By Mike Garrison
Announcement from the Euro Touring Series:
The season finale of the Yokomo Euro Touring Series takes place this weekend (13-15 July) at the Hudy Arena in Slovakia. Having hosted the penultimate round of the championship last year, the World famous facility has returned to its traditional date of being not just the sixth and final round but also doubling up as the perfect venue for all the ETS’ end of season awards presentations. With 3 of the four titles already settled when the previous round saw the return of Apeldoorn in the Netherlands to the schedule, the final round will very much be an important form guide ahead of the upcoming World Championships in South Africa. Having successfully defended his ETS Modified title, Bruno Coelho will be looking to remain undefeated at his Xray team’s home track.
Winning every year since bursting onto the international scene at the end of 2014 at the World Championships in Florida, Coelho will go for his fourth consecutive ‘home’ win and fourth win of the season. With home advantage, Xray has enjoyed a 1-2 for the last three years thanks to Alexander Hagberg and the Swede is very much finding his form ahead of the World Championships and would love nothing more than to add win No.2 of the season at Hudy Arena.
The last non Xray driver to win at Hudy Arena was Marc Rheinard, when he led a Tamiya 1-2 from Viktor Wilck back in 2014 with Ronald Volker completing the podium. Rheinard comes into the weekend holding second in the points standings but the Infinity driver needs to protect his position from both Volker and Hagberg. Winner of the season opener, Rheinard has struggled to match that form of late, however he was to be the last remaining challenger to Coelho in the title race but 5th in Apeldoorn ended his chances of taking the fight to Slovakia.
Volker has recently found great form being the only one to challenge Coelho in Apeldoorn and has subsequently been crowned European Champion ahead of Hagberg with Coelho third. The Yokomo driver will also be highly motivated to ensure he doesn’t end the season without a victory. The 5-time champion has won a race every season since joining the championship and would like to continue that statistic by getting his first Hudy Arena win. Such a result would also do no harm at all to boost his confidence as he sets out to defend his World title.
With Jan Ratheisky wrapping up the Pro Stock and Formula titles at Apeldoorn, and the overall season podium decided, the title attention will be on the 40+ Masters class which was an new addition to ETS this season. Each race has produced a different winner so far but it is Thomas Oehler would comes in the final round leading the standings albeit by a single point. Winner in Spain, Christian Drießle is second ahead of the most recent winner Beni Stutz who took the TQ and his first ever ETS win in the Netherlands. All three drivers will battle it out to become the inaugural champion.