Several teams took part in the pre-season test sessions this week at the Autodrom Most in the Czech Republic. The trucks and teams were put through their paces with mixed track conditions over the three-day test.
2021 Championship runner-up Sascha Lenz presented his MAN truck in slightly darker colours this season, featuring more black in the racing livery. Despite a few teething problems, the team got a good amount of track time and collected valuable data ahead of the season.
Buggyra Racing brought two trucks to the test on their home circuit. For the 2017 truck racing champion Adam Lacko the goal for the season ahead is clear: to fight for the title. He knows however it won't be an easy task: “There are more and more drivers on the very top of the field. In qualifying, there are three or four of us within a tenth of a second. That’s impressive with a 5.5-ton monster, and it’s clear that these races are on a great level again."
“These tests are going to push us a little bit further,” said Jan Kalivoda, Head of Communication for Buggyra Racing. “This year, we’ve worked on the axle and braking system. We’ve also added a bit of power to the engine while focusing on reliability. We believe that these steps are going to help us improve a bit more. But we won’t see how good the competition is until the first race.”
2021 Goodyear Cup runner-up Téo Calvet is preparing for his second season in the Goodyear FIA ETRC and his aim is to win the Promoter’s Cup while closing in on the top in the overall classification. “I’m satisfied with the testing, as I keep improving. On Tuesday, me and Adam switched our vehicles, and he helped me with the set-up, while I tried his settings. That also played a part in my own improvement,” said the 21-year-old French driver.
Team Hahn Racing also took to the track this week. Jochen, who celebrated his birthday on Easter Monday, had a bit of a mixed season last year, but the team was happy with the running and insights gained over the last few days.
The German Schwabentruck outfit ran two of their Iveco S-Ways during the test. Resident driver Steffi Halm piloted the #44 and Finish racer Emma Mäkinen drove the team’s second truck. The Finn will make her racing debut during the third round of the championship at the Nürburgring this season.
Clemens Hecker presented his brand new truck for the first time in Most. The German and his team spent the last two years working on a completely new truck and design, making the transition from a MAN to a Scania.
The second Scania at the Autodrom Most was Steffen Faas, whose racing truck had an overhaul during the winter break featuring a new design and slogan “We power your way”. The team revealed that amongst other things they focussed on the suspension over the winter break.
Two more Iveco’s joined the test in the hands of Don’t Touch Racing’s André Kursim and René Reinert, setting their first laps of the year.
Away from the Autodromo Most, T Sport Bernau tested their truck at Nogaro. The track in France is more conveniently located for the British-based team, and given that they tested there the previous two years they had plenty of recent data to compare to. The team’s MAN truck sported a new livery and was put through its paces during the 2-day test to check the systems including the engine, gearbox, brakes and steering components.
“We found some issues, which is what the test is there for, but overall we are happy with the results of the testing session, the whole team has been working hard,” said Antonio Albacete.
The countdown to the first race of the season is on as the trucks will line up in Misano in less than a month.