Martin kicks off 4WD with TQ run

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Newly crowned 2WD Euro Offroad Series champion Lee Martin got the 4WD action underway at Round 3 in Wels, Austria, in the best way possible this morning as he TQ’d the opening round of qualifying.  Having took the 2WD win yesterday and with it the 2014/15 title, the Yokomo driver topped the times by 3.8 seconds from Xray’s Martin Bayer with the HB of qualifying top seed David Ronnefalk completing the Top 3, a further half a second off.  For defending champion Joern Neumann, who is making his Serpent debut in the championship this weekend the opening qualifier looked set to net him a Top 3 run but a mistake right on his last lap right before the timing loop dropped the German to 7th.

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Asked about his run, Martin responded ‘the track changed a lot from practice and it was very edgy to drive’.  Suffering a mistake at the corner table top which dropped him from the lead back to sixth as his B-Max III rolled due to the extra high traction, Martin said after that he just drive steady for the remainder of the run.  Working his way back to the top of the timing screens helped by almost everyone suffering errors due to the difficult track conditions Martin said it was a good start and with some set-up improvements for Q2 he hoped to be able to build on it.  Due to the high traction Martin said his slipper was set too loose and he will also cut further pins from the championship’s controlled Schumacher tyres.

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Happy to open qualifying with a second, Bayer said his XB4 felt good at the beginning of the run but then got twitchy leading to a number of small mistakes and one at the corner table top that lost him over 2-seconds.  Having to drive ‘very careful’ for the rest of the run, for Q2 the Czech driver will go up in his diff oils.

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Finding his D413 edgy to drive due to his fresh set of tyres, Ronnefalk said third was a good start.  Having too much steering for the first few laps he said it improved considerably as the run progressed higlighted by him posting the fastest lap of the round on lap 12 of 16.  Running behind Martin following a mistake after the first minute he said he was happy with how he could run with the British driver.  A mistake on the last lap at the right side table top would cost him a P2 for the round but the Swede said he knows he has the speed and he is looking forward to improvement in Q2.

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Yokomo’s Shin Adachi would post the fourth fastest time, the Yokomo engineer reporting the same feedback about the track and his car as Martin.  Having been BQ at Round 2 in Berlin, the Japanese driver said 4th was a very good start and he hoped to be able to repeat another such run.  For the ‘big difference in track conditions’ he will also tighten his slipper and reduce the pins on his tyres.

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Giving Serpent’s new 4WD buggy it first EOS outing, Hupo Honigl set the fifth fastest time.  The Austrian said to drive the buggy felt slow but the lap times were ‘pretty ok’.  Considering the lack of carpet testing he said so far his and Neumann’s pace this weekend is ‘ok’ and as they get work on finding a better set-up things should only improve. Suffering a motor fan failure just before the start he said he didn’t ‘punch’ it too much but still the motor ran a little hot.  Fitting a new one for Q2 he said he hopes due to this alone he can improve his pace.

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Xray’s Martin Wollanka completed the Top 6. Having changed his shock pistons and position for Q1, the Austrian was happy with how his XB4 felt adding it was now landing a lot better than in practice.  Suffering a few ‘little mistakes’, for Q2 he will again adjust the position of the shocks as well as making a swaybar adjustment.

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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Video – 2wd A-main Leg 2 & 3

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Martin claims first EOS title with Wels victory

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Lee Martin has claimed his first Euro Offroad Series title with victory at the penultimate round of the championship today in Wels, Austria.  Driving for defending 2WD champions Yokomo, the British driver secured his second win of Season #4 when he took a tone to tone win in A2 putting the 2014/15 EOS title beyond the reach of his rivals.  Top Qualifier just as he was at Round 2 in Berlin, Martin’s win maintain’s Yokomo’s domination of the championship with outgoing champion Naoto Matsukura having won for the Japanese manufacturer at the season opener in Poland.  Behind Martin a win in A3 would see HB’s David Ronnefalk finish second with Joern Neumann marking his EOS debut with Serpent by completing the 2WD podium.

