This was the German Timeattack Masters 2018.
What a blast for me and my NSX. All the effort and passion I put into this project came back with lots of cups, race wins and finaly the championchips! It was more than just an amazing season.
The EUROPEAN TIME ATTACK MASTERS happend also during the last race of the GTAM. Of course I anttended in the ETAM CLUB and PRO classes as well. And of course my car delivered an outclass performance again. FOUR times Champion. GERMAN TIME ATTACK – CLUB & PRO >>> EUROPEAN TIME ATTACK – CLUB & PRO
Some mods on my 1991 NSX: 330whp, 3,5i BC stroker, Toda C cams, KW competition A2 coilovers, curbweight with 20ltr fuel and w/o driver 1190kg, Tarox fr and RFY rr brakes, blablabla……
It may have seemed to be easy to most people – because NSX and so on – but once in a while you also need some luck for such success. Four days before the first race the 3.5l engine had to be replaced by an OEM unit, otherwise my start would have been impossible. On raceday i had misfire after just three laps of full throttle, reason unknown. So i replaced the ECU, spark plugs, ignition module, resistor box and ran simulated finals: Inlap and hotlap, just to avoid ignition problems. That worked out, i placed 1st in Club class and, to my surprise, 2nd in Pro class.
Before the second event i changed the engine back to the 3.5l and i knew, i had chances in the Pro class even, as in the finals in first race were quite close with the stock engine i drove (0.8 seconds). I managed to win that race on the Nürburgring in the Club class and became 2nd to a guest starter with a Scirocco Cup in Pro class. My direct competitor was beat by 2 full seconds, which was more important to me than the victory in Club class actually. From then on i knew, that i could be faster than all main competitors in the Club and Pro group, so the goal of getting two titles was on it’s way – even though some very fast cars were registered for the Pro class and beating them seemed to be very hard. In theory at least.
The third race and audience’ favorite – Reisbrennen 2018 – was on and all championchip participants met for seasons half time under blistering heat. Long story short: All turbos had problems with that heat and did not manage to run good times, including my competitors from the Pro class. My main competitor in Club class however, was driving a naturally aspirated BMW M3 and managed to close the gap down to 1 second (as in the races before) for his second place, right behind me. In Pro class i actually won with a four second gap to the second place. On that day i managed to pull of the fourth fastest laptime among all regular cars (excluding superlights). I mean image that, no matter if 400hp+ Civic, 400hp+ AWD or Nissan GTRs, all of them were slower!
Assen – the most feared race, as the probability for rain is very big. Weather forecast was not in our favor and we started our 1000km trip to the Netherlands well prepared. With steady rain, track conditions were shity for everybody, all the time. Despite that, i felt quite comfortable on track and used every free minute of practice to get faster.
During qualification i was on the first place in both classes, something i would have never anticipated! Personally i just wanted to get among the five fastest in qualifying, to make it to the finals. That i again managed to drive the fourth fastest time (2:21.704) of all competitors was again unbelievable. Just one AWD Evo and two vehicles from Extreme class were faster, which were going on race-rain tires, something that is forbidden in Club and Pro classes.
I was going on three year old Federal 595 RS-R i used one season and which received additional longitudinal grooves and wider side channels. Not prohibited by regulations, but questionable nonetheless. So i gathered that infos from scrutineering and started cutting. I must admit, that is a grey zone, but regulations stated that only tires with an “E”-symbol are allowed, it says nothing about street legality. Well sometimes you have to be quirky in this business and find loopholes.
I did not want to change anything without double checking. My second argument in interpreting the rulebook was the following: Semi slicks with less than 1.6mm (and some reach that at the end of the season) should also lead to disqualification, as those are not street legal in Germany any more, even though they carry the “E”-symbol still. But there will be a change in regulations, addressing this point.
Sadly i was unable to use that advantage in the hotlap, as a chain reaction of unfortunate events i smashed into the guard rails and the winning streak was broken. In Club class, the M3 catched up to mere 5 points in the championship. I needed quite some days to cope with that and knew, i should avoid any mistakes in the last race.
Finals, along with the @European Timeattack Masters on the Nürburgring was coming up and i approached with a fully fixed car. It was a marathon with fourfold start. Club + Pro classes in the German championship and Club + Pro classes in the European Championship. In other words: I successfully managed the Grand Slam by winning all four qualifications and all four finals. That means two titles in the @German Timeattack Masters for Club 2WD and Pro 2WD classes, as well as two titles in the @European Timeattack Masters for Club 2WD and Pro 2WD classes.
On a side note: My NSX got 4.4 seconds faster on the Eurospeedway from 2017 to 2018 and 7.8 seconds on the Nürburgring, something i am more than happy with. That’s an advancement i wouldn’t have dreamt about.
In the end i would like to thank all my competitors and all the other drivers for such a great season and the fair driving on track. Furthermore, even off track the behavior of everybody (well most people at least) is fair and square. After my third season i know some of the people quite well and i can’t imagine a better group than this @German Timeattack Masters racing family. There’s one thing i have to add:
The crew around Marco Thillmann is such a great bunch of people, always cheerful and in the end, are the guys making all this possible.
Thanks also go out to my engine builder Kaps Roman from ECU Performance in Vienna and Doctronic.at, the tuner. With Roman i have been working since 2000. Everything else around the car (including the driving) i do myself, kind of a one-man-show. Still, it is very helpful if Martin Iro and/or Dietmar Straubinger can make it to the events, as tire pressure is a very important factor and it might happen, that i have to be carried to my room ?
After the season is before the season, i will now unload the racer and put everything where it belongs. Attached are some photos from all over this season. To a long life of our naturally aspirated beasts! #NA_ftw #NSX #Honda