After his victory and record in France at the wheel of his Osella FA 30, Team Blue City Motorsport leader Christian Merli will be lining up at the 2nd round of the European Hill Climb Championship, the Rechbergrennen at Tulwitz north of Graz in Austria, this coming Sunday. The Osella works driver won the 5.050 km race last year, also establishing a new track record. There will be three official practice runs on Saturday and two race runs on Sunday, with the two Sunday times added up for the final classification. The European championship is divided into two categories: Category 1 for groups A, N, GT and S2000, and Category 2 for single-seaters, sports cars and silhouettes.
Merli victorious in the last three years
“Indeed, and the track record is ours too. We’ll try for the fourth consecutive win. The race in France went well, with the victory and a new record, but Simone Faggioli is very close. It won’t be easy, which is an extra motivation to give it our all. Our car has always worked well on this track.”
The reigning European champion describes the track
“The start is flat. A straight of about 500 metres, then a chicane. Another fast section with a series of double bends in high gears. Then four wide hairpins, a fast section and a 90 degree left-hand corner just before the finish line. One weather site forecasts clouds on Saturday and rain on Sunday, others predict rain for the entire weekend. We’ll see. After practice we’ll decide on the setup and tyres. It’s a well organised race and I like it.”
The European Hill Climb Championship calendar
14 April: Col Saint Pierre (France), 28 April: Rechbergrennen (Austria), 12 May: Rampa Internacional da Falperra (Portugal), 19 May: Subida al Fito (Spain), 2 June: Ecce Homo (Czech Republic), 16 June: Glasbachrennen (Germany), 7 July: Trento – Bondone (Italy), 21 July: Dobsinsky Kopec (Slovakia ), 28 July: Limanowa (Poland), 18 August: Course de Côte de Saint Ursanne (Switzerland), 1 September: Bistrica (Slovenia), 15 September: Buzetski Dani (Croatia).