Monday, 28 september 2020

RD2 - THROWDOWN

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Photos courtesy of Jernej Konjajev.

It's been a long time coming! Adria Drift Series. as you all know and as the name itself reveals, originates from the Adria region. However, it has become a household name in Austria as well. with an ever-growing number of drivers coming from this beautiful Alpine country. Naturally, we wanted to give them a home race and with the help and support of DRIFT Greinbach, it was finally set for 2020.

 

The world-famous PS Racing Center Greinbach drift track was the perfect setting for the Series' first visit to Austria, yet the circumstances could have been better. The second wave of the pandemic sweeping across Europe meant most drivers were prevented from making the trip. The starting grid was therefore predominantly Austrian, with the addition of Slovenian Aleš Pogačar, Austrian-based Bulgarians Niko Stefanov and Plamen Filipov and the young Hungarian ace Peter Utasi, who managed to make the trip from Hungary.

 

The high-speed entry into the very long first corner caused many drivers difficulties on Saturday's free practice before finding the optimal car settingsin the build-up to Sunday morning's qualifying. For the second time in as many races, it was #10 Alois Pamper who took first, ahead of the local aces Franz Kuncic and Markus Denk. 

As a race for the Austrian national championship directly preceeded our RD2 - Throwdown, powered by Liqui Moly, and with many drivers opting to compete in both races, quite a few technical gremlins made lives hard for drivers going into the Top 16. Of the top 3 in qualifying, only Pamper made it into Great 8, where he faced Stefan Bloder to then await the winner of the Gregor Kavalir - Steixner battle.

On the other end of the elimination tree, it was Gregor's brother Alexander making great progress. He beat Schmiedbauer and Filipov to get into the Final 4, where Niko Stefanov was the last hurdle on his way to the Final battle.

 

After very exciting semi-final battles, it was a brotherly duel that would decide the winner of the race, while Pamper and Stefanov were to battle it out for the last place on the podium. It was to be an all-Austrian podium, after Pamper won 3rd place and in the final battle between the Kavalir brothers, Gregor prevailed. The Liqui Moly award ceremony hence saw Gregor Kavalir standing atop the podium, with his brother Alexander taking second and Alois Pamper beside them.

 

The limited number of fans present at the event enjoyed the show and it was very satisfying for both the drivers, as well as us as organisers to see happy faces in the stands. Having hosted 2 events in 2 different countries, both with spectators (and keeping everyone safe!), is an accomplishment not many drifting series' can claim in this odd year. Now we head into the traditional season finale, Night Strike at Raceland Krško, Slovenia.

 

Austria, danke und bis bald!

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