Dario Balestri has set the pace in the first 1:10 200mm timed practice at the opening round of the all new Euro Nitro Series in Melzo, Italy. The factory Capricorn driver ran the fastest 3-consecutive laps of the Mini Racing Ayrton Senna track over the 6-minute session to head HB’s Teemu Leino by .097 of a second. Behind the two well known racers Xray driver Luca Redaelli was 3rd fastest as the Top 5 was filled by cars from 5 different manufacturers, Shepherd’s Dirk Wischnewski fourth fastest and Dominic Greiner’s Serpent 5th.
Changing to a different pipe & manifold for the first of the two timed practices to test run time, Balestri said this resulted in his own edition of his XRD Racing engine running hotter and having less overall speed. Planning to revert back to the pipe set he ran in free practice, drivers having 2 untimed runs in the morning, he said in terms of his car he will leave it as is, describing it as ‘very good’.
Having been limited to what he could try in yesterday’s open practice day after his luggage with all his spares was lost by his airline, Leino said considering they are having to catch up a little today it was an ‘OK’ run. Having not raced since the World Championships in Thailand in 2012 where he was Top Qualifier on the debut of the R10, the Finn now has all his spares and for his final practice run will try a different & slightly stiffer shock spring. Running Novarossi engines he will also try a different motor.
Running his Picco powered NT1, Redaelli was pleased with his car set-up sighting traffic as his biggest issue with 15 cars running on the large track for practice. Struggling a little with his clutch set-up, for the final practice the Italian will fit a new one along with testing a different front shock set-up.
Making his debut for Team Shepherd, former European Champion Wischnewski said he has a lot to learn but added its getting better every run. Looking to find more steering the German plans to try a heavier rear diff in his Orcan powered Velox V10.
Greiner was another driver looking to find more steering. Having changed to a solid front axle in his Picco powered 747 for the first timed practice, the 21-year said overall there was ‘not much difference’ between it and the gear diff due to how heavy an oil he was using when he ran the diff in the morning’s practice runs. Admitting most drivers are looking for more steering he is undecided as to what he will change for his next run.
Setting the 6th fastest time Francesco Tironi declared himself happy with his early pace. Living just 2km from the track, the multiple World Championship finalist is running in both categories describing the undertaking as ‘not easy’. Feeling quite comfortable with both his Shepherd chassis, in 200mm he will run the rear arms in a lower position to try and improve the car’s steering.
‘Not bad but not good’ was how Eric Dankel described his run to the 7th fastest time. An ENS Pilot Race winner last season, the Capricorn driver tried a different front spring for the run. Having ran a rear spring in the front which he said is perfect for German track conditions he followed his team-mate Balestri’s spring choice. While it made the car more responsive and it was a good direction to take in terms of set-up for this track he said he needs more time to adjust his driving to get the best out of the change.
A 1:8 winner in the ENS Pilot Series, Serpent’s Mark Green is this weekend running 1:10. Setting the 8th fastest time with his Novarossi Virtus powered 747, the British ace said he is struggling to get out of his 1:8 driving style. Confident his car set-up is good he said he is just driving it way too aggressively and he needs to calm it down a bit.
Making a return to onroad nitro after a 3-year absence, Denmark’s Martin Lissau took his Reds Racing powered Shepherd to 9th fastest. With no suitable conditions to practice ahead of the race in his home country, the former 1:5 world Champion said considering the mileage he has with the car its going ok. Looking to find more corner speed for the final practice he will switch to a stiffer shock set-up.
Completing the Top 10 and another driver making a debut for a new manufacturer this weekend was Adrien Bertin. Now running for HB, the former World Champion said he is ‘working & learning how to be fast again’ having not raced 1:10 for quite some time. Conducting just 2-days of testing with the new car in his home country of France before coming out to Italy, the Orion engine’s head of development said the car is super consistent but added he needs to find more slow speed steering from the R10 under braking.
Chassis – BMT 984 Engine – RB CXR Fuel – MLC Tires (handout) – Matrix Tyres Radio/Servos – Sanwa Remarks – Daniele Ielasi is running a completely new package this weekend as well as an all new car. Having just signed for BMT and RB the former 200mm World Champion ran both engine and car for the first time yesterday and so far is very happy with how it is going. The BMT 984 is the company’s re-entry into the 1/8th scale onroad market having spent many years focussed on Rally Game. A pretty standard affair in terms of configuration Daniele is working on trying to find a good set-up with the limited time available to him, the car having only just went on sale last week. In terms of engine, his RB CXR clocking a respectable 112kmh on the main straight with very little run time on the motor.
Chassis – Mugen MRX-5 WC Engine – Picco Fuel – Maxima Tires (handout) – Matrix Tyres Radio/Servos – Sanwa Remarks – Former World Champion and reigning ENS Champion Robert Pietsch is running his standard MRX-5 with his new Picco engines. Feeling very confident in his new power package’s run time and speed, hitting 110kmh on the main straight, his main focus has been on setting his car up for this unique track. Running stiffer springs than he normally runs as well as a stiffer anti-roll bar to deal with the high speed banked corners, to prevent it bottoming out, he has also had to make some changes to the wheel axle offset, the Matrix wheels run with a different offset than his sponsor Contact’s rims.
