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Merli: first round of the European championship in Austria

Christian Merli will be lining up at the first round of the European Hill Climb Championship, the 50th Rechbergrennen at Tulwitz north of Graz in Austria on Sunday. Merli has won at this event five times, from 2016 to 2019 and in 2023. 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 interview
“Yes, we’ll try to conquer the podium again. After a lot of work done by LRM Motors we have 480 hp and good torque at low rpms, but the regulations which were put in place in 2023 make it impossible for us to improve on that performance, while the supercharged engines easily reach 520 hp. We’re starting the European Hill Climb Championship in Austria with our Osella FA 30 Judd LRM and will be doing the first few events. After that we’ll take it one race at a time, since we’ll be participating in the Pikes Peak hill climb in Colorado.”

The track in Christian’s words
“The track is 4.460 km long. The start is flat, and there is at once a 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. We’re hoping for good weather; the forecast is quite uncertain for now. Three official practice runs where we’ll decide on the best setup and tyres for the two race runs. It’s a well organised event and I like it.”

The 2024 European Hill Climb Championship calendar
28/4 – Rechbergrennen (Austria), 12/5 – 52ª Subida al Fito (Spagna), 19/5 – 43ª Rampa Internacional da Falperra (Portogallo), 2/6 – 43ª Ecce Homo Sternberk (Repubblica Ceca), 16/6 – 26ª ADAC Glasbachrennen (Germania), 14/7 – 53° Trofeo Vallecamonica (Italia), 28/7 – 15ª Hill Climb Limanowa (Polonia), 18/8 – 79ª Course de Côte de Saint-Ursanne (Svizzera), 1/9 – 30ª GHD Ilirska Bistrica (Slovenia), 15/9 – 43ª Buzetski dani (Croazia).

Translation by Ruth Scheithauer

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