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‘I’m really chuffed for me and Yokomo’, was Martin’s reaction to his championship success.  The multiple European Champion & World Championship runner-up, added this is one of the titles I have always wanted to win but never thought I would because I’m shit on carpet’.  ‘It is awesome to defend the title for Yokomo and today’s race win also means our new car is still undefeated in the EOS’.  Commenting on A2, having been handed the A1 win when Michal Orlowski’s Schumacher had an electric shutdown, Martin said his buggy was a joy to drive.  Changing nothing he said ‘everything felt just right that time’.  He said while there is pressure with every race from ‘the young lads’ once they made a few mistakes he was able to control the pace of the race through to the finish.  Thanking Shin Adachi and Naoya Kitagawa for their support throughout his EOS campaign, he said also added the YZ-2 has been a huge step forward for the team both in terms of quality and how easy it is to drive and he is already looking to defending his EOS title next season.

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Making it two podium finishes from 2 races, the Swede missing the season opener due to his pending switch from Kyosho to HB, Ronnefalk said considering how things started out in A1 he was very happy with finish second overall.  Claiming a 3rd in A2, he opted to gamble on running a new set of the championship pre-mounted Schumacher tyres for A3.  Leading away the field, Martin sitting out the leg, he said he was a little nervous due to the new tyres but his Red Workshop B52 Associated conversion would turn out to be the best it had been all weekend.  Helped by the rapid No.3 starting Schumacher of Michal Orlowski dropping back at the first corner due to a mistake, the 1:8 European Champion said he was able to run his own race with him particularly pleased that he ran the fastest time of the three finals.  Having used a Team C in Berlin and the Red Workshop conversion here in Wels, he said he might use the EOS finale at the Hudy Arena to try another car to build up knowledge as he waits on HB’s 2WD buggy, hinting at the use of a Yokomo.

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A driver used to winning EOS races having a combined 2WD & 4WD tally of 17 race wins, Neumann was ‘really happy’ with his third.  Having contested Round 2 with a Durango as a privateer, the European Champion who only last month signed for Serpent said today’s podium was ‘the maximum result they could have expected’.  Having had little time to test on carpet due to a busy racing schedule he said for a normal mid motor car and its first race on carpet the car ran really good.  He said with some testing he is confident they can improve their pace by finding a better set-up for the configuration they have but added they may also need to take a look at producing an alloy chassis for the car.

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Justing missing out on the podium having finished tied on points with Neumann, Simon Moss would finish fourth as the top Schumacher driver with the British manufacturer having a very good showing getting three cars in the A-Main.  Unfortunately for Orlowski, 5th overall was a disappointing reflection of what started out as such a promising encounter for the 13-year-old.  A bad start to A3 and then two clashes with Xray’s Martin Bayer as he tried to work his way back to the front ended his quest for his first podium finish of the season with him finishing the leg 4th behind team-mate Moss. Behind the two Schumachers, touring car ace Yannic Prumper would complete the Top 6 overall.

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Video – 2wd A-main Leg 1

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Orlowski shutdown hands Martin A1 win

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There was a dramatic finish to the opening 2WD A-Main at the Euro Offroad Series in Austria when with half a minute to go race leader Michal Orlowski suffered an electrical shutdown that would hand Top Qualifier Lee Martin the win. Having gone to the front with an impressive pass on Martin’s Yokomo through the table top on lap 9 of 16, Orlowski had taken control of the race but with 2-laps remaining at the very same spot he took the lead the Schumacher driver’s buggy would come coasting to a halt. Passing the dead buggy Martin would go on to win by a massive 7-seconds from fellow countryman & 8th place starter Simon Moss with Joern Neumann completing the Top 3.  For second place starter David Ronnefalk a first lap coming together would drop him to the back of the field with the Swede opting to pull off after 4-laps to save tyres.

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Commenting on the race, Martin said said he could have been a bit more aggressive with Orlowski when the Polish driver made his pass.  Not at all surprised by Orlowski’s impressive pace, the Vice-World Champion wasn’t going to make both of them to crash trying to block the move knowing there was still plenty of time in the race to have a go back at him.  However he said he couldn’t get close enough to the 13-year-old as he ‘drove really well’.  With Orlowski clearly quicker after the single single and at the end of the straight, Martin said he would work on trying to improve his line there for A2.

