Volvo S60s face new regulations in Germany. Two weeks after the Swedish crowds braved torrential rain at the Scandinavian Raceway in Anderstorp the teams and drivers will be meeting up again in Germany, at the Oschersleben Motopark, near the...
Volvo S60s face new regulations in Germany.
Two weeks after the Swedish crowds braved torrential rain at the Scandinavian Raceway in Anderstorp the teams and drivers will be meeting up again in Germany, at the Oschersleben Motopark, near the town of Magdeburg to watch the 8th and 9th rounds of the European Touring Car Championship series on 13th and 14th July. Anderstorp delivered the best results of the season for Rickard Rydell with a second and third place finish. Less fortunate was James Hanson who finished the event prematurely following a heavy impact with the barrier after an incident. The damage to Hanson's chassis was greater than realised from the initial assessment at the track, and as a result Hanson will use the chassis from the third car for the Oschersleben race.
The Oschersleben event brings the implementation of regulation changes. Following decisions taken by the FIA Motor Sport World Council on June 26th, sporting and technical rule changes will be enforced at Oschersleben.
On the technical side, the new minimum weight for all the cars will be 1155 kg, driver included (instead of the previous limits of 1140 kg for front-wheel drive cars and 1170 kg for rear-wheel drive cars), while the general limit of 8500 rpm will be amended to 8500 for the 4-cylinder engines (e.g.: Alfa Romeo, Honda, Nissan and newcomer Ford), 8750 for the 5-cylinder engines (e.g. Volvo) and 9000 for the 6-cylinder engines (e.g. BMW).
On the sporting side, according to the results obtained in the previous meeting at Anderstorp, the following handicap weights will be imposed: 30 kg to Jörg Müller, BMW Team Deutschland (who scored a total of 13 points in the two Swedish races), 20 kg to Nicola Larini, Gta Racing Team Nordauto (12 points), 10 kg to Rickard Rydell, Volvo S60 Racing Team (10 points). These handicap weights will be scratched after the meeting in Oschersleben and recalculated for the following one in Spa, according to the results obtained in the two races on the German track.
Following his second and third place finishes in Sweden Rydell commented:
"I was really disappointed, because I really wanted to win on Volvo's home track. I tried everything, but there was no way to keep Müller behind as his BMW was faster in cornering than my car. It's a shame, because I am afraid that was our last chance to win," Rydell said, adding. "The changes to the technical regulations are definitely not good for us. We have been working since the beginning of the season to close the gap to Alfa Romeo, and now that we were almost there, we will find ourselves behind five or six BMW cars. The new rules will give them a big advantage: at least half a second per lap, three tenths of which are due to the weight."
Hanson said: "I showed that I was quick at Anderstorp. Now I need to turn that into scoring points like I did at Brno. I'm told that the circuit will suit the car and hope that we'll be fast round the corners and not lose too much on the straights. My target is to score points."
Dave Benbow, race team manager said:
After achieving the best results of the season at Anderstorp it would be nice to make the final step up the podium in Oschersleben. With shorter straights than many of the events to date our straight line speed deficiency should be less of a disadvantage. With the S60 handling being good, I'm looking for strong performances from both drivers."
Olle Odsell, Volvo's motorsport director commented:
"We will only have two works cars because of the accident in Sweden but have agreed with Flash Engineering that it will run the third car at Spa and Donington. Oschersleben is a new track for Rickard and James so we don't really know how suited they are to the track. They should learn quickly and I think that they should have the pace from Anderstorp but it remains to be seen how the new regulations will affect the levels of performance between the Volvos, BMWs and Alfas."