Qualifying has begun in Cordoba, the sun has come out there is plenty of action on the track. The organisers are running 2 rounds for every driver with the drivers in the heats 1-6 getting both their rounds in the morning and the faster heats 7-12 (in reverse) getting their runs in the morning, with this separated format being carried forward to tomorrows 2nd day of qualifying.
The 2 rounds of qualifying have been completed for heats 1-6 and it was German (French but using German license) Serpent 960 driver Alain Levy that took the fastest time in the morning session completing 31 laps in 10:11.243 with his closest rival being Marcio Michele Salvagno, on a 30 laps in 10:05.578 with the 3rd fastest time now in the hands of Gabriel Lacanna 4 seconds behind 2nd.
Heats 1-6 – Results after 2 rounds (not overall after 2 rounds):
1. LEVY ALAIN – 31 Laps in 10:11.24
2. MARCIO MICHELE SALVAGNO – 30 Laps in 10:05.58
3. GABRIEL LACANNA – 30 Laps in 10:09.12
4. OMAR FORMISANO – 30 Laps in 10:14.45
5. THEO CHRISTOFI – 30 Laps in 10:14.66
6. MARCOS FERNANDO CORBANI – 30 Laps in 10:15.38
7. RENATO PAIVA – 30 Laps in 10:16.38
8. ANDY LEDGARD – 30 Laps in 10:17.69
9. GREG ESSER – 30 Laps in 10:18.10
10. PEDRO CASTRO – 29 Laps in 09:37.14
11. TOOMS ROELOF – 29 Laps in 09:41.66
12. FRANCO DAMICO – 29 Laps in 09:51.05
13 ALEJANDRO CALENS – 29 Laps in 09:58.11
14. HERMAN LEBENBAUM – 29 Laps in 10:00.43
15. ANDRES CALENS – 29 Laps in 10:06.26
Round 1 and 2 for heats 7-12 will begin at 15:00 local time. Our gallery has lots of new pictures so be sure to check that out here.
Todays final, and only, practice round has been completed under dry but cool conditions with Italy’s Stefano Solaroli coming out out on top with the fastest laptime of 17.725 seconds. With not all of the drivers pushing hard and still using the session to test, fastest laptimes are a better indicator for showing pace than the practice heat results, yet also take into account that some racers are going to have to make 2 stops and so their pace would need to be quicker. The 2nd fastest today is the Motonica racer and pre Worlds runner up Dario Balestri with a 17.750 second lap with Michele Romagnoli ending up with the 3rd fastest time.
Mondays fastest practice laps
1. Stefano Solaroli – 17.725
2. Dario Balestri – 17.750
3. Michele Romagnoli – 17.790
4. Francesco Tironi – 17.829
5. Lamberto Collari – 17.858
6. Robert Pietsch – 17.880
7. Adrien Bertin – 17.884
8. Takaaki Shimo – 17.887
9. Andrea Cristiani – 17.906
10. Yuya Sahashi – 17.912
11. Michael Salven – 17.950
12. Andrea Pirani – 17.963
13. Massimo Fantini – 17.977
14. Hideo Kitazawa – 18.050
15. Steven Cuypers – 18.073
Qualifying begins tomorrow with all drivers getting 2 rounds of 10 minutes to set their best times and after each qualifying round the event organisers have confirmed that they will update the results on their page on MyLaps (see the new link on the right side of the page). We have also received the updated heat listing (see the new link on the right side of the page) which has been re ordered after todays practice sessions and will be the format that qualifying will start with tomorrow.
A quick update to let everyone know that its 15.15 local time and practice has just resumed. Currently the track is still slightly damp (see above), but the conditions are good enough for heat 5 to take to the track. Currently there are 12 heats and we will get you a list of those after the re-seeding takes place and the end of the day. We also hope to bring you the timing results after each round.
UPDATE: 16:19 – It has been announced that the drivers will only get one round of practice heats today. Currently they are about to begin heat 9.
With everybody waiting for the track to dry, I took the opportunity to talk to Takashi Miyashita, head designer of the new Evolva M3 about his creation. Essentially a completely new platform in 1/8th scale from Kyosho, one of our event site sponsors, the new M3 has been designed to fix all the issues that the team had with the previous Evolva through strengthening and optimising the cars construction. When asked to explain what was new on the car, Takashi replied “only a few of the parts are existing parts”, with the main new part being the chassis which has been designed to accept a smaller receiver pack, making for a narrower chassis plate.
The geometry of this car is however the same as on the previous chassis but the car has just been made narrower, lower and lighter. Other changes are the use of a rubber foam seal for the fuel tank to prevent fuel leaking from the tank, and new eccenters in the front and rear steering blocks and uprights to allow the height of the axle to be adjusted easily, thus changing the cars roll centre.
The rear of the car features completely new stronger plastics which also offer more adjustability than on the previous car, while as an additional feature, the car allows the rear wheelbase to also be adjusted through the use of spacers, similar to the front. The rear of the car now also has the rear body mount A-arms mounted to the centre of the rear upright, similar to that seen on both the new Serpent rear end and Mugen MRX-4X, of which you can find images of in our gallery.
Another new feature of the car is the ability to mount the throttle servo in the stand up position, as well as the laydown position, something that offers great flexibility and choice to the racer. Finally the car features carbon side stiffeners on both sides which, combined with the front chassis stiffener, allows the racer the ability to completely change the cars characteristics by mounting or removing these parts. The car will soon feature a new 2-speed clutch shoe which hasn’t yet been completed, but it will be ready in time for the cars release in December.
View more high resolution images of the car in our event gallery.
The final day of practice for this years World Championship has been hit by rain, the downpour which has stopped running after only a few rounds of practice, looks to be pretty steady but hopefully will clear later in the day, however there is currently no sun and little or no wind there is little indication on when it will. Our first day here and we have already taken a number of photographs which are currently in the Image Gallery and we have spotted a lot of new things in the pit area, with more still to see.
On the bench of top Mugen racer Rick V is the new MRX-4X which among other things features rear CVD’s, adjustable front and rear axle height, new battery holder and different rear uprights. Also on the same bench, and seen in the car of Keisuke Fukuda, is the new 2nd generation lightweight magnesium team cooling head which has better heat dissipation and thanks to its material, and extra holes in the cooling head, means it’s extremely light.
Over at the Kyosho team benches is the new Evolva M3 which is looking good on the track as well as the bench. We will do a more in-depth interview with the cars designer later on as well as supply you with lots of photos.
We are finally in Cordoba, after 20 hours of airtime in the last 2 days, 3 separate plane journeys and far too much waiting around for connections I got to the hotel at 7.15pm on Sunday. Managing to miss the opening ceremony I was kindly given photos of it by Franky Noens, who is staying in the same hotel, The ceremony was your usual presentation of drivers, speeches from people in suits and drivers wishing they could be using this track time to find a better set up for their cars. One rather cool part of the ceremony however was 4 parachutists who dropped down on to the track with flags and although one of them missed the track and crashed into the fence, the other 3 managed to pull it off perfectly.
Tomorrow sees the drivers last chance to get their setups sorted and engines tweaked, with each driver only getting 2 sessions of 10 minutes, they dont have much time left. We will be at the track first thing tomorrow to begin our coverage.