overall TQ, and bonus championship point, ahead of points leader Ronald Volker. Taking an easy win in A1 as Volker struggled for traction early on, he faced a much stronger challenge in A2 but resisting the pressure from the Yokomo driver he wrapped up his 16th ETS career win. Behind, Alexander Hagberg would t-bone Volker in the final dash to the line allowing Marc Rheinard through to second. The arrival of rain during the third round of mains, meant it looked for a time that Coelho was going to take even more points out of Volker’s lead. Counting one of two, Rheinard was on to take P2 but after a short delay racing resumed and Volker got the A3 win to secure 2nd with Rheinard completing the podium.
Commenting on A2, Coelho said, ‘this one was very hard. Volker was on my back from the start. I was pushing hard to try make a gap but three times I lost the rear which was a warning to slow down’. He continued, ‘Alex made a little pressure on Volker which gave me time to breath and get some space. Even if Alex didn’t crash Volker I had enough to take the win’. Summing up the win he said, ‘It’s been a very good weekend. It didn’t start good but we found a direction to go with the car and it was very good. For the championship this result is very important. I already have 2 throw away results so I needed this win and I need 2 more so we will work hard to achieve that at the next 2’.
Summing up A2, Volker said ‘we changed nothing after A1 and the car felt great again, maybe it was a bad set of tyres. I was all over Bruno but couldn’t make a clean pass. This time Alex wasn’t so nice hitting me quite hard and unnecessarily on the last lap but luckily I was able to win A3. The car was simply amazing. I didn’t expect so much performance out of the car after the rain. A big thank you to Hayato and Jurgen for the package’. Retaining his points lead in the championship, he said, ‘Congrats to Bruno, he did nothing wrong today. For the rest of the season we are still maximum confident to fight for wins and keep our lead in the championship’.
Reacting to his podium finish Rheinard said, ‘I hoped the rain would come’ – the Infinity driver having a faster time for his inherited P2 in A2 compared to that of Volker in A1 which had rain cancelled A3 would have given him second overall. He continued, ‘I still had a chance of second (overall) if I won A3 but after Ronald got a gap I was just driving around to be sure to make the podium especially with Alex gone out (of A3)’. The German concluded, ‘We had a good car this weekend but a podium was the best I could do after the bad luck in qualifying’.
Finishing fourth on tie break with Awesomatix’s Lucas Urbain, Hagberg said, ‘for the second final my car was very good and I could fight with Bruno and Ronald for the lead. On the last lap I misjudged the gap, there was no gap, and I collided with Ronald which cost me one position. In the last one I randomly spun out on the first lap which I can only suspect was the tyres. I didn’t change the car’. On conclusion the Swede said, ‘We showed great pace and I’m aiming to be higher at the next race’ – Round 5 of the ETS taking place at Apeldoorn in the Netherlands in 6-weeks time.
The trip to ERC Wiener Neudorf produced the first double class winner of the season as Simon Lauter claimed the win in Formula and Pro-Stock. The German wrapped up his first Formula win in A2 again finding a way by Top Qualifier and reigning champion Jan Ratheisky. Ratheisky would take A3 to secure second overall with Xray team-mate Matej Dobnikar completing the podium. In Pro Stock, Lauter had to work a little harder for what would be his third win of the season. Winning A1 from the TQ, in A2 team-mate Dominic Vogl took the win after Lauter rolled coming onto the main straight before recovery to take 3rd. This left it a battle of the team-mates going into A3 and battling for the lead Vogl would clash with Lauter sending both cars tumbling, allowing Ratheisky through for the win but resuming in second Lauter would take the overall win to continue Awesomatix’ reign over the Pro Stock class this season. Vogl would stand on the second step of the podium with team manager & ETS Daun winner Max Mächler joining them.
In the Infinity Masters class, Alexander Stocker could enjoy an early beer as he wrapped up his fourth win of the season. The former Pro Stock champion was joined on the podium by Toni Mateo and Werner Schmitzer. In 17.5 Stock, the top step of the podium was also decided in A2 as Top Qualifier backed up his A1 win with another in A2 to claim a popular victory. Winning A3, Tobias Baumbach would finish 2nd overall with the Top 3 completed by third place qualifier Dominik Ruf.
Chassis – Tamiya TRF 103 Motor – Scorpion Power System (handout) ESC – Scorpion Power System (handout) Batteries – LRP 5800 Tires – Volante (handout) Radio/Servo – Sanwa/SRT Bodyshell – Protoform
Remarks – Claiming his first Formula win of the season in ERC Wiener Neudorf , Simon put this performance down to going back to what he knows. Having tried a variety of set-ups and different parts over the opening rounds but not getting the performance gains he was after he has reverted to his old car from last season with an immediate effect on his results.
Remarks – Simon has been the man to beat this year in Pro Stock and on the ETS’ first visit to the ERC Wiener Neudorf he once again used his A800X Evo to secure the TQ and win number 4 to extend his lead in the points standings. Like the first asphalt round in Madrid, his car uses new low friction belts in combination with the low friction pulleys and utilises the carbon middle motor conversion set. The car has a set of Awesomatix alloy screws on the top side of the car and the package is completed with Zooracing’s DBX shell.