Having dominated qualifying Ronald Volker had to work a lot harder for victory in the opening A-Main at the DHI Cup, the Yokomo driver only just hanging on for the win as challenges from both Yannic Prumper and Marc Rheinard ended with them each suffering rolls. In the end Volker would cross the line over a second clear of Rheinard, but the Infinity driver had the fastest car on track and looked a much more threatening proposition than he had in qualifying, his two rolls costing him over 3-seconds. Recovering from an early roll, that allowed Rheinard through, Elliott Harper would complete the Top 3 ahead of Viktor Wilck, with Prumper opting to pull up and save his tyres after rolling his Yokomo a second time.
‘I got very very lucky in A1’, was Volker’s reaction after the race. The World Champion said, ‘I had a total lack of balance. No rear grip and too much front grip. I had oversteer in all the corners. I jumped the chicane and gave myself a body tuck. Luckily Yannic, Elliott and Marc struggled behind me otherwise I would not have won that main’. Having switched back to the progressive springs set-up he ran in Q3 for the finals, he said, ‘the track changed so that set-up was off. For A2 I will change the shock set-up and make a tyre change’.
Rheinard summed up A1 by saying, ‘the speed was there but its still hard to drive. It is not grippy enough overall’. A two time DHI Cup Champion, he continued, ‘Ronald was not as quick as in qualifying, and if I had qualified second it could have been a different result. I got lucky at the start when Elliott crashed and then when Yannic rolled I could catch Ronald but I made a mistake and rolled. He then had a mistake and I could catch him again but my car hit the bump and rolled’. Looking to A2 Rheinard said, ‘I will just drive my own race again and see’.
‘It was a bit harder for everyone to drive’, was Harper’s view on A1. The Schumacher driver continued, ‘I traction rolled which let Marc by and after that I drove more conservative. If I had pushed more maybe I would have got Marc back but it was still a good result’. For A2, the British driver plans ‘a few changes to stop the flipping’ and allow him get a better start.
Ronald Volker is Top Qualifier at the 18th running of the DHI Cup. Chasing an 8th victory at the Danish classic, the Yokomo driver wrapped up pole with a third TQ run in the penultimate round of qualifying. Going on to make it a clean sweep in the fourth & final qualifier and with reigning champion Viljami Kutvanen absent from Odense this year, it looks like it is Volker’s race to lose tomorrow given his form over the last two days. Behind the World Champion, it will be reunited team-mate Yannic Prumper who will start second ahead of Elliott Harper, Marc Rheinard and Markus Hellquist.
Commenting on the final two qualifiers, Volker said, ‘I switched to progressive springs all round for the third one and it felt more similar than expected. I wasn’t sure it was better so for the last one I went back to my Q2 set-up for the last one. It was worse, I had less overall grip so I will go back to the progressive springs again for the Main’.
‘It was super close’, was Prumper’s reaction finishing P2 in the final qualifier having been on the TQ pace for a time. He continued, ‘It came down to the last lap. I had some small mistakes at the beginning but in terms of time they were huge. We were all on the same pace’. Prumper said his improvement came from switching to a Montech body for the final qualifier which made his Yokomo ‘easier to drive’ and he will continue with it for the finals. Admitting, ‘I’m not sure where you can overtake on this track’ he concluded, ‘I hope my set of tyres keep performing (in the finals)’. Drivers have an allocation of just 2-sets of tyres for the entire weekend with no extra allocation for the finals.
Harper was positive about qualifying third managing to survive getting up on 2-wheels on the last lap. With very little between him, Prumper and Rheinard and a fastest lap almost identical to Volker’s, the Schumacher driver said, ‘Yeah, that was really good. We’ve worked hard to develop the setup further and it’s really good to be on pace with everyone again. We saw it at the EWS International before Christmas, but we found it a bit too late there. Now, we started off from the front foot and it’s been good to pace myself with Ronald, Marc, Yannic and Chrissi from the start’.
Summing up his qualifying, Rheinard said, ‘I changed tyre for the last one and it was a little better but there is still no grip’. The Infinity driver continued, ‘anything I change on the car doesn’t change the feeling on the track’. Asked about the finals he replied, ‘I will just drive. I am too slow so I am just going to drive my own race and see what happens’.
In the Super Stock class, Patrick Folman is Top Qualifier after he put in the perfect qualifying to TQ all four rounds. The Dane will lead away the A-Mains from 2016 Champion Tim Benson with Frederik Mikkelsen lining up third.
