May 30, 2024


Steffen Faas has taken the early lead in the CHROME class championship, thanks to a consistent performance that saw him take two wins and multiple class podiums over the weekend.

José Eduardo Rodrigues nearly dominated Saturday, securing class pole and Race 1 victory, but a clash with Titan driver Sacha Lenz resulted in a DNF for Race 2, allowing championship rival Faas to gain an edge going into the second day of racing.

While Saturday belonged to Rodrigues, Sunday was Faas’ day. The German took class pole, won Race 3 and finished second in Race 4, missing out on a double win as Rodrigues fought to hold first place after being handed a starting position penalty.

Last year’s class winner and runner up seem to have picked up where they left off in 2023, continuing to challenge each other for the inaugural FIA Chrome Championship title.

While Faas and Rodrigues were the ones to watch on their respective days, the rest of the Chrome class has not been sleeping during the winter break. Clemens Hecker and Mark Taylor also made podium appearances, with both looking like they could be strong contenders as the season progresses.

Taylor, with a sole third-place finish in Race 4, currently holds third in the championship. The Brit faced some issues on Saturday but showed a resurgence of speed on Sunday and a promise of what’s to come in 2024. He leads Hecker in the championship by three points.

Clemens Hecker’s performance in Race 1 and 2 with two class podiums suggested he could be a contender to battle with the front runners for the top spot. However, Sunday brought some issues, resulting in low-scoring races.

John Newell showed some great speed at the start of his second full season in the championship. Despite a disappointing end to his first race day after contact in Race 2 damaged his steering, Newell showed determination on Sunday. He had already proven to be one to watch, finishing class P2 in Race 1 after moving through the field.
Newell is currently sixth in the championship with 24 points, four points behind Hecker and Luis Recuenco, who are tied at 28.

The Spaniard had a mixed weekend, retiring from Race 2. However, he returned on Sunday to take his first podium of the season in Race 3, keeping him ahead of Newell in the overall class standings.

New to the championship Luke Garrett found the transition from British Truck Racing to the Goodyear FIA ETRC challenging, with his first race weekend plagued by issues with his truck. Garrett praised the high caliber of driving in the championship and noted he would need to work hard to close the gap.

Steering issues hampered Garrett’s first race day, causing him to retire from Race 2 and miss Qualifying 2 on Sunday due to a cracked steering pump. Despite this, Garrett aims to understand his MAN truck better and find his pace to compete with the rest of the Chrome grid.

Race-by-race entry Bradley Smith, made an impressive Goodyear FIA ETRC debut. Although he didn’t score big points, Smith showed good race craft, navigating the weekend without any incidents.

Given that this was his first time driving a Freightliner after racing MAN trucks in the British series, Smith found the transition challenging, having to adapt to the Freightliner's different bonnet, driving style and handling. The young racer enjoyed his first event and hopes to participate in more races this season to gain more experience with the new machine.

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