Although the second round of the TCR Eastern Europe is just around the corner, let’s go back to Oschersleben once again, more precisely to the qualifying session and the great performance of Petr Fulín with his Cupra TCR.
Petr Fulín, from Fullinrace Academy, is a very experienced touring car racing driver, a multi-champion from the European Touring Car Championship in the past, and belongs to one of the best in this class in Czech republic. Although he admits that he is closer to the end of his career than the beginning, he can still show unbelievable performance – just like at Oschersleben.
The problem for Fulín during his qualifying was essential. He had a broken shock absorber, and the car was truly hard to control in the way he was used to. “The car was unbalanced and difficult to predict. The front shock absorber’s fixing bowl couldn’t withstand the impact with the curb due to the wrong choice of spring length, and I drove ninety percent of the qualifying rounds without the right front shock absorber, that made the car bounce. That means I had to brake early,” explained Fulín. His mechanics didn’t want him to continue, but adamant Fulín was on a mission, regardless of the broken car.
Braking early to the corners was perhaps an advantage for Fulín: “It probably gave me better exits from the corners, and that was the key,” said Fulín, who was sitting third behind two Hyundai’s of the Janík Motorsport team. But in the last possible moment of the qualifying season, he set the best time! Despite his damaged Cupra, he was 0.116 seconds faster than second-placed Adam Kout.
The moment when Fulín parked his car in parc fermé was just all about his and his team members’ joy. It’s proof that a motorsport weekend can be dramatic not only during races but also during qualifying.