Dustin Evans has taken the opening A-main in 2WD Buggy at the Euro Offroad Series in Sweden heading home Top Qualifier Ryan Cavalieri and Hupo Honigl. Mixing it with fellow American Cavalieri for much of the race, the Team Losi Racing driver eventually took to the front when Cavalieri came short over the double into the Kyosho corner. Evans tried an earlier move just after the large Durango double and ended up tangling with Cavalieri, a move the Reedy Race of Champions winner said himself was a little too aggressive. The incident almost gave 16-year-old local talent Oskar Levin the chance to lead the quality field in front of the home crowd but the marshal attending the two Americans got his foot in the way holding up the Losi driver.
Cavalieri, who set the fastest lap of the race on the last lap, said his B4.1 was really good but there was nothing he could do after his mistake but follow Evans. Team Durango’s Honigl, who started 5th on the grid said he just tried to run a clean race and that approach paid off as he came home third, a result the Austrian said was the best he could have expected.
Starting from third on the grid Lee Martin had a disastrous race finishing up 8th. The Tamiya driver got tagged by Kyosho’s David Ronnefalk on lap 2, an incident that the 16-year-old Swede took full responsibility for, but admitted he was never going to be in a position to challenge the Top 2 due to a lack of traction. The British driver found a problem with the diff on his TRF201X afterwards and hopes this might have something to do with it. Ronnefalk who fell to last after his coming together with Martin recovered well to finish 5th behind Losi driver Otto Ausfelt who took the honour of being the best placed Swedish racer.
In 4WD Short Course Joern Neumann converted his pole position into a dominant victory but the Team Durango ace was headed briefly by Cavalieri. The Team Associated driver passed the German on the opening lap but a lap later got his SC10 4X4 out of shape at the end of the straight putting the truck on its roof. Neumann luckily opened up a gap over the over the pack because with three laps to go a wire came off his speedo causing a drop off in power but he was able to hold on to take the win from Cavalieri by 5-seconds. Durango team-mate Honigl completed the Top 3 after a very close battle with TRF driver Viktor Wilck who is running a Losi truck.
In 2WD SCT Evans took his Losi XXX-SCT to an easy win over team-mates Martin Bayer and David Spashett who enjoyed a superb battle swapping position a number of times throughout the 5-minute race.
Dustin Evans is the 4WD Buggy Top Qualifier for the Euro Offroad Series Pilot event giving Team Losi Racing chief David Spashett an extra reason to celebrate on his birthday here in Sweden. Only Ryan Cavalieri could deny the Reedy Race of Champions winner’s pole position going in to the final round of qualifying but Team Durango’s Joern Neumann put pay to that when he TQ’d Q5 to become the only driver to head the Americans in either buggy class.
Suffering diff problems that meant he could only manage ninth in Q5, Evans said he was delighted at securing TQ honours on this his first event outside the US. Cavalieri, who took TQ honours in 2WD Buggy earlier in the day, said he made the wrong tyre choice for the final qualifier but is confident his B44.1 is fast enough for the win tomorrow.
Lee Martin was left frustrated in the final qualifier after his Tamiya went out off control while he was top of the timing screen. Inspecting the car after it was pulled from the track, the European Champion said the receiver had moved but all the wiring was in place and the radio was working fine again. The problem not only cost the British driver a potential TQ run but also third place on the grid with Neumann pushing him back to fourth. Tamiya will be the best represented manufacturer in the A-Main with half the grid. 27-year-old local racer Otto Ausfelt lines up fifth ahead of former European Champion Marc Rheinard with promising Swedish teenager Oskar Levin 8th and Viktor Wilck 10th.
15-year-old David Ronnefalk had a troubled final qualifer and the Swedish Champion was unable to repeat his Top 4 Q4 performance. The only Kyosho driver to make the final, he will line up seventh on the grid. Completing the line-up for the 4WD Buggy main event is the second of the factory Team Durango drivers Hupo Honigl who will carry the number 9.
Ryan Cavalieri set the pace in the penultimate round of qualifying for 4WD Buggy taking the round from Lee Martin and 4WD Short Course Top Qualifier Joern Neumann. His second TQ round the result means that it will be an American who will start on pole for tomorrow’s final. Cavalieri needs to run a third TQ round in the fifth and final qualifier and needs to do so in a time better than 5:14 if he is to deny Dustin Evans from becoming the Top Qualifier.
Setting a new fastest lap for the event, Cavalieri said his B44.1 was better following a switch to Losi Pink Taper but lost time in the later part of the run when his slipper started to back off. The factory Associated driver is fitting new pads to the slipper as he knows he is going to need to produce the perfect run if he is to take his second TQ honours of the day. Evan’s could only manage fifth saying he pushed too hard and this resulted in him throwing away the chance of a third straight TQ run when he made a mistake on his second lap.
Finishing second, Tamiya’s Martin said he is lacking something but he’s not sure if it is him or the buggy. 4WD Short Course Top Qualifier Joern Neumann was again able to set the pace but once again made a mistake and ended up third. The Durango driver switched to Losi BK-Bar tyres on the front of his DEX410 but will switch back to Taper for the final outing of the day as they gave better steering in the 180 degree corners. Swedish 4WD National Champion David Ronnefalk enjoyed his best run so far to post the fourth fastest time with his Kyosho Laser.
Team Losi Racing’s Dustin Evans has TQ’d the first two of today’s 4WD Buggy qualifiers heading home Lee Martin in Q2 and 2WD Buggy Top Qualifier Ryan Cavalieri in Q3. The Reedy Race of Champions winner set a new fastest lap of the weekend in the third qualifier taking his XXX4 around in a blistering 21.838, Team Durango driver Joern Neumann the only other driver to go sub 22 seconds. With just two more qualifiers to run here in Tomelilla time is running out for the European’s to try topple the American’s from claiming a clean sweep of the Buggy class qualifiers.