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Getting by Ronnefalk on the opening lap, Orlowski said at first he was happy to settle for second but seeing he was faster than Martin he started to push harder.  Knowing he was faster through the section leading to the main straight he said he made the decision a lap earlier that there was where he would make his move.  Getting passed to a huge roar from the large crowd of show onlookers, he said once he opened up a gap he just tried to control the race to the finish feeling very comfortable out front.  With the battery initially suspected as the cause of the shut down, the multiple EOS podium finisher said when they turned off and back on the electrics everything worked perfectly fine again.  For A2 he will fit all new electrics.

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Moss said he ‘just stayed out of trouble’ and ‘it work out all right’.  The Schumacher driver said he thought he was battling with Neumann for fourth not third and ultimately second.  While happy with second he said he would have been equally as happy to finish third had it meant his team-mate had got the win.  For A2 he said he would just try again to stay of trouble and see what happens.

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Neumann said he got delayed at the start when Yannic Prumper who started in front of him crashed and this allowed Moss to get by.  Posting the fastest lap of the race, the German said he was encouraged by his pace describing it as good for what they have got in terms of chassis configuration.  Looking to A2 he said the speed is now good but starting from 6th on the grid it is always going to make it difficult to get a good result.

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Martin is Top Qualifier in Austria

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Lee Martin is the 2WD Top Qualifier for Round 3 of the Euro Offroad Series in Wels, Austria.  The Yokomo driver, who now moves a step closer to securing his first EOS championship title, claimed the top spot on the grid for the A-Main when he posted his third TQ run of the day in the fourth & final round of qualifying at the ‘Modellbau Wels’ hobby show.  With only HB’s David Ronnefalk able to deny Martin the extra bonus championship point for claiming the overall TQ, the British ace wouldn’t have to rise to the challenge with the Swede crashing after just two laps.  Happy to run second behind star of event Michal Orlowski, Martin would on the penultimate lap be gifted the final qualifier as the young Schumacher driver made a mistake.  Ending the round second fastest, the incident would also cost Orlowski 2nd on the grid to Ronnefalk who only posted the 10th fastest time of Q4.

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His second consecutive 2WD TQ of EOS Season #4, Martin said going into the final qualifier his focus was Ronnefalk and once he saw his rival crash the pressure was off. Admitting that Orlowski pace this weekend is very strong, he said once Ronnefalk’s challenge was over he just focused on putting in a clean run having in the previous qualifier thrown away a TQ run with a mistake.  He said while both Orlowski and Ronnefalk had faster lap times he said he ‘would like to think (he) had a fast lap there if (he) needed it’.  Asked about the finals, the Berlin race winner said the fast nature of the track layout meant passing was going to be a ‘risk versus reward’ situation.  He also added that he had his reservations about the the first lap over the corner table top as drivers try to best cut the corner.

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Using the final qualifier to scrub in a set of the championship handout Schumacher tyres, Ronnefalk said he thought a few hard warm-up laps would have been enough to break in the tyres but that wasn’t the case.  Struggling with his Red Workshop B52 Associated conversion being ‘very hard’ to drive on lap two he traction rolled off the track losing 4-seconds with a mistake on the next lap costing him a further 4-seconds.  Once the tyres came in, the 19-year-old, who set the fastest lap of the round, said the car was very good with him feeling he has ‘a good change now for the finals’.  Describing the car as ‘fast and good to drive’ he said ‘the first final should be interesting’.

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Starting from third on the grid after throwing away a TQ run when he cut the corner table top too much and his rear wheel caught the wood, Orlowski said he ‘hope(d) overtaking is not too difficult’.  Clearly enjoying how his Cougar KFII is performing this weekend, the 13-year-old said the plan for the finals was to just ‘push hard’.

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Starting fourth on the grid will be Martin Bayer.  Fifth fastest in the final qualifier the Xray driver said his XB2 was ‘way too easy to drive’ causing him to over drive it resulting in small mistakes.  Admitting Martin had great consistency and Orlowski & Ronnefalk are very fast, he said he hoped to be able to fight with them but added it would be a challenge.  Set to make a rear set-up change he hopes a more aggressive car will give him the speed he needs.

