Home town hero Michal Orlowski has won in Warsaw after a controversial call in A3 that involved the two main protagonists, Orlowski and Coelho. Just before the 2 minute mark the Xray driver got into the side of the Schumacher which resulted in the Pole ending up on his roof. Bruno tried to marshal the stricken car but at the same time they were swallowed up by the chasing pack, the Portuguese driver deemed to have left the incident early and so was asked to let Orlowski back passed. This ended Bruno’s challenge and so he pulled up, letting the race announcer know his feelings on the situation, deeming it unfair following a similar incident in the same location of the track in A1 didn’t receive a similar call. With a bad feeling in the air, despite taking the win, Orlowski didn’t celebrate, saying ‘during the race, I thought Bruno should wait, I spoke to him and he compared it to A1, In A1 he made a mistake and I touched him just after because I couldn’t react quick enough and then he made a mistake on the next jump. It’s a difficult situation.’ With two wins from two events Michal leaves Ptak Expo Warsaw as the leader of both modified championships, ‘Overall I’m happy cause it’s been such a difficult weekend especially in 4wd. Overall it’s a very good weekend’, ending by saying ‘I don’t know how to feel about the win.’
Bruno Coelho was understandably upset following the incident, the Xray driver needing to win to take the overall victory, the call to let Orlowski, who was back in 7th, back past ending his chance to win the final and so he pulled up in frustration knowing he could still get the 2nd place based on this A1 and 2 results. Keeping his report about the race short, he said ‘I crashed Orlowski out super bad and I was called to let him go by’, following up by saying ‘In the first one he did the same to me and no one called anything.’
Joona Haatanen was the biggest beneficiary of all the chaos in A3, the understandably delighted Finn saying ‘Super happy, with the 4wd I won the main, it’s never happened before, I’m so happy, my car was working so good. I was fighting with Lee, it was a crazy final but it turned out good.’ Jorn Neumann, who was also in contention for the overall victory and also needing a win, led the race for a while before dropping back 8th, eventually recovering to 6th and so had to settle for 4th overall, with Yokomo driver Lee Martin taking 5th overall, helped greatly by his 2nd spot in A3.
In the 4wd 10.5 class Mirko Morgenstern, driving an Xray, took the win from Xray boss Juraj Hudy in 2nd while Sven Rudig had to settle for 3rd with his Team Associated. All 3 drivers taking a win a piece, with Morgenstern the only driver to back that up with a 2nd place the 2nd main. In the modified truck class Joona Haatanen won in 2 from Kaja Novotny in 2nd and Jorn Neumann in 3rd.
Bruno Coelho has resisted enormous pressure to take 4wd A2 in Poland. Seeming to lack pace compared to those in pursuit, drivers lined up to take a shot at the leader but in the end the Xray driver held on for the win in a final that was enormously enjoyable to watch. Michal Orlowski finished 2nd, having dropped to 3rd after a failed passing attempt, with Joona Haatanen in the mix finishing 3rd. Jorn Neumann, who made also made a pass on Coelho only to roll over took 4th, with Daniel Kobbevik completing the train of drivers vying for the win ending up in 5th. A relived looking Coelho said ‘I’m not used to that, normally I’m first but not used to having so many people behind me and I don’t like the sensation’ he joked, ‘It was a great final, I tried to defend myself from the Schumacher guys that were very fast behind me. Everything ran very good and I try to do the same the next final.’
Orlowski, who won the opening A-main was clearly quicker than the Portuguese driver but couldn’t find a way passed, despite a number of attempts, one of which resulted in him dropping behind his team mate Neumann with 1 and half minutes to go. ‘It was exciting to watch I guess, I would prefer to be a spectator than to race it. It was big chaos, Bruno didn’t have the pace as before and probably he didn’t want to make mistakes so it was like a big train which was pretty good’ said the Warsaw local. Continuing ‘My car felt really good so I had lots of chances to pass him, obviously he did a great job keeping me behind. I made some small errors and he made some small errors. I will take the 2nd.’ With Orlowski with the fastest time from A1, Bruno needs to win A3 to take the overall victory here in Poland.
Taking 3rd, Associated star Joona Haatanen really enjoyed the final, commenting ‘It was super good, I was so pumped after the final. There was like 5 guys fighting for the win.’ Finishing just 0.5 second behind Michal, the young Finn enthused ‘I know Bruno was slower than normal, but I had the same pace as he and Michal so it was such a nice race. To race with them with 4wd, for the first time, so nice.’
Jorn Neumann would take 4th following a passing attempt in the same corner as his team mate, which netted the same result with the German rolling out of 2nd and back behind Orlowski and Haatanen. Talking about the attempt he said ‘I tried to overtake Bruno but clipped the pipe and rolled over, the top 5 was super close together.’ Asked about the deciding A-main the former Champion said ‘for the next one we will see, everything is still possible.’
Michal Orlowski took first blood in the 4wd class at the Euro Offroad Series in Warsaw, the battle with top qualifier Bruno Coelho failing to materialise after the Portuguese driver got it wrong on lap 3 and dropped down the order. Jorn Neumann would make it a Schumacher 1-2 as he took the runner up spot, with a recovering Coelho in 3rd and his Xray team mate Martin Bayer having a good run to 4th. Recounting the race, Orlowski said ’I had a new set of tires and pushed hard at the beginning, Bruno had an error on the double. I tried to avoid him but I couldn’t brake in the air and we had a small contact and on the next jump he made another mistake.’ Once in front the young Polish driver put his head down and ran the fastest 5 minute run of the weekend. ‘I just kept it on 4 wheels, I just had a clean 5 minute run, so I have a fast time for the tie break if it’s needed.’
Neumann had a lonely race in 2nd, explaining ‘it was ok, maybe in the first couple of laps I didn’t drive too nice so I lost the contact and then it was difficult to catch up but a one-two for Schumacher is great.’ Looking to make some changes for the next main the German believes if he can keep contact with the leading pair at the start he a has chance to challenge for the win.
Ending the final in 3rd, having started out on pole position the Xray driver commented ‘It was not so good final’, elaborating by saying ‘In the beginning I started OK but on the 3rd lap on the double single I jumped too short and Michal touched me and immediately after on the double I jumped wrong and hit the board.’ Out of touch with the leaders, the winner of the 2wd class yesterday said, ‘I then just drove to save the 3rd place.’
Starting 6th on the grid, Martin Bayer, who is responsible for Xray’s offroad car development, jokingly commented ‘Everybody crashed’. Explaining further ‘It was perfect, I made no mistake, clean run, didn’t expect so much and it just me bumped me to the front.’ Having a race long battle with Joona Haatanen, the Czech driver said ‘he was very fast but he crashed and I was 4th, very good, I’m very happy.’ Haatanen would complete the top 5, followed by Lee Martin, Daniel Kobbevik, Pekko Iivonen, Paul Cromption and Wesley van Helmond.