Marc Rheinard is the top seed for qualifying at the sixth & final round of the Yokomo Euro Touring Series in Austria the Tamiya driver took his Speed Passion powered TRF417 around the track in Traiskirchen in the fastest three consecutive laps ahead of the Yokomo’s of Hayato Matsuzaki and Ronald Volker, the latter traction rolling his LRP powered BD5 before he could improve on his CP1 topping pace.
Running a fresh set of Ride tyres in CP2, Rheinard said his car was a lot better than in CP1, when he ran used tyres, but added that he could still do with more steering especially at the hairpin.* Looking for a safe opening qualifier the World Champion said he will not risk changing anything for this evening’s Q1, the start to which was delayed after a heavy rain shower and gusting winds resulted in the sweeper at the end of the main straight getting wet on the outside line as the wind drove the rain in under the open ended roof structure of the unique venue.* Following the rain there has also been a major change in the track temperature and humidity which many of the top drivers believe with make for a tricky first qualifier due to the cooler conditions.
Hayato put his improvement in time down to better driving and is hopeful of Q1 as he too plans to leave the set-up on his BD5 as is.* Questioned about the possibility of high traction the Japanese ace said that having tested at the track last night he is confident they have a set-up should the conditions change significantly over the next hour to warrant a set-up change.* Team-mate Volker managed only two fast laps before his car flipped and went crashing into the barriers backwards resulting in the wing mounting point on the bodyshell being damaged forcing him to pull up.* The defending champion, who has TQ’d three of this year’s ETS events, said he will make a few small changes to his set-up for Q1 to try make the car just a little less aggressive.
Improving his time but not his 4th position, Yannic Prumper said the change to plastic shock caps on his Thunder Power equipped Yokomo did the opposite to what he expected, making it more aggressive. Proving to be faster the young German will continue with the plastic caps but will change to a thicker oil for his opening heat.
Reverting to the Protoform Speed 6 body in CP2 along with running a softer shock oil on his HB TCX Atsushi Hara improved to fifth fastest.* Overall better than in CP1 when he ran the LTC-R shell he said his TCX was fast but inconsistent with the car still a little too aggressive.* Team-mate Andy Moore, who didn’t post a time in the first controlled practice, said he just drove safe laps in the final practice which was good enough for the British ace to set the 7th fastest time ensuring he is in the top heat for qualifying.* Not sure how his car will perform over a 5-minute run Moore said he hopes that the rain that got onto the sweeper wont have effected it too much as that was one place his TCX felt pretty good.
Starting in between the Hot Bodies of Hara and Moore will be Reedy Race Champion Viktor Wilck.* Third fastest in CP1, the Swede said after the strong opening run that he had a few ideas he planned to try in final practice but they didn’t work and with his car very aggressive to drive he was unable to improve his time dropping to sixth overall in the seeding.* The third member of the TRF squad, Elliot Harper had a tough practice ending up 21st of the 76 Modified runners.* Describing his car as ‘like driving a 50 pence piece’ (a seven sided UK coin) the World Championship podium finisher said he does not really know what direction to take with his set-up.
For first time ETS title contenders Alexander Hagberg and Christopher Krapp CP2 didn’t see an improvement in time with the pair dropping down the order to 8th and 13th respectively.* Hagberg said while they have a good car on used tyres they still need to find a set-up that allows them to get the best from new tyres.* With most of the top runners finding improvement from running a heavier shock set-up Krapp decided to go that route for CP2 but the Gran Canaria winner said it was even worse that the set-up he ran earlier.* The German now plans to completely change his TF6-SP for Q1 by running a narrower from end and more rear toe-in along with going back to softer shocks.
In the Xray Pro Stock class reigning champion Martin Hofer bettered Marek Cerny’s CP1 to take the top seeding for qualifying ahead of the Czech driver.* The winner of two race this season, championship standings leader Zdenko Kunak managed to improve his time taking his Xray from seventh to third and more psychologically importantly ahead of his only rival for the title Oliver Franke who was fourth fastest.
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