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Behind touring car ace Yannick Prumper, Serpent’s Joern Neumann starts 6th.  Copying team-mate Hupo Honigl’s set-up for Q3 he said the buggy is much faster.  Asked how he feels he can do in the final from the middle of the pack, the German said maybe with some luck he could hope for a Top 3 finish.

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ronnefalk TQ’s third 2WD qualifier

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David Ronnefalk snatched a last lap TQ run in Q3 of 2WD at the Euro Offroad Series when Michal Orlowski found himself caught up in someone else’s mistake.  Losing over 2-seconds in the incident Orlowski would hold on to hold on to claim 2nd as he did in the previous qualifier.  The pace setter in Q1 & 2 with two faultless drives, Yokomo’s Lee Martin looked on target to wrap up the overall TQ until his first driver error of the day dropped him almost 4-seconds to leave him finish the round 3rd quickest. Ronnefalk’s TQ run puts the Swede in contention to claim his first ever overall EOS TQ in the final round of qualifying but in order to do that he needs to run a faster time than Martin’s Q2 pace.

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Having started off only 17th fastest in the opening qualifier, Ronnefalk improved in Q2 to finish 3rd. Looking to get his Associated based Red Workshop B52 conversion to rotate more in the corners, the HB driver went to heavier oil in the rear diff for Q3, the change resulting in having to not push as hard in the corners.  With a Top 3 starting position in the A-Main secured, the 19-year said with the car easier to drive he would leave it unchanged and instead try to to better his grid position through another clean run.

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On target to TQ the round, Orlowski said he was just lacking in the luck department.  ‘Super happy’ with how his Cougar KFII has been running this weekend, with him leaving the set-up unchanged since practice, the 13-year-old found himself with nowhere to go on his final lap when another buggy slid on its roof right across his path. Collecting it, he too also ended upside down and needing to be marshalled.  Finishing 1.3 seconds off Ronnefalk, the Polish ace said it would have been nice to TQ but I know I have the speed and with a bit more luck everything should fine.

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Another driver to leave his car unchanged all morning other than have Yokomo engineer Shin Adachi rebuild his shocks, Martin said he just messed up his line through the single single and on the landing caught a dot which sent the car bouncing off the boards on the opposite side of the track.  Setting the fastest lap of qualifying in Q3, with a 19.371, he said his YZ-2 was good and the error was simply down to himself.

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Just out for fun, Yokomo touring car ace Yannic Prumper would set the 4th fastest time with his YZ-2 which he built and set-up as per the manual.  The German who hasn’t contested an offroad race for over a year said it was a pretty clean run and 4th was about right in terms of where his pace is at.

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Enjoying his first Top 10 run, Adachi was happy with his run to the 5th fastest time, less driver errors the reason for his improvement.  Here to support Yokomo drivers, the popular Japanese driver said he is very happy with how the entire team are performing this weekend and the fact that they are all pretty much running their cars unchanged every run.

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Completing the Top 6 just ahead of Serpent team-mates Joern Neumann and Hupo Honigl, Xray’s Martin Bayer said the qualifier started out really well until a mistake which dropped him around 3-seconds.  While he would like to find some more corner speed from his XB2, he said without the mistake his pace would have been good and he hopes to keep the next one clean having had a 2nd in Q1 and a 4th in Q2.

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Martin takes opening qualifier at EOS Austria

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Having topped 2WD practice yesterday at the Euro Offroad Series Lee Martin picked up where he left off as he took the first of the the four rounds of qualifying in Austria.  Just missing out on a 16-lap run, the Yokomo driver was almost 3-seconds clear of the field with Xray’s Martin Bayer posting the second fastest time.  Posting the fastest lap of the opening qualifier, Schumacher’s Michal Orlowski completed the Top 3 despite two incidents. Also suffering errors, it wasn’t a good start to the day for Berlin podium finisher David Ronnefalk as ‘too many stupid mistakes’ left the HB driver 17th fastest.

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Describing his Muchmore powered YZ-2 as ‘really nice to drive’, Martin said he ‘didn’t push hard (and) just kept it on the straight & narrow for the 5-minutes’.  Complimenting Orlowski on his early pace, the British ace expects the Polish star ‘is going to be quick all day’ adding the 13-year-old is ‘obviously enjoying the track layout’.  For Q2, the Round 2 winner who could wrap up his first EOS title with a win today said he will leave his buggy unchanged with the focus to ‘keep doing runs like that’.

