Season #14 of the legendary racing series
From the 15. – 18. of July 2021 the ETS started into the new season at Arena33 in Andernach, Germany. With this already being the 14th season of the prestigious electric onroad racing series, it was great to finally see a big international onroad event taking place in Europe again. With 200 entries and a focus on complying with the most important Covid-19 rules on the ground of DJK Andernach, it was a fantastic event for the whole ETS family.
Let us take you back to Andernach to review the action on track and some interesting facts from ETS RD1 Season #14 2021/22!
Mother nature badly showed her strength
When drivers arrived at Arena33 on Wednesday, all they could see was a completely water covered track. With heavy rains in Andernach, and especially in areas of 60km around Arena33, mother nature showed her bad side.
A lot of cities and villages in the Eifel and Ahrweiler Region got hit so hard, that people lost their home from one to the next day – something which touched all drivers at the ETS in some aspect. Some people are still missed and there was kind of a black shadow over the whole weekend because of that.
Concerning the ETS race, some drivers just weren`t able to arrive at the race on time due to massive traffic jams, others helped to get the situation in their hometowns under control in this catastrophic situation – true heroes for sure!
When something like this happens, it shows that there are more important things in the world than racing RC Cars.
Racing in dry conditions
After the track looking like a lake on Wednesday, it recovered until Thursday morning and around 11 o`clock Arena33 was ready to race on. The weather then stayed in good conditions until the end of the race on Sunday, where the trophy ceremony saw beautiful sunshine and a blue sky.
The Arena33 racetrack challenged all racers with some different conditions day by day, with cloudy windy weather all the way up to sunshine and warmer temperatures as the mains started. As the Arena33 surface is flat and not super rough, the track is more sensitive to small weather changes. All drivers reported that they sometimes struggle with changing conditions and choosing setup changes at the right time.
Driver and Team performances
Almost every top driver in each class was at Arena33 to kick off the new season. All, excluding the world class modified Xray factory drivers Bruno Coelho and Alexander Hagberg. They were not able to travel to Germany because of the Covod-19 travel restrictions changed a week before the race in their home country Portugal. We really hope to see them with us for RD2 again, as they are just amazing to watch whenever they hit the track!
All drivers and teams performed really well at Arena33 but let`s see who did an extraordinary job at ETS RD1!
Ronald Völker gives wings to Mugen Seiki
In the Matrix Modified class, there is one driver to highlight first: Ronald Völker! The six-time ETS champion is a contender for the win at every race, so it was not a big surprise seeing him doing well out there. As Ronald left his long-term sponsor Yokomo at the end of 2020 with switching to Mugen Seiki, there have been all eyes on him and his new ride – a little bit of extra pressure?
At Arena33, Ronald didn`t show any signs of weakness and won the race after a clinical drive in all runs. But not only Ronald was strong – his teammates Robert Pietsch and Eric Dankel also qualified for the A-Main. When we consider that the last Mugen car was in the main in Daun 2019 (Viljami Kutvonen) the Mugen team made more than one big step forward with their new MTC2 platform.
Alex Kunkler also showed the cars potential with his A-Main appearance in the super important Xray ProStock class. He was driving amazing and a higher finish in the mains (Alex finished P7) only denied him by some bad racing luck with other cars on the track. Ingo Braun also made the A-Main in the Infinity 40+ Masters class.
The new Mugen car seems to be quick and now the team was able to show its full potential at ETS RD1. We are excited what the Mugen Team can achieve this season!
If you want to see more of Völker`s winning car, look “Under the Hood” of his Mugen in our Gallery!
Yokomo with a strong team effort
The Yokomo team had all their top drivers signing up for RD1 in Andernach. In the Matrix Modified class, Christopher Krapp and Yannic Prümper both showed a strong performance and Krapp`s podium finish was very close – only denied by Marc Rheinard in A3. Loic Jasmin was super fast in practice, but after not getting it together perfectly in qualifying, he missed the main this time.
