The European Truck Racing Weekend Summarized

Nobert Kiss continued to dominate the field, winning the first three races in Zolder, Belgium, until Jochen and Lukas Hahn were finally able to strike back, winning the fourth race. In the overall standings, Kiss now leads Hahn by 48 points,

First Race

It was another imposing lights-to-flag victory for the Hungarian champion Norbert Kiss as lap one disasters struck Sascha Lenz, Clemens Hecker and Luke Garrett, causing them all to not finish the first race.

Antonio Albacete tried to get the jump on Kiss off the line, but as the Hungarian has proved throughout racing this year, he was ready for whatever the Spaniard tried, covering off the move and keeping the lead into turn one. From there Kiss methodically stretched out his lead, crossing the line with almost four seconds on second-placed Albacete.


It did look for a few laps that Jochen Hahn was going to demote Albacete from his starting position, but although he tried Albacete defended his position masterfully. Crossing the line 1.3 seconds apart, the top three crossed the line as they started.


Fourth place overall belonged to José Eduardo Rodrigues, who didn’t put a foot wrong in the 12 laps of racing to add another Chrome victory to his 2024 stat sheet. Defending from Steffi Halm off the line, the Portuguese driver had a quiet race to his class win as Halm became occupied with racingAndré Kursim for fifth.


The Don’t Touch Racing driver made the pass and made it stick, being one of the few to make a position change during Race 1. Halm triedto catch her fellow countryman before the chequered flag but Kursim did enough to keep her 1.3 seconds behind.


Steffen Faas took seventh overall, second in Chrome, and will start Race 2 second on the grid alongside Lukas Hahn on reverse grid pole.The pair will be doing what they can to keep the two Titan drivers between them and class rival Rodrigues to try and stop him taking full points fromSaturday’s track action.


Mark Taylor, John Newell and Luis Recuenco were the last of the finishers from Race 1, with only Recuenco missing out on overall points in11th. The Spaniard seemed to have a difficult time on track, not seeming like a threat to anyone as he tried to find pace from his Iveco.


After failing to put the lap together in qualifying, Sascha Lenz cemented a bad day when an engine/ignition issue caused him to pull into the pits off the formation lap. Clemens Hecker appeared to have something break on his truck as he came through the Turn 8/9 chicane on lap one, pulling his truck off the track as a result. Luke Garrett also had an unlucky race as another steering issue – steering bolt failure – caused him to come to a halt at Turn 11.

Second Race

It was another clinical delivery from Norbert Kiss, who took the lead of the second race at Circuit Zolder after three laps, pulling enough of a gap to retain the lead after a five second penalty.

Kiss was quick to start making his way through the field from eighth, manoeuvring to fifth by the end of the first lap. It was then he came up against Steffi Halm, who was determined to keep the reigning champion behind her.


Going for a bold move around the outside of Turn 5, Kiss didn’t quite complete the pass, ending up side-by-side with Halm as they entered the chicane. With no where to go, Kiss cut across the chicane, coming out of the corner ahead of Halm. The stewards deemed this to have been leaving the track and gaining an advantage, which earned him a five second penalty.


Kiss had already passed Steffen Faas and Lukas Hahn for the lead when the penalty was given, letting the Hungarian know that, so long as he pulled enough of a gap, the race win was his. There was nothing any of the chasing pack could do as he extended his lead to ten seconds, leaving no doubt who the winner was.


Lukas Hahn had been on to take second on the overall podium along with a class win until his father Jochen Hahn demoted him to third with one lap to go. The pair still shared the overall podium, either side of Kiss.  


André Kursim converted his reverse grid fifth to fourth after some close contact with Halm in the closing stages of the race. Both Kursim and Halm were under investigation for leaving the track and gaining an advantage, but as of the chequered flag there was deemed no advantage to be achieved when they went off track.


It got close and personal as Jochen Hahn made his way through the grid, being caught out by Kursim braking early and going into his rear bumper. Both trucks continued on, but the concertina effect had Halm and Faas also caught up in the mess, all four trucks suffering cosmetic damage.


Faas had been lined up for second on the Chrome podium, claiming back some points on championship rival José Eduardo Rodrigues, but a brief shut down in the closing stages saw him tumble down the order, the pace and power of the truck leaving. He managed to stay ahead of Luis Recuenco for P12, the Spaniard once again struggling for competitive pace, but it took him off the class podium. Not only that, it gifted Rodrigues a bigger lead in their Chrome championship fight.


All of the Titan drivers overtook the Chromes before the chequered flag (bar Lukas Hahn), leaving Sascha Lenz sixth behind Halm, Albacete seventh behind him. It was a decent recovery from Lenz who started at the back of the grid after a boost and fuel pressure problem prevented him from starting Race 1.