Track Name – Mini Racing Ayrton Senna (Melzo) Owner – Boni family Country – Italy Location – Melzo (20km east of Milan) Direction – Anti-Clockwise Surface – Asphalt Previous key events hosted – Italian Nationals and EFRA GPs
Internationally known as the Melzo track, the Italian onroad nitro track ‘Mini Track Ayrton Senna’ this year celebrates its 20th Anniversary. In the middle of construction when Formula 1 legend Ayrton Senna was tragically killed on May 1st in Italy during the San Marino Grand Prix at Imola, it was decided to name the track after the Brazilian racing icon. Requiring permission to name the track after the 3-time Formula 1 World Champion, Senna’s sister Viviane visited the track to present an official certificate making it a member of The Ayrton Senna Foundation.
Situated on a 6,000 square metre site the track is in its second incarnation, the latest layout being very popular with drivers. With a lap covering a length of 340 metres, the track features banked corners both coming onto and coming off the main straight, the 1:8 cars sounding particularly impressive as they turn into the sweeper at the end of the straight on full throttle – one observer describing the high pitched sound as ‘how Formula 1 used to sound’. Open to members seven days a week, one of the key figures in day to day operation of the track is Angelo Boni, the father of Matrix tyres boss Cristian. A new development to the track for the 2014 season is the addition of a raised pitlane.
In size the club has a membership of between 120-140 drivers with it being the home track of some of nitro’s top international drivers including Alberto Picco, the Picco Engine factory being about 30-minutes away, former 200mm World Champion Daniele Ielasi and Francesco Tironi, who lives just 2km away. In terms of lap times in 1:10 at good lap is a mid to late 19-seconds while in 1:8, the F1 of r/c racing, the cars are running a lap of the track in late 17-seconds. With the ENS running a controlled tyre system, a different manufacturer supporting each round, at Mini Track Ayrton Senna all drivers will race the weekend on Matrix tyres.
Today marks the start of the all new Euro Nitro Series which kicks into life at the wonderful Melzo track in Italy. The opening round of the inaugural four round championship for onroad nitro, Day 1’s action will see both 1:10 & 1:8 drivers complete four rounds of practice, each driver’s 3-fastest consecutive laps from P3 or 4 counting towards the seeding of the qualifying heats. An overcast start to the day at the Mini Racing Ayrton Senna track, the opening day will conclude with the first of four scheduled 4-minute qualifiers, qualifying running to a points format rather than outright fastest time with 2 of 4 to count.
The organisers of the 1:10 & 1:8 Nitro Onroad based Euro Nitro Series are pleased to officially announce the tyre format for its inaugural four round championship. Following a recent meeting with industry representatives at the ETS in Germany, the decision was taken that the championship will continue to operate a hand-out controlled tyre system similar to that used during last year’s two race ‘Pilot Series’.
Aiming to meet the wishes of drivers seeking a more level & transparent rule regarding tyres, and also striving to find a system that best supports the tyre industry, each round will see a different tyre manufacturer supply the spec tyre for that weekend. In the case of 1:8 the tyres will be a 32 front/35 rear trued to 69mm and 76mm diameter respectively. For 1:10 the tyres will be 37 front/40 rear shore with a 62mm/64mm diameter.
Scheduled to get underway on April 4-6 in Italy, Round 1 of the championship will see Matrix Racing Tires as the controlled tyre for both categories. Interestingly the Melzo track is owned by Matrix founder & boss Cristian Boni. For the second round, the ENS takes drivers to Austria to the Aigen track where Contact RC will provide driver’s tyre needs for the May 16-18 event.
Moving to Germany for Round 3, returning to the Hockenheimring (13-15 June) which hosted the first of last year’s ENS Pilot Races, Enneti will supply and support driver’s tyre requirements for the 3-day event. For the season finale (17-19 Oct) the championship returns to Italy to the world famous Fiorano track in Italy, drivers will use Hot Race tyres. Using the same system to that used during the Pilot Series, racers will collect new pre-trued tyres on entering the pitlane with the option for drivers to return the tyres before leaving again which will be bagged under that drivers name for the purpose of using them for a second time.
In addition to the tyre schedule organisers have also announced that both the 1:10 and 1:8 class will run 16% Nitro fuel. Entry for Round 1 at Melzo is now open via the MyRCM website – www.myrcm.ch.
2014 Euro Nitro Series Calendar
Round 1 (4–6 April)
Track – Melzo/Italy
Tyre – Matrix
Round 2 (16–18 May)
Track – Aigen/Austria
Tyre – Contact
Round 3 (13–15 June)
Track – Hockenheim/Germany
Tyre – Enneti
Round 4 (17–19 October)
Track – Fiorano/Italy
Tyre – Hot Race