It seems that their updated BD10LC works fine and another attest fot that was provided by Enrico Jung in the Xray ProStock class. Enrico was in the top 4 all the time during practice. Bad luck and some small mistakes in the 4 rounds of qualifying made his weekend a hard one, lining up on pole position in the B-Main. But Enrico took B1 tone to tone to grab the bump-up spot and making the A-Main for the first time ever in his ETS career.
With Enrico making the switch to Yokomo just ahead of the season, everything seems to fit together very well at Yokomo. In the end, Enrico was able to work his way through the field to finish sixth overall. With Klaus Waldmann and David Kuschnarew, Yokomo had two cars in the 17.5 Stock A-Main too.
Michal Orlowski – always fast for Schumacher
Another driver to highlight is Michal Orlowski from Poland. He is quick in every class he is racing, and when we keep in mind that touring car is not his premier class (these are 2WD and 4WD Buggy) it is always amazing to see him driving onroad and being on a strong top 10 pace at all the time. Almost on his own with the Schumacher car in Andernach, Michal (together with his dad) found the speed in his car without having a big team behind him this time. For sure one of the best drivers around – racing so many classes and being fast in all of them is not an easy task!
Awesomatix with a huge turnout again
The Awesomatix is one of the most used cars at the ETS since many years. The innovative concept from the Russian car designer Oleg Babich got a lot of attention from many people and the performance on track is always amazing. The Awesomatix team once again had a lot of their top drivers in the Matrix Modified and Xray ProStock final.
In the Modified class we saw three cars in the final, in the ProStock A-Main there were five Awesomatix cars in the hunt for the win. Guys like Rheinard, Urbain, Wahl, Lauter, Mächler and Kretschmer (only to name a few) showed the potential of the A800MMX in style. Marc Rheinard finished third on the podium in Modified, Simon Lauter achieved the same in ProStock.
One driver to highlight in the ProStock class is Louis Kretschmer, who qualified into the A-Main for the first time with his A800MMX. He worked together with his mechanic Michael Koos and looked amazing on track, finishing 4th overall – what a weekend for Kretschmer!
Awesomatix also was the strongest brand in the hard contested 17.5 Stock class with 8 out of 11 cars on the A-Main grid. This shows that their actual car is not only fast in the hands of their factory drivers, it is also amazing for all ambitioned hobby drivers. Beside winner Thomas Bemmerl we like to praise the performance of the young and talented Maximilian Unterschütz. He showed great racing for his young age and was able to TQ round 4 of qualifying – something really special at the ETS.
Another great success this weekend for Awesomatix: Steven Olsen finally won a race in the FWD class against the ARC of Henrik Heitsch and the Xray of Stefan Schulz.
If you want to see more of Marc Rheinards Awesomatix, look the “Under the Hood” of his car in our Image Gallery!
Brunet and Duchet shining for Xray
With the abstinence of their two lead drivers Bruno Coelho and Alexander Hagberg, some people for sure were not calculating with a top 3 finish for Xray in the Matrix Modified class this weekend.
Antoine Brunet from France took his mission serious and slipped into the role of the top Xray driver at Arena33. He made the Main here last year with a different car, but this time he was just driving amazing, and his car looked flawless on track. It seemed that he was the only guy with a real chance to challenge Völker during the whole event – a great achievement for Antoine Brunet. Marco Kaufmann, another guarantor for constant Xray A-Main appearances showed once again that the team can count on him while finishing in a strong fifth position.
In the ProStock class Alexandre Duchet was the man to beat from the first practice run until the end of the event. His performance was impressing in the same way as Völker`s dominance in Modified. Behind Duchet, Jan Ratheisky finished second after some hard battles in the mains. For Xray it was a successful weekend, even with Hagberg and Coelho not being responsible for the trophies this time.
This outcome clearly shows, that the actual Xray T4-2021 is a great car and a platform you can always expect on top of the sheets.
If you want to see more of Duchet`s winning car, look under the “Under the Hood” of his Xray in our Image Gallery!
