Back to the Austrian hills!

Round 3 of the 2022 Euro Nitro Series takes place at the well-known Aigen-Schlägl circuit in the north-Austrian countryside.  With a track that is known and enjoyed by ENS racers, what do we need to watch out for as the season moves into the second half?

1/8 Scale

Can anyone stop Kurzbuch?

Simon Kurzbuch looks to once again be in control of the 1/8 Scale Class at the ENS this year.  Although Dario Balestri took the win in Fiorano, he missed the second round in Ettlingen, and is not on the entry for Aigen, which will take him out of the championship contention.  This leaves Kurzbuch quite safe at the top of the championship table with his two scores so far.  On top of that, the Shepherd driver will be the favourite for Austria, as he has won the last SEVEN years at the Aigen circuit!

Other names to watch out for to see if they can prevent an eighth consecutive win for the Swiss driver are Capricorn pilot Dominic Greiner – who pushed Kurzbuch very hard in the Ettlingen event.  The German racer was runner up to Kurzbuch at last year’s race in Austria too.  Toni Gruber (Shepherd) was third in 2021, so should also be in the mix with the German knowing the circuit well having also taken second place in 2018.  Two other drivers that everyone will be looking out for is Oliver Krahemann and Nejc Mihelic.  Krahemann showed great speed with his ARC in qualifying in Ettlingen, pushing Kurzbuch and Greiner closely, whilst Mihelic has this as essentially his ‘home’ event on the ENS calendar, and looks to be Xray’s best chance for a top result.

1/10 Scale

Diekmann-Groskamp battle to resume

Everyone is easily expecting the fight for the championship between Melvin Diekmann and Jilles Groskamp to be the focus of the 1/10 Scale Class in Austria.  With each driver having a win each in 2022, the historical stats favour Groskamp in Aigen, the Dutch driver having two wins at the circuit. However, the 2022 form seems to suggest Diekmann being able to match him on speed, and the German driver will be aiming to take his first victory at the Austrian venue.

Otherwise, we expect Groskamp’s Infinity team-mates Milan Holthuis and Teemu Leino to also mix it up at the top, but also are pleased to see Juan Hidalgo Garrido returning to the ENS in Aigen.  The Spanish driver had a strong showing in qualifying in Austria last year, so will be someone to consider as well!

+40 Masters

Another new winner in Masters?

The least predictable class this season has been the +40 Masters class.  With two different winners, and a further two different drivers securing pole position at the two events so far, everything is very open at the moment!  Added to that, with the busy mid-summer part of the year now upon us, some drivers in championship contention aren’t able to make it to Aigen due to family or work commitments, we may have yet more names added to the winners list.

As you’d expect, there are some stand-out names in the event, with the sensible bets being for Torsten Muller and Arie Manten.  Muller took second place in Aigen last year, and was third in Ettlingen last month, whilst Manten stood on the podium in Austria in both 2020 and 2021.  Beyond these two drivers, it will also be worth keeping an eye on Alain Levy (winner in Aigen in 2019) and Remy Hasler (second place in 2019).  But with the field so close this year, it’s looking like another very competitive event.

Here we go…

With one of the biggest entries ever for the Austrian round of the ENS, we’re all excited to see how it actually plays out on the track when the timing starts!  The event kicks off with the normal optional Thursday Free Practice day on 14 July, and is set to conclude with the finals on Sunday 17 July.  As always, we’ll post reports here, and you can check the Facebook group for more news and photographs too.  Here’s to another great event in Aigen-Schlägl!

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