Hermans and Musset take a double win
at World Sidecars Round Seven
Report and Pictures by Tracy Thacker
Valentin Giraud / Andres Haller leads into turn one
This weekend the sidecar GP season reaches the halfway point at GP 7 in Estonia at the impressive Kiviõli Adventure Centre. This is a track the sidecars have visited regularly for the past twelve years – and we are being told this one will be the last year due to the redevelopment of the adventure centre. It is always a brilliant weekend of motorsport with the GP as the main event but also midnight motocross, Estonian Rock bands, a hill climb and extra attractions at the centre including down-hill go-karting that is not for the faint-hearted, as you are towed upon the ski lift and released down the slope – without snow this time of year, there is also a massive zip wire course. Many things to keep everyone entertained.
The track is set into the hill too with massive jumps and long sweeping straights, always providing spectacular racing.
Jake Brown / Joe Millard
Bax / Stupelis retained the red plate at the end of GP 6 in France last weekend. Current champions Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart were just six point behind at the start of the day, but a big crash in the closing laps of GP race 2 meant they lost their second position in that race and will have to work hard to fight the red plate back into their possession. Fortunately, the injuries didn’t stop them racing this weekend.
Teams missing this week will be Team No 8 – Brett Wilkinson / Ryan Humphrey. Brett is still recovering from a damaged back after a bad crash at GP 1. Also, Julian Veldman had a bad fall during training and broke his wrist, but we hope to see them back soon. Finally, Team No 111 – Daniel Willemsen parted company with passenger Luc Rostingt in The Ukraine and has not yet organised a replacement for the GPs.
Qualifying races were full of action, and again the weather was amazingly hot almost 30 deg and the threat of a storm.
Although there were only 30 teams, so everyone automatically qualified, the qualification races determined places on the line for the GP races.
Marvin Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart
In group A Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain took the holeshot, competition from their rivals was stiff. Hermans / Musset blasted past going on to take the win with Bax / Stupelis second, just ahead of Dierckens / Bax, Brown / Chamberlain, held forth.
Jake Brown / Joe Millard were wiped out on the first jump but were not disheartened and fought back to take twelfth.
Reimann with Australian passenger Brian Anthony was just a few places behind.
In group B, it was Giraud / Haller who took the holeshot and didn’t look back, going on to take a great win. Sanders / Kunnas were on fire and fought through to second with Varik / Daiders just behind in third.
Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart put last weeks problems behind them and charged through the field passing Varik / Daiders and challenging for second. Both teams launched down the final hillside side by side but Sanders / Kunnas held the inside line and just managed to stay ahead truly brilliant racing. Varik / Daiders held fourth.
George Kinge / Lewis Gray had a good race taking ninth.
So three British teams qualified for the GP races.
The weather was cooler on race day with rain overnight and a stiff breeze during the day. It kept the dust under control and was a better temperature for the riders.
George Kinge / Lewis Gray
In Race 1, Hermans / Musset took the holeshot and held on for a fantastic win. Behind Sanders / Kunnas held second from Dierckens / Bax, with Bax / Stupelis in fourth. Dierckens / Bax were on top form and blasted past their rivals to take second, but were soon challenged themselves with Bax / Stupelis fighting hard, but couldn’t catch the leading team. Dierckens / Bax held third, but there were intense challenges from behind. Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart fought through and pushed hard to blast ahead leaving Dierckens / Bax in fourth with Sanders / Kunnas close behind. Varik / Daiders had a safe race in sixth staying a safe distance ahead of Brown / Chamberlain.
Unfortunately No 4 – Giraud / Haller – had engine problems and struggled off the gate, they immediately pulled into the pit box for repairs and were back out before the rest of the pack had completed the first lap, but the problems continued, and they retired before the end of the race.
J Brown / Millard had a midfield start and a steady race to take fourteenth.
Kinge / Gray were behind Giraud / Haller on the start so had a slow get away but fought through to take three great points.
Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain
In Race 2, Dierckens / Bax took the holeshot, many teams were fighting hard to get past. Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart tucked into second with Hermans / Musset behind, and there was a three-way battle with Hermans / Musset blasting past both teams to grab a second victory. Dierckens / Bax stayed ahead for most of the race despite Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart being on their rear wheel, but with just two laps remaining Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart moved ahead and took the second position. Dierckens / Bax took third with Bax / Stupelis fighting hard despite passenger Kaspers having a broken hand. Sanders / Kunnas took fifth just ahead of Van Wernen / Beunk and Brown / Chamberlain.
J Brown / Millard had another great race to take thirteenth. Kinge / Gray were just a few places behind.
Jake Brown / Joe Millard and Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain
Bax / Stupelis retain the red plate, with Vanluchene / Van Den Bogaart staying second just 25 points behind. Hermans / Musset took maximum points today and hold third. Sanders / Kunnas holds fourth with Dierckens / Bax now fifth.
There are now three British teams in the top twenty with Stuart Brown / Chamberlain holding a brilliant sixth, Jake Brown / Millard are fourteenth and Kinge / Gray sixteenth.
In three weeks the championship moves to the deep sandy Markelo track in Holland.
We will keep you updated on all the action.