Joern Neumann will enter the history books as the winner of the opening round of the inaugural Euro Offroad Series after the German ace won the third leg of the A-Main to secure overall victory in the 2WD Buggy class. Starting from pole position, Neumann led from start to finish ahead of Durango team-mate Hupo Honigl helping the team secure the top two steps on the podium of the TLR/Spektrum backed event with young TLR star Oskar Levin completing the Top 3 in the Czech Republic.
On an impressive winning streak Neumann was pleased with his days work and said he is already looking forward to next month’s second round in Belgium but admits a repeat performance may not be as easy. The German, who last month became the first European driver to win the World famous Reedy International Race of Champions, expects much tougher competition from what will be a tougher line up of team drivers. Neumann also acknowledged the progress made by Team Losi Racing’s Mike Truhe who up to Friday’s practice had never driven on a carpet track and he believes the American will be a serious treat for the rest of the EOS.
‘Finishing second to the best driver in the World is good enough for me’, was how Hupo Honigl summed up his 2WD Buggy performance. The multiple European Champion said it was the perfect start to the EOS, a series which he originally put as an idea to organisers Scotty Ernst and Uwe Rheinard.
Securing a podium finish ahead of his more senior team-mates Miguel Matias and Mike Truhe, 17 year-old Oskar Levin was very happy with his performance this weekend. Unfortunately after a great performance in Leg 2, Mike Truhe retired from the third A-Main half way through after he landed hard on a track board after the double which broke a rear hub on his Orion powered TLR 22. Very much a learning experience for the 2010 US Champion he is confident that he will be in the game from the start when he comes to Belgium for Round 2.
Hupo Honigl won an entertaining second A-Main of the EOS 2WD Buggy class in which the Durango driver had to fend off a strong challenge from American TLR star Mike Truhe. Honigl, who messed up his opening lap in Leg 1, was handed an early lead when team-mate & Leg 1 victor Joern Neumann got his landing wrong on the first run over the table top dropping the German to last. Shadowed by a much more competitive looking TLR22 of Truhe the race came to a head when the American, who had shown great patience behind the Austrian, tried a pass into the hairpin after the double which resulted in the pair getting tangled. Getting free of each other the delay set the stage for a four way dash to the finish. With the timing loop positioned just after the table top Honigl, Truhe, Oskar Levin and the recovering Neumann threw their buggies at it but in the air Truhe go clipped resulting in a disappointing fourth place behind winner Honigl, Levin and Neumann.
Afterwards Truhe said he was probably too patient during the race but having come here to learn about racing on ‘European style’ carpet tracks he was pleased to finally be able to run on the pace of the Durango squad. Neumann said his errors are down to changing between his 2WD Buggy and 4WD Short Course truck over the morning as they both need a very different approach at the table top where in Leg 1 of the buggy final he also had problems. Making a mistake Miguel Matias was unable to repeat his run to 2nd in Leg 1 but was encouraged by his pace as his Nosram powered TLR 22 set the fastest lap of the race.
Top Qualifier Joern Neumann has won the opening 2WD Buggy A-Main at Round 1 of the TLR/Spektrum Euro Offroad Series in the Czech Republic this morning but two mistakes meant the Team Durango star had to work for the expected win. The German looked to have been given an easy passage to victory on the opening lap when team-mate Hupo Honigl, who started second, put his DEX210 on its roof but two laps later a mistake on the landing off the table top saw Neumann also end up on his roof. While he held on to the lead the Reedy Race winner now had a trio of TLR drivers right on his rear wing. Mounting the most serious challenge was Oskar Levin but the talented young Swede was also to make errors that dropped him to fourth. In the end it was a very steady drive by Portugal’s Miguel Matias that saw him take second ahead of Team Losi Racing team-mate Mike Truhe.