Sunday in Jarama Part 1 - Hahn flies off his perch to seize pole
07. October 2018Jarama - The final race day of the FIA European Truck Racing Championship at Circuito del Jarama dawned clear and cool, the thermometer registering 10°C. No sooner was the sun up than it was time for warm-up.
The Mercedes of Norbert Kiss, and the two MANs of Jamie Anderson (GBR) and Luis Recuenco (ESP), damaged in the pile-up in Race 1, were back in action for yesterday’s second race. The Iveco of André Kursim, however, took the whole day and night till around 5:30 to restore, and the repair effort underscored the solidarity within the entire truck racing family that makes this sport so special – mechanics from all the teams and makes threw themselves into it. The MAN of Czech Frankie Vojtíšek couldn’t, however, be readied in time.
The warm-up was a most laid-back affair. For one thing, the dewy pavement afforded anything but optimal grip. On the other hand a whole galaxy of racers seemed to want to use their 15 minutes only to ensure that all systems on their starships were go. Many of the times were not worth mentioning. Jochen Hahn’s best was more than 10 seconds off his Saturday times, and that clearly could not have been down to his Iveco. But then it was only a warm-up, and since Team Hahn Racing had already found an ideal setup, there was nothing left to test.
Towards the close some of the top pilots began to step on it. René Reinert (GER) recorded the top time, a 1:58.630. He was presently joined by five others under 2 min.
Qualifying started half an hour behind schedule. Some damage from the touring-car support race just before the session required the track to be cleaned up, and that delayed things a good deal. But even then, most of the truck racers didn’t get moving. Only six managed to complete one flying lap before the session was red-flagged. Some diesel had reportedly leaked onto the pavement and would have to be mopped up first. Hahn, though, had already squeezed off a 1:57.004. That stayed the top time at the end of Q2. The others who made the Top 10 through this disrupted session were Czech Adam Lacko (Buggyra Freightliner), home hero Antonio Albacete (MAN), Reinert, his MAN colleague José Rodrigues (POR), Kiss, Germans Steffi Halm (Iveco) and Sascha Lenz, Brit Shane Brereton, and Frenchman Anthony Janiec (all MAN).
The Super Pole was further delayed by a few minutes. Hahn made the most of his truck’s superlative setup to streak to 1:56.375, shaving two tenths off his best time yesterday. This, of course, meant pole for Race 3. Albacete also made a leap with a lap time that was just four tenths off Hahn’s, and he joined his German rival as the only other driver this weekend to go under 1:57.
Lacko and Lenz picked up places on Row 2, the Czech pipping the German to P3 by three hundredths.
Kiss, José Rodrigues, Reinert, Janiec, Halm, and Brereton will start in that order from the next three rows of the grid.