Ronald Volker picked up where he left off last night at the DHI Cup as he opened Day 2 of the event with another TQ run this morning in Denmark. Taking Q1 comfortably over Marc Rheinard, the Yokomo driver appeared to have an even greater advantage for the second round stopping the clocks two & a half seconds up on the Schumacher of Elliott Harper even after late contact with former Champion Viktor Wilck. Yannic Prumper would post the 3rd fastest time followed by the Xray of Markus Hellquist with Wilck fifth while Rheinard completed the Top 6 after a 4-second mistake in the latter half of the qualifier.
‘I changed the tyre prep only and it was an improvement’, was Volker’s reaction after Q2 adding, ‘the car had more control and better stability’. Planning to continue with the new tyre prep, the German said he will make a small shock adjustment for Q3. Asked about his incident with Wilck, he said, ‘Viktor wasn’t sure to open for me or wait for the straight, but I was already there and tapped him. Luckily my gap was big enough and it only cost me a few tenths but it cost him about 2-seconds’.
Summing up his first run of the day, 2 more qualifiers on today’s schedule, Harper said, ‘it was OK’. The multiple World Championship finalist continued, ‘at the beginning it was really difficult and the car was sliding a lot. It got better over the run but I think I will work on tyre prep for the next one’. Having dropped into the clutches of Prumper, he said once the car came in he could ‘pull away from Yannic’ with Rheinard’s crash also helping his result.
Prumper had the opposite problem to Harper. He said, ‘The first 2-minutes was ok but then I had absolutely zero rear traction’. Looking at team-mate Volker’s car, he added, ‘maybe I will copy Ronald’s set-up’. The German said his problem is that he has to do the ‘whole race on one set of tyres because of the two sets I got one is undriveable but maybe now the other set is finished too’.
While the official Xray team is absent from this year’s DHI Cup, Swede Hellquist did a good job of representing the brand with his P4 run. Reporting ‘traction is higher today’, the 22-year-old said he gambled on adding more rear traction to his T4 set-up and while the car was ‘super easy to traction roll’ he ‘managed to keep it down’. Admitting his set-up ‘is a risk’, he continued, ‘If I don’t take it I wont be fast’. For Q3 he plans to make further small change saying ‘I need to get quicker, Ronald is way too fast’.
Ronald Volker took a convincing TQ in the opening round of qualifying at the DHI Cup, the Yokomo driver having more that 2-seconds over the Infinity of Marc Rheinard. Having topped seeding, after a four hour break while qualifying got underway for Offroad, Volker led away the top heat pulling clear of the field. Behind, Elliott Harper ran second on track initially but was quickly caught up by Rheinard who eventually moved by the Schumacher driver with that the order in which they would stop the clocks after the 5-minutes. Behind the Top 3 Yannnic Prumper would survive contact with Viktor Wilck to post the fourth fastest time ahead of Yokomo team-mate Christopher Krapp with Awesomatix’s Patrick Hornum completing the Top 6.
‘After not running for 4-hours the tracton increased again and it was even harder to drive than before but I’m happy with a good clean Q1’, was Volker’s reaction to his TQ run. A 7-time champion of the DHI Cup, he continued, ‘I need to make the car easier to drive. I have a huge steering and corner speed and think this is what gave me the advantage but I need to work on getting more rear grip’.
Commenting on his first qualifying attempt, Rheinard said, ‘I have zero feeling in the tyre. It is like a boat sliding around’. His first DHI Cup with Infinity, he continued, ‘I know the car is good but I don’t know what set of tyres to use’, concluding, ‘it is not fun to drive’.
‘A good start I guess’ was how Harper described Q1. Making a shock set-up change to his car for qualifying he said ‘I’m not sure it was as good. It still had good corner speed but I’m going to change back for tomorrow’. Suffering a roll over and a crash in the chicane he said this was a result of the car being ‘a bit harder to drive’ as a result of the change. Reverting to his practice set-up he said, ‘Lets see what we can do tomorrow’.
‘Not so bad actually’ was Prumper’s reply when asked how he felt Q1 went. He said, ‘Viktor shut down in front of me and I hit him in the sweeper and lost 8/10th’, his deficit to Harper less than half a second. Changing his diff position after practice he said it made little difference and his car was ‘way too difficult to drive’ making it ‘difficult to make a clean 5-minute run’. For tomorrow morning second qualifier he said he needs to find something to make the car more stable in the rear.
Krapp reported similar difficulties with his car saying, ‘it is hard to keep it on 4-wheels for 5-minutes’. Feeling he car was set too soft making it feel ‘lazy overall’, he plans to stiffen it up for tomorrow by trying harder diff and shock settings.