Race Report Most -T Sport Bernau – FIA ETRC 2022 Improved race pace at the Most
By Melanie Derflinger – T Sport
Last weekend the T Sport Bernau team travelled to Most, Czech Republic, for the 5th round of the 2022 Goodyear FIA European Truck Racing Championship (FIA ETRC).
After the summer break, this would be the start of a very busy and compact second half of the season. Over the next few weeks, the team will be travelling from one race straight to the next until the beginning of October. In order to try and make our team even more environmentally friendly, MAN Truck & Bus have supplied the team with a brand new, 640hp MAN TGX tractor unit for us to use for the rest of the season.
We once again welcomed guests at our hospitality area. This weekend we had a very special guest: heavy commercial vehicle operator and influencer Angelica Larsson joined the team at the paddock for the weekend. A completely new experience for her and the team alike. We really hope she enjoyed her time with our team and look forward to seeing her content.
The first race day of the weekend was a very busy one. We started the day with the third-fastest lap in qualifying – a great start after the summer break and proving that the work over the summer period had the desired effect on the pace of our truck. Unfortunately, however, we had to retire early at the first race due to a technical issue with our race engine. With a short turnaround between the races the team set to work. Supported by some other teams, we managed to remove and replace the engine and gearbox within 2 hours thus getting the truck out onto the grid with only 2 minutes to spare before the pit lane was closed. Although we had to start the race in last position, Antonio’s excellent driving performance and the improved pace of the truck allowed Antonio to move up to 8th position as he passed the chequered flag. It wasn’t the best day in terms of championship points, but the teamwork and the support of the other teams at the paddock was absolutely amazing! Well done everyone and again a big thank you to everyone who came to help!
During the night service on Saturday, the team had to remove the gearbox and clutch once again after Antonio reported the clutch was slipping during the race.
On Sunday morning and during both the practice and qualifying sessions, Antonio quickly noticed that the feeling of the clutch hadn’t improved. Despite this, he qualified in a fantastic fourth place and was able to keep his position throughout the first race of the day – narrowly missing out on a podium finish.
After removing the gearbox once again between the two races – the third time the gearbox had been out of the truck this weekend – the truck’s performance was back up to speed! At the final race of the weekend, Antonio slipped back to P7 after the start but was able to finally show the true race pace of the truck following the modifications made during the summer break. Lap by lap, Antonio moved up the order until finishing the final race in P4.
It was a very busy and chaotic race weekend for the team but all in all, we are extremely happy with our race pace and go into the final part of the season with a lot of confidence. We are convinced we found some time with the modifications we made at the summer break. We are now looking forward to the upcoming races at Zolder, Le Mans and Jarama.