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Bayer was very happy to open qualifying with 2nd having only been 9th fastest yesterday in practice.  Giving a lot of thought last night to possible set-up options for his new XB2, the Czech driver said he changed a lot on the buggy this morning for Q1.  Taking the ‘everything or nothing’ gamble with that set-up, he said it proved a good decision with the balance change a big improvement.  ‘Still lacking a little stability’ he said he has a few ideas he will try for Q2 to try cure this.

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A driver who is clearly very comfortable at the controls of his Cougar KF II, Orlowski would lay down the early TQ pace in the top heat until he had bad luck when he had a coming together with Xray’s Martin Wollanka.  Losing 5-seconds due to the incident he would also have a mistake of his own and considering the time lost he said ‘third is still a very good’.  Running a carbon chassis on his buggy, which his team-mates have now switched to for qualifying, he said he knows the speed is there and his plan is to leave everything as is and instead just drive it without making any mistakes.

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Running his Yokomo unchanged as to how he put it on the track yesterday morning for the first practice, touring car ace Yannic Prumper would end Q1 4th fastest.  The German said other than popping a wheelie on the main straight that cost him about a second the rest of the run went well with him describing his YZ-2 as ‘easy to drive’.  Another touring car ace joining the EOS weekend, ETS Champion Ronald Volker would set the 11th fastest time having had a couple of bad laps.

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Describing his Cougar KF II as ‘just a little easier to drive’ following the switch to the carbon chassis, Simon Moss opened qualifying with a strong 5th despite getting out of shape due to one of Ronnefalk’s errors.  BQ in Berlin, the British driver was ‘pretty happy’ with his start to the day adding he feels he has Top 6 pace.  Adding he is very happy with his new Tekin electrics, for Q2 he will stay with the same set-up and focus on registering another good round.

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‘No mistakes and I finished 6th, I think that’s the fastest I can go’ was how Joern Neumann summed up his performance.  Running his Serpent unchanged from practice, the German said the issue is a lack corner speed something he was unable to cure with set-up changes in practice yesterday.  Planning to discuss the issue with team-mate Hupo Honigl he said he will look at coming up with a set-up change they can try for Q2.

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Behind Neumann, young Hungarian driver Barnabas Toth put in ‘a safe run’ to post the 7th fastest time. The 16-year-old Yokomo driver said he was a little cautious due to changing back to 2WD, having finished out yesterday with 5-rounds of 4WD practice, but the transition back was ok.  Planning to push harder for the next one he will also make a front end set-up change to try and find more steering.

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Making his first international race appearance with Schumacher Peter Pinisch would run the 8th fastest time.  Following Orlowski in terms of set-up, the Austrian said his buggy is ‘ok’ and its more his driving that needs work as he tries to adapt it to the Cougar KF II having been a long time Associated team driver.  Behind the Austrian Yokomo’s Bjorn Prumper and Team Associated’s Patrick Hofer would complete the Top 10.

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

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2014/15 Championship Standings after Rd3

4wd Buggy Class
1. Neumann Jörn - 459pts
2. Martin Lee - 459pts
3. Bayer Martin - 451pts
4. Wollanka Martin - 449pts
5. Hönigl Hupo - 441pts
6. Hofer Patrick - 439pts
7. Adachi Shin - 435pts
8. Orlowski Michal - 423pts
9. Nicolaisen Joakim - 418pts
10.Hovgaard Frederik - 406pts


2wd Buggy Class
1. Martin Lee - 464pts
2. Neumann Jörn - 456pts
3. Orlowski Michal - 447pts
4. Bayer Martin - 442pts
5. Hönigl Hupo - 437pts
6. Nicolaisen Joakim - 435pts
7. Wollanka Martin - 434pts
8. Adachi Shin - 432pts
9. Hofer Patrick - 419pts
10.Risser Nicolas - 414pts


4wd SC Truck Class
1. Neumann Jörn - 468pts
2. Eriksen Per - 450pts
3. Zambrzycki Bartlomiej - 305pts
4. Fedorenko Vladimir - 303pts
5. Chub Dmytro - 301pts

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