Zolder 5-6 May 2007


It is always nice to go to Zolder. It is conveniently close and after little less than 3 hours you are where you want to be. This was a no free practice so we, Joost, Olivier and myself, drove up on Friday evening. The next morning the race was on immediately. First practice had to be the one. Weather forecast was a warm day which would mean that the second practice would be slower than the first one. Certainly because I had brand new Avon tyres.

First practice

There was a lot of traffic and it was quite hard to get in a good lap. Furthermore Zolder is a circuit that is constantly calling to me "You can go faster into this corner". And it keeps calling so I know I could go faster. I finally got one lap more or less right, which resulted in a 1:49.6. I made another few attempts but either was a car in the way or I made a mistake. With seconds on the clock I had a gap and I got the first and second corner right and then there were yellows in Bianchi. The Belgian marshals were a bit overzealous to end the training session and ended my final attempt. The time was still a far cry from my best time of last year 1:47.0 and although the chicane behind the paddock was a bit slower as you couldn't go over it. Matthew Dean found this out when he launched himself on it only holding the car with great difficulty while I had a grandstand view of his efforts. Anyway I don't think the track would be more than 0.5 s slower by this. So there was work to do.

Second training

I tried the Dunlops as these generally work better in warm weather. In the morning session I was still a bit rusty because there hadn't been any free practice. In this session I was a bit more tidy and so I bettered my time of the morning. Not by a great margin and certainly not the low 1:48 I was aiming for. A 1:49.0 got me a 6th place on the 1600 grid.

We had a lot of visitors, Jan and family and Joost girlfriend's with offspring and Jan made a very good diner.

      Class 1st session 2nd session
1 Hanno Hess van Diemen RF88 B 1:46,963 1:45,992
2 Jaap Blijleven Reynard SF88 B 1:46,773 1:46,868
3 Matthew Dean Reynard SF88 B 1:47,302 1:46,885
4 Roel Mulder PRS RH02 B 1:48,555 1:47,673
5 Rebecca Dean Reynard SF88 B 1:50,518 1:48,302
6 Ed Waalewijn van Diemen RF82 B 1:49,632 1:49,033
7 Tony Walsh Reynard SF88 B 1:53,464 1:49,049
8 Paul McMorran Crossle 25F C 1:50,340 1:49,375
9 Alan Crocker Ray FF71 C 1:49,501 1:49,536
10 Chris Stones van Diemen RF85 B 1:49,505 -
11 Roberto Kraft Swift 88 B 1:50,956 1:50,577
12 Nils Leuber Vaney 71/2 C 1:52,879 1:50,923
13 Christian Schröter van Diemen RF82 B 1:52,246 1:51,248
14 Stephen Collyer Dulon MP15 C 1:52,265 1:51,619
15 Paul Hubbard Merlyn  Mk 20 C 1:51,886 1:51,873
16 Jan Steenhart PRS RH02 B 1:52,413 1:51,892
17 Jean Marc Mantei van Diemen RF87 B - 1:52,775
18 Thomas Rohmer van Diemen RF87 B 1:54,807 1:53,802
19 Rob ter Steege van Diemen RF87 B 1:55,741 1:57,495


I had a pretty good start and got in front of Rebecca Dean. I followed Roel Mulder and at the chicane Tony Walsh tried to overtake on the outside. As he ran on to a slow 2 litre I thought I could easily keep him at bay as I had the inside line. To my surprise the 2 litre went into the chicane a lot faster than I anticipated. So I had to concede a place and because of attention I had given to the situation I had forgotten to shift back and I accelerated slowly out of the corner in third gear. Rebecca and Paul McMorran slipped by. On the exit of the Villeneuve chicane I almost lost it on a greasy patch and unknown to me at the time Chris Stones almost collected me. I managed to re-pass Paul. In the second lap Chris passed me and I tried to follow him and Rebecca. They got a small gap that I managed to close a little . Then I had another moment on a greasy patch and lost contact with Chris and Rebecca. Paul was always close. I tried to close the gap but that did happen. It only got bigger. Then I had a big moment when coming to the first corner I got on Dan Gouweloos' oil and with the greatest difficulty I could keep the car on the track. Paul slipped by and as I wasn't sure what had happened I took me some time to figure out the car was okay and it had been oil. I went into pursuit of Paul and I managed to close the gap but not before the flag dropped. As Paul was leading the C-class there was no reason other than pride to overtake him anyway.

First time thru the Villeneuve chicane


Class Laps Time Fastest lap


Jaap Blijlevens van Diemen RF 87 B 13 23:45,429 1:46,731


Tony Wash Reynard FF 88 B 13 23:52,720 1:47,409


Matthew Dean Reynard FF 88 B 13 23:54,339 1:47,916


Chris Stones van Diemen RF 85 B 12 22:11,029 1:47,676


Rebecca Dean Reynard FF 88 B 12 22:11,619 1:47,512


Paul McMorran Crossle 25F C 12 22:24,565 1:50,063


Ed Waalewijn van Diemen RF 82 B 12 22:25,030 1:49,018


Christian Schroter van Diemen RF 82 B 12 22:39,316 1:50,043


Jan Steenhart PRS RH02 B 12 22:45,086 1:51,042


Jean-Marc Mantei van Diemen RF 87 B 12 22:53,220 1:50,943


Stephen Collyer Dulon MP 15 C 12 22:53,771 1:51,327


Paul Hubbard Merlyn Mk 20 C 12 22:53,980 1:51,191


Nils Leuber Vaney 71 C 12 22:54,902 1:51,020


Thomas Rohmer van Diemen RF 87 B 12 23:29,547 1:53,061


Hanno Hess van Diemen RF 88 B 7 1:47,774


Rob ter Steege van Diemen RF 87 B 5 1:56,383


Roel Mulder PRS RH02 B 4 1:49,401