Frenchman Rudolf Schafer was very happy with his performance in the opening round of the 2016 FIA European Super 1600 Rallycross Championship, which took place at Montalegre in Portugal.
Schafer progressed well through out the two day event as he went fourteenth fastest in Q1 and nineteenth fastest in Q2 before the French driver in his Peugeot 208 went on to set the seventh fastest time in Q3. On Day Two, which saw much drier conditions, he finished Q4 in fifteenth place. However such was the competitive nature of the 33 strong Super 1600 entry for Portugal that Schafer qualified for the Semi-Finals in eleventh place.
Despite a valiant effort against some of the more stronger Super1600 entries in Semi-Final One, including fighting for position with Ondrej Smetana and Dimitri Malakhov, the Frenchman finished in sixth position and would go no further. However Schafer declared himself happy with his effort over the weekend:
“This result meets exactly with the objectives that we set ourselves arriving in Portugal. The most important move for us was primarily to stay on the pace of the competition.” said Schafer.
“Saturday was very complicated with three qualifying rounds to play on a very wet track. Despite everything, I managed to conclude Saturday ahead of Ulrik Linnemann who is favourite for the European title this season before I went onto qualify for the finals the next day.
“It is truly a good omen for the rest of the season and the next step of the British championship coming to the end of May on the circuit Lydden Hill,” Schafer explained.
After his performance in Portugal, Schafer currently lies in twelfth place in the Drivers Championship on 7 points.