A rarely seen car wins 40+ Masters
A car can be fast without being super famous on the market. This was shown by the Danish driver Søren Boy Holst, who won the 40+ Masters class with his Gizmo chassis. He started from the sixth spot, a position where you normally do not walk away with an overall win.
But in A1 and A2 Søren somehow got to the front and was able to defend his position to the finish line. With this race win he showed that his Gizmo car is fast and totally on pace compared to the other touring cars lining up in his triple A-Mains of the 40+ Masters class.
Development never stops in F1
The Scorpion Formula class saw not the biggest turnout in its history, but nevertheless a new car on track. David Ehrbar and a handful other guys drove the EF1 formula car, designed by Ehrbar himself. The car performed very well and the passion that the F1 drivers have for their class is always very impressive.
The fastest car on track was Jan Ratheisky`s Xray and he won n front of David Ehrbar and his new EF1. For the next race we expect David in the hunt again and everybody can be excited if he can get ahead of Jan. Renè Kölbel, Herbert Weber and Olivier Bultynck will try the same.
We really hope to see more Formula racers at the ETS during the next rounds as it is a unique racing class for all lovers of F1 cars.
If you want to see more of Ehrbar`s Formula car, look under the “Under the Hood” of his EF1 in our Image Gallery!
The return of “Dash for Cash”
After a couple of years of abstinence, the very famous “Dash for Cash” found his way back to the racetrack at the ETS. It is a format in which drivers can win some real money, with a randomly selected final to run the race. With the same chances for everybody to get in, it was the 17.5 Stock C-Main which got selected for the “Hot Lap Challenge” and the Frontwheel D-Main was chosen to battle it out for in a 15 minute “Endurance Race”.
In the “Hot Lap Challenge” everybody was watching around the track, and every driver had to do two consecutive timed laps on track, with the fastest of them to count for the challenge. Everybody tried to hit the lines perfectly and long time it looked good for Nele Knodel. She was holding the fastest lap until the last driver, Patrick Rebmann, did his fastest laps. With his hot lap being 0.1 seconds faster, he was the winner at the first part of the “Dash for Cash” winning 200€ in cash – congratulations Patrick!
The second part of “Dash for Cash” saw a 15-minute Endurance Race happen on the Arena33 track. Every driver had to take a buzzer with him onto the driver’s rostrum. As everybody had to do 3 stop and go pit stops (10 seconds for each stop) during the run, the buzzers got used to check these pit stops in and out and it was cool to see that drivers had a lot of fun in this format. At the end of the 15 minutes encounter, Timm Ohlef walked away from the “Dash for Cash” with the fame and the money.
We are looking forward to ETS RD2 where we will see the next showdown at “Dash for Cash”.
Great job with Covid-19 regulations
Another important topic to talk about are the Covid-19 rules on the ground of the DJK Andernach. Everybody had enough space in the pits to keep the distance of 1.50m and all drivers went with the rules all the time.
The whole ETS crew would like to thank all participants for their discipline and the support of our series. We hope for further improvements until the next race, which will see us race at the same venue again. Once again – Thank you ETS family?
Thanks to all helpers
The ETS crew wants to thank all people who helped out with a lot of different duties during the event. Without you the ETS just wouldn`t happen.
Thank you to the technical inspectors, the cafeteria team, to Axel for all his work around the facility, time keeper Hartmut and Referee Franz, Announcers Uwe and Patrick, Marlo and Jutta for organizing tires and electronics, the Media Team with Olli, Patrick, Video Master Hanno and Photographer Tom, and the amazing Hoffmann`s ice cream wagon which sweetened up every day at Arena33.
ETS RD2 Season #14 2021/22 in about 4 weeks
The ETS circus will meet again at Arena33 to race for the trophies from the 12. -15. August 2021. As you may have seen in our previous articles, the decision for that was not easy. But in the end, we are happy that we can organize bigger events again. We hope for improvements all around the world soon and we all would like to travel to our other ETS destinations again as soon as possible.
We hope you liked this small recap of our beautiful weekend in Andernach, at ETS RD1 Season #14 2021/22 – see you at the same place for RD2!