DTC: Jyllands-Ring 2000-06-12

John Nielsen: "I was right at the limit" Jason Watt had to retire from a fine fourth with technical problems John Nielsen traveled to next weekend's Le Mans 24 Hour race with the best possible ballast. At the Jyllands-Ring on Whit Monday the ...

John Nielsen: "I was right at the limit"
Jason Watt had to retire from a fine fourth with technical problems

John Nielsen traveled to next weekend's Le Mans 24 Hour race with the best possible ballast. At the Jyllands-Ring on Whit Monday the McDonald's Nissan driver finally won his first win in this year's edition of the Danish Touringcar Challenge. But Super John did not have an easy time. Both in the qualification race as well as in the final he was hard pressured by Mike Legarth and Jesper Sylvest respectively.

"I was right at the limit, and especially Jesper Sylvest put a lot of pressure on me. No matter what I tried I could not wrest him of, as he kept staying to my tail," John Nielsen explained after the his win.

"Morally it is splendid that I can travel to Le Mans following this win. It was a really close race, but the win today is a clear development of our performance a fortnight ago at Ring Djursland, but luckily it did not end in tears this time."

In the qualification race John Nielsen led from start to finish, having been pressured by Mike Legarth's rear-wheel driven BMW 320i, until the latter spun out with three laps to ago. Instead Michael Carlsen and Jesper Sylvest took up pursuit. In the final Michael Carlsen blew all his chances with a tardy start, and it was thus left to Jesper Sylvest to follow John Nielsen. This he did with effect, and although John Nielsen never got a lead of more than a second, he nevertheless managed to lower his lap times.

But the performance of the day was delivered by Jason Watt, who finally got his comeback to professional motor racing. In his specially-equipped Peugeot 306 GTI he was a member of the leading group, and having finished the qualification race in sixth place, he sadly had to retire from fourth place with mechanical problems with five laps to go.

"It is the gearbox that causes problems," Jason Watt explained after the race. "The problem is that it selects a gear too much when going up or down, and after several such occurances the drive shafts simply cried enough. During the final I was closing up on my team mate Pierre Legarth in third, but as soon as I had a good lap, the gear shift caused me problems."

Despite his retirement from the race Jason Watt got a big applause from his home audience, who had come to watch his comeback. The former Formula 3000 star himself was also satisfied with the result.

"It went better than expected, but being a racing driver as I am, you always want to win", he confessed. "I have had a perfect race weekend, and it's marvellous to get confirmation that the ability that I previously held in my feet has now been transferred to my hands, and that it is the car that fails in the end. Had it been the other way round, it would have been awful!"

Reigning champion Jesper Sylvest finished in second place with his Citroën Xsara Coupé VTS, which was far more competitive this time. But it is still Michael Carlsen, who is the leader in the Danish Touringcar Challenge, even though he was last off the line in the final, ending in sixth place only.

"The car simply died on me, when the lights turned to green, as my Peugeot is very difficult to start without first gear. That's life," the 306 driver stated.

The Danish Touringcar Challenge drivers now go on a well-deserved summer holiday, as the DTC battle will not commence until August 13th with fourth round of the series at Ring Djursland.

<pre> Result - Round 3 – Qualification race – 12 laps of 1.475 kms:

1. John Nielsen         McDonald's Nissan Racing        Nissan Primera          10.15,410
2. Michael Carlsen      Michael Carlsen Motorsport      Peugeot 306 GTI         10.17,094
3. Jesper Sylvest       Sylvest Motorsport              Citroën Xsara Coupé VTS 10.18,797
4. Casper Elgaard       Renault Motorsport      DanmarkRenault Megane St.car    10.20,528
5. Pierre Legarth       Peugeot Sport Team              Peugeot 406 Coupé       10.24,010
6. Jason Watt           Peugeot Sport Team              Peugeot 306 GTI         10.24,607
7. Michael Schröter     Michael Schröter                Volkswagen Golf GTI     10.25,175
8. Kurt Thiim           Team Hohenester                 Volkswagen Beetle       10.25,826
9. Jørgen Poulsen       S40 Racing                      Volvo S40               10.26,207
10. Mike Legarth        Legarth Racing                  BMW 320i                10.33.366

Fastest lap: Michael Schröter, 50,173s (105,834 km/h).

Result – Round 3 – Final – 20 laps of 1.475 kms:

1. John Nielsen         McDonald's Nissan Racing        Nissan Primera          19.30,858
2. Jesper Sylvest       Sylvest Motorsport              Citroën Xsara Coupé VTS 19.31,937
3. Pierre Legarth       Peugoet Sport Team              Peugeot 406 Coupé       19.38,598
4. Casper Elgaard       Renault Motorsport      DenmarkRenault Megane St.car    19.41,689
5. Mike Legarth         Legarth Racing                  BMW 320i                19.43,965
6. Michael Carlsen      Michael Carlsen Motorsport      Peugeot 306 GTI         19.47,072
7. Kurt Thiim           Team Hohenester                 Volkswagen Beetle       19.49,416
8. Gunnar Kristensen    Team Brask Racing               Peugeot 306 GTI         19.49,819
9. Carsten Leveai       Team Brask Racing               Peugeot 306 GTI         19.56,277
10. Michael Schröter    Michael Schröter                VW Golf GTI             -1 lap

Fastest lap: John Nielsen, 50,170s (105,834 km/h).

Championship positions:

1. Michael Carlsen      Michael Carlsen Motorsport      Peugeot 306 GTI          66,0 p.
2. Jesper Sylvest       Sylvest Motorsport              Citroën Xsara Coupé VTS  52,0 p.
3. John Nielsen         McDonald's Nissan Racing        Nissan Primera           50,0 p.
4. Michael Schröter     Mihcael Schröter                VW Golf GTI              36,0 p.
5. Thorkild Thyrring    McDonald's Nissan Racing        Nissan Primera           27,5 p.
6. Pierre Legarth       Peugeot Sport Team              Peugeot 406 Coupé        27,0 p.
7. Mike Legarth         Legarth Racing                  BMW 320i                 26,5 p.
8. Casper Elgaard       Renault Motorsport      DanmarkRenault Megane St.car     16,5 p.
9. Klaus Madsen         Team Brask Racing               Peugeot 306 GTI          16,0 p.
10. Carsten Leveau      Team Brask Racing               Peugeot 306 GTI          15,5 p.
11. Kurt Thiim          Team Hohenester                 Volkswagen Beetle         8,5 p.
12. Jørgen Poulsen      S40 Racing                      Volvo S40                 5,5 p.
13. Gunnar Kristensen   Team Brask Racing               Peugeot 306 GTI           5,0 p.
14. Peter Rasmussen     VHA Trim Racing                 Fiat Coupé                4,0 p.
15. Jason Watt          Peugeot Sport Team              Peugeot 306 GTI           3,0 p.
16. Allan Bjerregaard   Allan Bjerregaard               Ford Focus                2,5 p.
17. Kent Bo Steffensen  S40 Racing                      Volvo S40                 1,0 p.
    Johnny V. Nielsen   J.V. Nielsen Racing             Peugeot 306 GTI           1,0 p.
 

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Series General
Drivers John Nielsen , Jason Watt , Casper Elgaard , Thorkild Thyrring , Gunnar Kristensen , Kurt Thiim
Teams Citroën World Rally Team