Rodrigues finished eighth overall with Mark Taylor behind him, the pair of them completing the Chrome podium. John Newell had a pretty quiet Saturday, coming home fourth in class after some late race pressure from Clemens Hecker in class P5. Faas and Recuenco completed the finishers.


Bad luck, once again, fell on Luke Garrett’s plate. After his steering bolt blew in Race 1, Race 2 came to an end after just three laps when he suffered a brake failure. He managed to come back to the pits where the team worked hard to try and get him back on track but a fire in the discs saw him unable to rejoin the track.

Third Race

It was the Chrome class that had truck racing fans on the edge of their seat in Race 3, as Norbert Kiss added another win to his 2024 catalogue.

Sascha Lenz had his turn in taking the battle to Kiss off the line, but once again it was the Hungarian who came out on top. Lenz had looked settled in second until a late move from Jochen Hahn saw him dropped to the third step.

Outside of the top three, with the only swap being Hahn and Lenz, the rest of the Titan grid crossed the line as they started, with Antonio Albacete fourth, Steffi Halm fifth and André Kursim sixth.

Mark Taylor had done everything he needed to secure his first Chrome victory of the season, but hitting three penalty markers led to a drive-through penalty, knocking him completely out of contention. He finished fourth, 17 seconds shy of the podium where he had spent so much of the race on top.

Lukas Hahn took top honours, having sat second for most of the race until Taylor served his penalty. He will start Race 4 on the reverse grid front row beside John Newell, who, after finishing second in Race 3 and eighth overall, takes the reverse grid pole.

Steffen Faas was looking to optimise his performance today after an engine failure that couldn’t be repaired due to missing parts forced José Eduardo Rodrigues to withdraw from the rest of the weekend. As his closest championship rival, Faas aimed to capitalise, but a bold move on Newell for P3 into T8/9/10 resulted in a five-second penalty.

The incident was deemed similar to the one involving Kiss and Halm in Race 2, so in the name of consistency, a five-second penalty was given. This dropped him from second on the track to third on the podium at the chequered flag, ninth overall, just missing out on a reverse grid shift.

Luke Garrett had a quiet but successful race, finishing P10 overall and fifth in class, after Clemens Hecker received a smoke warning and Luis Recuenco joined Taylor in receiving a drive-through penalty for hitting penalty markers. Since the front axle change before the weekend, Garrett has been slightly lacking in pace compared to his competitors, but his luck seems to be shifting more positively.

Fourth Race

Another double podium for the Hahn duo, but this time Jochen Hahn stood on the top step, with Lukas in second as the Chrome driver became the stopper in the bottle, holding back a charging Norbert Kiss.

For the first time in 2024, Kiss did not take the top step of the podium, missing out on a hat-trick of clean sweeps. Lukas Hahn led the field off the grid from reverse pole, holding back the challenge of John Newell to secure his place at the start. With drama unfolding behind the leading duo, it briefly seemed that the two Chrome drivers would disappear into the distance and both contend for the overall podium.

Once the jostling settled down, the Titan drivers began making their way back up the field. Sascha Lenz got nudged in the opening stages, putting him on the back foot as he chased down his fellow Titans for overall points.

The Hahns received crucial aid from Antonio Albacete, who managed to hold Kiss behind him for three laps. This gave Jochen a head start, allowing him to get in front of Lukas and storm down the track to build a lead. Lukas played the perfect support role, holding back the chasing duo, letting Albacete and Kiss catch up to him but never pass.

Albacete finished fourth as Kiss finally passed him, completing the overall podium.

Lenz recovered to fifth after the start, crossing the line ahead of Chrome class second place Clemens Hecker, who returned to the podium for the first time since Misano. Mark Taylor came across the line seventh overall, third in class, fighting through the pack and nearly being wiped out by Newell and Steffi Halm to add another Chrome podium to his tally.Steffen Faas, André Kursim and Luke Garrett were the last of the finishers, meaning all Race 4 classified drivers picked up overall championship points.

Newell and Halm collided coming around the Turn 8/9/10 chicane, collecting Luis Recuenco in the process. Halm had been trying to push up the grid, looking to take sixth place from Newell when the two came together, ending up facing the wrong way on the track. In the dust thrown up from the incident, Recuenco tried to avoid them but instead found himself colliding with Halm’s backward-facing truck. He managed to get back to the pit lane, but that was the end of his race.

Halm was deemed responsible for the incident by the stewards and was given a three-place grid drop for Race 1 Nurburgring.

Source: ETRC, June 23rd 2024