Schumacher will start 1-2 on the grid for the Euro Offroad Series championship deciding 4WD A-Main, with Joern Neumann continuing his reign at the EOS’ first ever outdoor event at Arena33. Top Qualifier and winner of 2WD, the German claimed the 4WD pole with his second TQ run in the fourth & final qualifier while, having TQ’d Q3, title contender Michal Orlowski will start 2nd. The only other driver with a TQ run but having a fraught Q4, defending champion Bruno Coelho will line his Xray up third ahead of the Associated of Neil Cragg and Yokomo of Lee Martin.
Pulling off an impressive save at the front double in Q4, Neumann said, ‘other than my moment at the double it was a clean run but there is something in the jump since they added the new carpet. I think something might be broken underneath’. With the race organisers now working on the jump ahead of the finals, he continued, ‘The Schumacher car is super fast and Michal & me are 1-2’. Asked about tyres, given that it was a factor in 2WD, the former champion replied, ‘tyres are no problem. I ran third run tyres in qualifying and have one set with one run and one brand new set. The car is very good on tyres’. Asked about the finals and the fact his team-mate is vying for the final win he said, ‘I will just drive and if he is faster he (Orlowski) will overtake’.
Commenting on his qualifying, Orlowski said, ‘It was good to get the TQ in the third one, the feeling of the car was much better. The last one I was very unlucky in the double. I was feeling very good but the car just kicked and I had no chance to save it’. He continued, ‘many guys are crashing there. The up ramp is not flat and its causing the cars to go sideways in the air’. Suffering a rip yesterday, a second piece of EOS carpet was placed over the damaged area to allowing racing continue and since then some drivers are having issues. Asked about the title, the 2WD Champion said, ‘I need a win. Bruno is starting behind me and I hope he will play fair like I did with Neil (Cragg) in 2WD. Joern is fast but I am too. I got the fastest lap in the last one’.
Pulling up in the final qualifier, Coelho said, ‘that was a disaster qualifying run. I had so many mistakes’. He continued, ‘Orlowski made a mistake in front of me and I was trying to see where his car was going to end up but ended up crashing and it was game over for me’ – Landing wide he would get stuck behind the track piping. Asked about the championship and challenge from Orlowski he said, ‘for sure he will force for the win and he has Neumann in front. I’m not sure if, like we do sometimes, they will play like a team like (Ronald) Volker did last weekend. We will see’. The reference to Volker is from the ETS in Madrid when the World Champion opened for team-mate Christopher Krapp in A3 to try and help him take the overall win.
‘A pretty outstanding result’, was how Cragg described his P4 starting position. The British driver continued, ‘the car has been good and the driver has been good. There is no pressure on me that’s on the other guys going for the championship. Hopefully I pick up the pieces and sneak a podium out of it’. Posting Top 3 runs in Q1 & 2, on the last two qualifiers he said, ‘I had good pace in the third one but had too may crashes so I got 8th or something. The pace was decent in the last one and I didn’t crash which got me 4th which was not too bad at all’.