Jochen Hahn wins the FIA European Truck Racing Championship for the sixth time
With almost 60,000 spectators on site, Jochen Hahn won the title of the European Truck Racing Champion already at the penultimate round of this year's FIA European Truck Racing Championship held on Circuit Bugatti in Le Mans, France.
Unlike most of the ETRC events, the race weekend in Le Mans is a classic two-day event. It started shortly after sunrise on Saturday morning with free practice sessions while the track was still wet. By the time the qualifying session and the Super Pole took place around noon, the track had already dried off. Iveco pilot Jochen Hahn got hold of the pole position for the first race – closely followed by MAN pilot Sascha Lenz.
During the opening lap, rain set in again, but Jochen remained unflappable. Right at the start, he prevailed over Lenz and his Spanish MAN colleague Antonio Albacete. On the drying track, the Hahn Iveco left both of his competitors behind and achieved a safe victory. This allowed Jochen to win the 2019 FIA ETRC title already at the second race on Saturday – as long as he wouldn't finish more than three ranks behind Albacete at the second race.
For the team championship of the FIA ETRC, Iveco pilot Jochen Hahn and his teammate Steffi Halm join their forces as "the bulls on Iveco Magirus". This time, they finished second on the team podium.
Due to the reversed grid, Jochen started the second race from 8th position on the grid. Right at the first bend, the pilot from Altensteig shot his truck up to third rank, when the race was red-flagged due to a collision between Jochen's Iveco colleague René Reinert and the Hungarian Mercedes pilot Norbert Kiss. When the race was restarted, there was no gap for the Hahn Iveco anymore. Jochen thus lined up right behind Antonio Albacete's truck. He followed the Spanish truck like a shadow – after all, there was no need to risk any more than that. Finishing 6th, Jochen Hahn thus won the FIA European Truck Racing Championship for the 6th time.
With André Kursim and Jochen's teammate Steffi Halm topping the podium, there were two more Iveco trucks built by Team Hahn Racing on the top ranks.
This time, "the bulls on Iveco Magirus" clearly won the first rank at the team championship.
However, there was not much time to celebrate this victory. After all, the racing action on Sunday would also start early in the morning again. While the weather had remained dry most of the Saturday, enduring rain set in on Sunday. Due to the wet track conditions, Jochen didn't find the ideal racing line at the Super Pole and finally finished sixth on the starting grid.
At the first race on Sunday, Jochen delighted the spectators with some spectacular duels with André Kursim and Sascha Lenz. On the drying track, he fought close wheel-by-wheel duels with both of the pilots and for several laps. In the end, he finally managed to pass them thus lining up third and right behind Adam Lacko (CZE) and Antonio Albacete (ESP).
"The bulls on Iveco Magirus" also finished on the podium once again – and also on 3rd rank this time.
At the final race of the weekend, the old and new champion once again got off to a good start and managed to rank up some positions in the early stages of the race. In the meanwhile, Sascha Lenz managed to take the lead. Soon Jochen ranked third and thus right behind Steffi Halm. Due to the balanced performance levels of the Iveco race trucks, however, he could not just pass by his teammate. Only after about half of the race, the race driver from Altensteig finally used his chance to pass Steffi Halm at a short moment of lacking attention – thus pushing his truck up to second rank. On the very front, Sascha Lenz had already increased the gap towards his chasers. There was no way to endanger his victory anymore. Jochen Hahn and Steffi Halm completed the podium – on two Iveco trucks built at the Hahn workshops.
They did not only finish second on the team podium again. Jochen and Steffi also won the 2019 FIA ETRC team championship early on.
Jochen Hahn and the whole Team Hahn Racing are now looking back on some tough and stressful weeks. Having won the title of European Truck Racing Champion for the 6th time, one of the team's biggest dreams has come true.
We sincerely want to thank our whole team, all of our partners and sponsors and, of course, all of our fans for their great support.
In just about a week, on October 5th and 6th, the final of the 2019 FIA European Truck Racing Championship will take place on Circuito del Jarama north of the Spanish capital Madrid.