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Race Report by Mikael Hellbom
We have great news from Finland for all XRAY enthusiasts. On July 22, Team XRAY Finland took part in the championship-deciding round four of the hugely-popular M8 ChampionshipS. The race day couldn’t have been better for Team XRAY Finland, as Ari Heinonen and Teemu Leino grabbed a brilliant double victory and there were seven XRAY 808 drivers in the main final.

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Qualifications were a battle between the Heinonen brothers; Arto was TQ in round one, while Ari took TQ in round 2 and was the only driver who managed an 8-lap result. Q3 was again Arto’s by a margin of 0.235sec ahead of Ari.

In semi-final A, Teemu drove to an easy win ahead of the rest five drivers, all of whom managed to get results which put them into the main final. Ari Heinonen was the man to beat in semi-final B, while Joseph Quagraine suffered from small problems.

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When the main final started, Teemu and Ari made minor mistakes and Petri Myllari took the lead after start. He kept the lead for 5 laps before Ari and Teemu started to close the gap. After the 7min mark Teemu and JQ went in for fuel. Ari took the lead by the 8min mark. Ari came in at the 9min mark, and Teemu and JQ started to drive very fast – getting closer and closer every lap. When the race had been going for 15 minutes Teemu and JQ came in for fuel. Three minutes later it was time for Ari’s stop. At this point Joseph got very close to Ari, and Teemu had fallen off the pace a bit. After 20 minutes of intense racing JQ had big troubles; his antenna tube fell out and he had to come into pit lane to have his car fixed. Ari started to build a comfortable gap to Teemu and others. Finally victory was secured after Teemu came to his fourth fuel stop; by then Ari had more than a 1-lap lead.

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It seemed that 9 minutes of engine runtime, a great mechanic and steady driving were the keys to victory of our fourth and final Finnish Championship race. In the same race, Ari managed to secure the Finnish Champion title for 2009.

It was his third consecutive title in the Finnish Championship series (2007, 2008, 2009).

Final race results

1. Ari Heinonen XRAY XB808
2. Teemu Leino XRAY XB808

3. Petri Mylläri
4. Joonas Vuojolahti
5. Markku Honkanen
6. Juha Sartesuo
7. Marko Eklund XRAY XB808
8. August Poutiainen XRAY XB808

9. Jarno Siltanen
10. Arto Heinonen XRAY XB808
11. Joseph Quagraine XRAY XB808
12. Matias Kuusinen XRAY XB808

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Final championship results

1. Ari Heinonen XRAY XB808

2. Joonas Vuojolahti
3. Teemu Leino XRAY XB808
4. August Poutiainen XRAY XB808

5. Petri Mylläri
6. Markku Honkanen
7. Arto Heinonen XRAY XB808
8. Matias Kuusinen XRAY XB808

9. Juha Sartesuo
10. Mikko Mäkinen XRAY XB808

Ari Heinonen's Set-up sheet.

Teemu Leino's Set-up sheet.