Coming up now in our series of interviews with our ETS Family we go to Belgium and one of their best on-road drivers, Ollie Bultynck!
Hi Ollie! How are you? How are you doing in these crazy times?
Hi, All is ok we are safe but it’s getting worse again and rules are getting stricter again as well.
As we know that things are different all across Europe (and the world), can you explain how things are for you in Belgium with restrictions and your view on the COVID-19 situation?
Well with the rules getting stricter again its coming close to maybe a second lockdown here as the virus is getting worse again also to go practice RC is very difficult here and no races allowed here at my local track.
With the situation getting worse again I understand that they are getting stricter but they were to late in the beginning to hold off the virus.
Going back to the times before the virus now… where in Belgium do you live? What is it like living there? What are the highlights of your area?
I live in Izegem close to Roeselare and Kortrijk, West-Flanders. It’s good to live here, it’s a city that lives but also have a lot of calm. Everything is near, also not far from the sea.
So you’re not a full-time RC racer, what is it you do for a job? Do you enjoy that?
I work for VDL Bus & Coach Roeselare, we build new electric city busses. It’s a challenging job.
You’ve been involved in RC racing for quite a long time now. When did you get started, and when did you join the ETS series the first time?
I started I think at the age of 6 years, because of my dad. He was already racing RC Cars and I wanted to try it also so I got a car from my dad for my birthday. I think I joined ETS 8 years ago.
What are your best memories of the times when you first started in RC, or maybe first started going to bigger races?
The best memories are for sure the fun I had with my dad on and off the track. Just to have a hobby and passion with my dad was the best. My first big race was the Tamiya Euro Finals in Portugal when I was 16 years old where I met Uwe, Ronald, Steven Weiss and Cyril N’Daiye. Finished P12 there I think.
Every year, it seems the competition, particularly in the Pro Stock class, gets stronger. You’ve had some great results both at ETS races and of course in Belgium. How do you think things have changed in the recent years?
Well first of all it’s a good thing that the level is getting higher, it also pushes me to become better. The biggest changes for me are the LiPo, brushless and gear diff that made a huge change. Before you had to prep your brushed motor and diff every run and you had to drive safe and smooth to have 5min runtime with the 5cells. Now you can punch full 5 minutes without runtime problems. You only have to take care of the tires.
If we remember right, you have raced both Modified and Stock classes in Belgium. But you focus on Pro Stock and Formula classes for our ETS races. How do you compare all the different classes of racing? Might we see you do more Modified racing soon?
In Belgium I run Modified and Formula, in ETS I run Modified and Formula. But sometimes Pro-Stock and I had good pace in Pro-Stock so I focussed on Pro-Stock and Formula. Modified is nice because of the power but was a little expensive with the crazy new tires every run. Not sure if I will do more Modified racing in the future.
Of course everyone has their own opinions of RC racing always. Let’s hear some of yours - what do you think are the best and worst things about RC racing right now?
Best things are for sure to meet the team and friends from all over the world and to do it with my dad together. The fun in the pits is the best. The worst things are the money it costs, but ok it’s in all hobbies the same, on high level it costs money.
What’s the best race you’ve been to? It might not be one where you had the best result, but one you really enjoyed being at?
For me it was the Tamiya Euro Finals in Portugal Estoril, was really nice race and no stress for me there at all just enjoyed being there. Also the Hotrace Cup from Nicola is one of the best most relaxing races I have been to.
Thinking now of going back to racing, how much have you been able to go to the track recently? Are you looking forward to some more practicing and racing soon? What is your local track?
I had almost 0 time to go practice as I am working in my new house and will move to it soon. Also my local track has been closed some time due to Covid, but I hope to go practicing soon. My local track is the new track from RCR (Racing Club Roeselare). An amazing new track, the best in Belgium at the moment.
Once we are back racing again, what track or tracks are there that you really wish to visit one day?
I really like to go to Yatabe Arena in my career and I want to go back to race at the Luxembourg track, one of the best tracks in the world to me.
Have you got anyone in RC that you look or looked up to?
There are some I look up to. For sure Mr. Masami Hirosaka with all what he has achieved is amazing. Also Mr MR33 Marc Rheinard is one of the best RC racers in the world. He has that thing when it matters he can drive above 100%, that’s amazing. And I also look up to Ronald Volker. No matter what track or race, he is always on pace and fighting for the win.
Thinking back on all of your time in RC, what moment are you most proud of? And what moment are you perhaps most disappointed with?
I think my most proud moment was last year’s ETS Apeldoorn. There I could confirm my pace after winning the EC at Hudy arena. My daughter was also with me in Apeldoorn and she was so happy to come with me to the podium. This was my best feeling to see my daughter so happy. I also have some disappointing moments, but that’s what makes the proud moments special.
Thank you for talking with us! As always – we give finally a chance for you to thank or mention anyone you didn’t already. We look forward to seeing you soon again at a race!
I really want to thank my dad and family for all the support and time they invested in me to be where I am right now. Also for sure my Sponsors and teammates, without them it wouldn’t have been possible.
So a huge thanks to all of them for all there support, help, thrust and the fun on and off the track!
|06.||Frederik B. Mikkelsen||592pts|
|03.||Martijn v. d. Heijden||569pts|
|04.||Steven M. Olsen||598pts|