FinTrack Nationals – Rnd 3

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Race report by Vesa Yli

The third round of the FinTrack Nationals was held at the well-known Rebellion Race racetrack in Mäntsälä, in a large sports hall with plenty of seats for spectators.


The pit was placed in other hall right next to the track with speakers and a widescreen video projector taking care of announcements and real time results projected onto the wall. The carpet was the same as used in previous years, providing medium traction to race on.

Most top drivers attended, as the race was a good warm-up for the 1/12 Euros being held the following weekend. A total of 120 drivers participated in the 4 classes. Top XRAY driver Teemu Leino was missing from this race; he was racing the new XRAY buggy and truggy in Las Vegas.

Saturday

The FinTrack race series started, as usual, with 1/12 and Touring Stock on Saturday. All top drivers attended the race in 1/12 as well as in Touring Stock. In Touring Stock, Otto Laurila and Miika Laurila continued their battle for the win like in previous races. This time it was Otto who TQ’d and Miika took the second place. In 1/12th scale, I TQ’d by a bit more than 1 lap.

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In first Touring Stock final, Miika managed to take the lead and win with his T2’007 after a close battle with Otto. Jukka Kerola took 4th place with an XRAY FK05. In the second final, Otto took the win and Jukka Kerola showed some brilliant driving skills by climbing from 7th on the grid to 2nd place. In the last final, Otto took the win and won the race, followed by Miika.

Stock Touring A Final

1 Otto Laurila
2 Miika Laurila XRAY T2’007
3 Jukka Kerola XRAY T1’FK05

4 Eetu Luukkonen
5 Jami Oksanen
6 Mikko Möller
7 Vertti Aito
8 Aleksi Kaasinen

Sunday
After a very long race day on Saturday it was time to move to the track and set up the Modified and ProStock cars. After qualifying, three XRAY cars (in Modified) and 5 XRAY cars (in ProStock) made their A finals!

Modified

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Pekka Koivula had good runs throughout the day and took 2nd place after qualifying. I took 8th place being the only driver using a brushed motor. Ivan Laptev from Russia with his new T2’007 ride took 10th place and made the A final! Teppo Kauppinen showed some fast laps but was unlucky in the first round as he was DQ’d due to an oversize wing. Qualifying was very close once again with about 15 drivers within a 12sec gap.

In the finals, Pekka had great runs and challenged Juho for the win. Pekka took 2nd place in the first 2 finals. I managed to climb 1 position with 6-6-7 positions in finals. Results after finals were following:

Touring Modified A Final

1 Juho Levänen
2 Pekka Koivula XRAY T2’007
3 Christer Andersson
4 Sebastian Trzaska
5 Simo Ahoniemi
6 Teemu Rytsy
7 Vesa Yli XRAY T2’007
8 Viljami Kutvonen
9 Ari Salminen
10 Ivan Laptev XRAY T2’007
Here is some info from what Pekka said about the race:

“I started with the same setup I ended up using in the last round in Ylistaro but without stiffener stands and narrow hexes. After a couple of runs when the track was more familiar, I put the stands back on to make the chassis stiffer. The car became easier to drive but was understeering too much. On Sunday morning in second practice heat I used -0.75 hexes but put 0.5 mm shims to make the car wider in suspension arm pins. So it was -0.25mm narrower than before the setup change. The car felt good and I used that setup in qualifying. I decided not to use a new set of tires, so the car started to feel a little loose in the rear especially when exiting the corners.”

“In the first final the car felt better and I finished 2nd without any pressure from behind. In the second final the car was very good and I was putting pressure on Juho. I finished 2nd only 0.7sec behind Juho and made the fastest lap of the race! In the third final the car was understeering a bit and Christer got close at the start which caused a minor crash where the body twisted and cost me few positions. In the last round I finished 6th.”

ProStock

In ProStock qualifying, it was very exciting as many drivers were fast enough to take the coveted TQ position. After qualifying J-P Huhtala took 3rd place while last race winner Janne Valtanen placed his T2 in 4th spot. XRAY ProStock fellows Risto Koskinen, Joni Hiltunen and first round FT winner Jarkko Mustonen also made the A final.

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In the first final, TQ driver Henry Salmen took the win. In the second and third finals, Janne managed to pick up 1st place with a clean run as others were having close battles for positions 2-3-4-5. All top drivers had nearly equal lap times which made the show more exciting in the finals.

ProStock Touring A Final

1 Janne Valtanen XRAY T2
2 Henry Salmen
3 Ari Lappi
4 Jyri Konoila
5 Santeri Jokinen
6 Risto Koskinen XRAY T2’007
7 Björn Söderg?rd
8 Joni Hiltunen XRAY T2’007
9 Jarkko Mustonen XRAY T2’007
10 Jukka-Pekka Huhtala XRAY T2

The weekend went well for Team XRAY as well as my home club drivers. In general it was nice to see new guys make the finals and show some skilled driving. Miika is fighting for the victory in one race after another with club mate Jukka Kerola improving all the time, now in 3rd place! Janne has made a brilliant comeback after being absent for many years, coming back with style and winning 2 races in a row! It was unfortunate to see Jarkko Mustonen having so many problems with his motor all weekend… that cost him a good position. In Modified, Pekka continued his good season on the podium and Teppo, Pauli, a few other XRAY drivers and I are all in the top 12 all the time.
The standings in Fin Track series after 3 / 8 races:

Stock

1. Otto Laurila
2. Miika Laurila XRAY T2’007
3. Aleksi Kaasinen
4. Mikko Möller
5. Jami Oksanen
6. Jukka Kerola XRAY T1’FK05
7. Toni Niinivirta XRAY T2’007
8. Niko Lindvall
9. Eetu Luukkonen
10. Joni Suni

Modified

1. Juho Levänen
2. Pekka Koivula XRAY T2’007
3. Simo Ahoniemi
4. Viljami Kutvonen
5. Christer Andersson
6. Sebastian Trzaska
7. Ari Salminen
8. Teemu Leino XRAY T2’007
9. Teppo Kauppinen XRAY T2’007
10. Vesa Yli XRAY T2’007

ProStock

1. Ari Lappi
2. Henry Salmén
3. Arto Heinonen XRAY T2’007
4. Jyri Konoila
5. Janne Valtanen XRAY T2
6. Risto Koskinen XRAY T2’007
7. Jussi Neirola
8. Björn Söderg?rd
9. Jarkko Mustonen XRAY T2’007
10. Santeri Jokinen

Source : XRAY

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