Newsletter June 2018
Romain Dumas: “That was an unbelievable race“
7 minutes and 57.148 seconds – Volkswagen set a new best time in the most impressive manner at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (USA), making a bold statement for electromobility. At the wheel of the fully-electric I.D. R Pikes Peak, Romain Dumas conquered the competition powered by conventional drive technology and improved on the 2013 record set by Sébastien Loeb (F) by 16.730 seconds.
Romain Dumas, how did you feel that the race went?
“That was an unbelievable race. I have been trying to get under eight minutes for years. Now it has finally worked out. I found my rhythm fast and my first sector was nearly perfect. I had some fog in the second section and that made the turns very slippery. I didn’t want to take too many risks and lost a few seconds there. Thankfully, the sun came back out in the third sector and I was able to go on the attack again. After the last hairpin bend, I spoke to the car and said ‘come on, only 500 metres to go’.”
You had already won at Pikes Peak three times and celebrated countless successes in endurance racing, including Le Mans. Where does this win fit in?
“It’s right up there. Anyone who knows me, knows what Pikes Peak means to me. When I was six years old, I said that I wanted to drive here one day. Now I have won it four times. That is always something special but this year it was even more so, as Volkswagen has developed a completely new racing car and it was also my first time in a fully-electric car.”
What do you think of working for and with Volkswagen?
“I am very impressed. Developing a car like the I.D. R Pikes Peak in just eight months is a real feat of engineering. Congratulations! Many thanks are also due to the mechanics for their hard work, especially in the last three weeks, and for making this success happen. The lads have earned the chance to celebrate properly and then to get plenty of sleep. And in the next few weeks, what I would like to do more than anything is to sleep. I feel very tired, but very, very happy.”
More information: www.ppihc.org
Weekend finishes early for Huff and Bennani in Vila Real
Rob Huff (GB) and Mehdi Bennani (MA) had a weekend to forget in the FIA World Touring Car Cup. Everything had started well at the 5th race of the season in Vila Real (Portugal). The team-mates from Sébastien Loeb Racing drove their Volkswagen Golf GTI TCRs to first and second places in the qualifying session for the first race. However, things soon started to go wrong. There was some contact right after the start, leading to a mass collision and the race being stopped.
Huff and Bennani were able to climb out of their racing cars uninjured. However, the serious damage to their cars meant that the two drivers were forced to watch the restart, and the second race on Sunday, from the stands. The two Volkswagen drivers have slipped back to seventh and 13th places in the overall standings.
More information: www.fiawtcr.com
Ticktum wins to close the gap on the leader
Daniel Ticktum (GB) from Team Motopark has claimed his second race win of this season in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. At the Norisring, the Red Bull Junior remained cool during a race that was stopped once and also affected by three safety car phases. Ticktum had to grit his teeth to get through the third race of the weekend after being involved in an accident in race two. The young British driver remained stationary at the start and Ameya Vaidyanathan (IND) drove head-on into the Dallara Volkswagen. Both drivers were unharmed but were unable to continue.
Thanks to the great work by the Motopark mechanics, Ticktum was able to compete in the final race of the weekend and his courage was rewarded with a win. With nine races of 30 complete, the 19-year-old is in second place in the overall standings with 100 points. He could hardly be any closer to the leader, as Marcus Armstrong (NZ) is just one point ahead. Races ten to 12 take place in Zandvoort on 14th and 15th July.
More information: www.fiaf3europe.com
Armando Parente (P) has reached the podium once again in the TCR Portugal. Parente claimed third place in his Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR at the second race of the season in Vila Real. In the second race of the weekend, Parente’s team-mate José Cautela (P) was behind the wheel of the Golf GTI TCR. However, the 26-year-old was involved in an accident on the first lap and had to retire. The third of the season’s four races takes place in Estoril on 1st and 2nd September.
More information: www.racingweekend.pt
Volkswagen Ameo Cup
Dhruv Mohite (IND) made the best possible start to the Volkswagen Ameo Cup. The pole-setter won both races at the season-opener for the one-make cup in Coimbatore (India) in his 150 kW (205 HP) Ameo. Mohite dropped back at the start of the first race but battled back to the front and triumphed after 15 laps. The second race began with the grid in reverse order but Mohite prevailed once again. He started from eighth place, took the lead on lap five and defended it until the finish.
More information: www.volkswagen.co.in
FIA World Rallycross Championship (WRX), Höljes (S)
FIA European Rallycross Championship (ERX), Höljes (S)
TCR China, Zhuhai (CHN)
IMSA Sportscar Challenge, Watkins Glen (USA)
Fun Cup UK, Zandvoort (NL)