January 9, 2016

Volker is Top Qualifier at DHI Cup


Ronald Volker is Top Qualifier for the DHI Cup, the Yokomo driver securing his fifth pole position at the Danish classic when he made it three from three in the penultimate round of qualifying.  Chasing a 7th win at the Odense based event, the German topped the times in Q3 from Xray’s Alexander Hagberg after an early mistake by Viljami Kutvonen ended the Awesomtaix driver’s expected challenge of Volker’s reign on proceedings.


‘It always nice to start off a new season with TQ’, said Volker of his latest pole position at the DHI Cup.  Having won 4 of his 6 titles as Top Qualifier, While he qualified 3rd when he won in 2012 and started second when he was victorious in 2010, on the other four occasions victory came from starting at the front of the grid.  Commenting on his Q3 performance, the fastest of his three TQ runs, he said ‘the car started quite edgy and for the first 2-minutes I didn’t feel comfortable but then it was on pace’. Setting the fastest lap he said despite how his BD7 2016 started out the set-up changes made ahead of the run were an improvement for the final 3-minutes having previous struggled in the latter part of the heat with the car getting loose.  With the car getting ‘up on 2-wheels’ a number of times he said Q4 will be a test of some changes to try & get rid of the edginess in preparation for tomorrow’s finals.


Over four and a half seconds off Volker’s pace, Hagberg said he started off well but for the second half of the qualifier his T4 became ‘very difficult to drive’. Having to open up for a recovering Kutvonen he ‘also lost time for that too’.  The European Champion said the problem is that they need to make the car more consistent over 5-minutes and this is something they need to try to find for the final qualifier which he believes if they can do will give him a good chance to race Volker for the win tomorrow. For team-mate Bruno Coelho and Marek Cerny it was a tough round.  Two mistakes for Coelho left him with a P9 while an error that hindered Meen Vejrak left Cerny 18th fastest.


‘Not a very good run for me’ was how Kutvonen summed up a disappointing run.  The Finnish star said going to a harder front spring brought on traction roll and with it striking on the second corner after starting the heat.  For his final attempt and P2 on the grid up for grabs between himself & Hagberg, he will go back to his Q2 set-up when he got to within 4/10ths of Volker.


After starting out with a P6 in Q1 but only 11th in P2, 2013 Champion Adrien Berntsen would run the fourth fastest time in Q3.  The Norwegian said after bad driving and a difficult car in Q2, a different tyre prep made this a little better.  Describing his Gizmo GZ-1 as ‘still a little too aggressive’, he said he needs to discuss his options with his mechanic & Gizmo co-founder Martin Christensen and find a way to get the car easier to drive.


Changing to a solid front suspension mount on his Yokomo, Meen Vejrak said he was ‘happier with the car’.  Running a Top 3 pace, on the sixth lap the former nitro touring car World Champion would get caught up in an error by Cerny.  Making contact with the BD7 it would cause a body tuck losing the Thai driver 3-seconds.  For the final qualifier Vejrak plans to change his tyre prep with his mechanic & Yokomo team-manager Robert Itoh also consider rising the cars diff position.

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Completing the Top 6 was Schumacher’s Elliot Harper but the British Champion was not celebrating the result. ‘I managed to stay on the track this time’ was his reasoning for the improved performance.  Describing the car as ‘really aggressive initially and then having understeer’ he rambled off a list of things he changed on the car adding ‘I don’t know what else to change to be honest’.  Currently 8th in the qualification ranking he needs another good run to book his place in the A-Main.

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