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RESULTS: Thursday Night F1 League: Round 3 @ Bahrain GP

Friday, April 04, 2014

A few of regular drivers put forward a challenge to David Lord to come in and mix things up. Having Lord on the roster it had the makings of a great race. This race was going to be a commentators nightmare with 2 Scott’s and 2 Matt’s in the field.

Practice got underway and again ICE MAN offered his set up to the group. This levelled things out and made it more of a driver’s race.

Qually:

Practice over and the group was ready for Qualifying, as expected Lord showed his class in the F1 car setting an early benchmark. On his first lap he posted a 1:32:530. Only a few seconds behind the ICE MAN Scott McDonald blitzed across the line posting 1:32:941. The guys circulated getting more and more familiar with the track and their car set up. The build-up intensified as Qualifying came to a close with Lord taking pole followed by the ICE MAN, Jason Brooks, Sccott Daniels, Matt DeGroot and Matthew Sofi in his first race. Sofi the rookie consistently improved throughout Practice and Qualifying and was just off the pace of DeGroot. 

The Race:

The grid was set and the engines picked up and the 38 lap race was on. Lord’s helmet impeded his vision of the lights and didn’t get a good start from pole as she was swamped off the line. Composed as always he headed into turn 1, holding 4th place. ICE MAN was able to take advantage and grab P1 into turn 1. Everyone was aggressive but gave each other enough room to race. The field cleared turn 1 however Lord hit the gas a little early coming out of turn 2 and the back end stepped out and sent him into the wall dislodging his front wing. Not the start he was after and had to limp around the remainder of the lap to head into the pits. DeGoot also turned his car around that moved him to the back of the pack.  

On Lap 2 the action was all up the front. Brooks was hot on the heels of the ICE MAN applying as much pressure as he could, unfortunately when going for the pass he lost the back end and spun. He was able to regain control and get back up to race pace without conceding a position.

The Rookie Sofi also had some excitement in the opening laps and had to pit early for a few running repairs and some fresh rubber. ICE MAN went to work and by lap 4 had etched out a 6 sec lead over Brooks who had Daniels only 3 secs off his tail. Daniels also hit the pits early lap 5 and came out just behind Lord. Daniels was all over the back of Lord for 6 Laps on lap 12 went for the pass on the final turn. He got through cleanly however Lord wasn’t giving up easily and they were side by side down the main straight. Turn 1 side by side and again into turn 2. Daniels got on the gas a little early and lost the back end in an almost identical incident as Lord on Lap 1. Daniels hit the wall in almost the exact same place and too lost his front wing. As they were both in the Mercedes clearly the engineers didn’t set the cars up for turn 2 very well. This gave Lord P3 once again and only a few short laps later had to retire under what was suspected suspension failure.

Brooks shook off his early spins and put in some hot laps and by lap 13 was back on the ICE MAN’s tail. ICE MAN saw this and dove off into pit lane. Brooks with tortured tyres stayed out another lap with clean air to try and close the gap. The next lap Brooks pitted and re-joined just behind ICEMAN both on fresh rubber the battle continued. DeGroot and Sofi were in a close battle of their own swapping positions a number of times. Lap 21 saw Daniels hit the pit early. After Lord’s retirement this left Daniel’s in his own race holding P3. Brooks pushed hard and with clean laps found himself 1.2secs behind the ICEMAN on lap 23. He pushed hard under brakes and gave a little tap under brakes just to let the ICE MAN know he was there. Lap 26 saw the ICEMAN drive off into pit lane again for his 2nd and final stop. Last round ICE MAN’s pit crew were a little sloppy in pit lane however this race they were always ready for their driver. Brooks again stayed out and against team orders pushed on and on lap 28 got all crossed up. With excellent wheel and throttle control he was able to keep it from spinning saving valuable seconds. Brooks finally diving into the pits a few laps after. Brooks radioed ahead and had a fresh set of soft compound tyres waiting him for his dash to the line. This was going to be close as the ICE MAN was out on hard compound tyres.

Meanwhile back in the pack the Rookie Sofi was able to produce some consistent laps and put a comfortable buffer between him and DeGroot, however not enough to close the gap on Daniels.Brooks exited pit lane and re-joined a familiar 1.2 secs behind ICE MAN. This was going to go down to the wire. How much pressure can Brooks apply with the blow torch? Will the heat melt the ICE MAN?

Lap 32 saw Brooks pull out of the draft a little early and they were side by side down the main straight. The following lap saw a repeat of the drag race, except Brooks stayed in the draft a little longer and was able to dive in under brakes into turn 1 and take the position. ICE MAN didn’t seem to flinch at all as he crossed back over behind Brooks and was on the outside in turn 2 Brooks had executed a clean passing and ICE MAN ran a little wide. Brooks the gentleman racer he is felt there may have been unnecessary contact and conceded the lead. The battle perused and the main straight lap after lap became a drag strip side by side and both hard under the brakes the pressure on both drivers was immense. Until a slight lapse in concentration saw Brooks make an uncharacteristic mistake and spun on lap 35 dropping him 4sec off the pace. He could have easily lost focus and gave up but that’s not in his blood he recomposed and set off again chasing ICE MAN down as best he could in the remaining 3 laps. With his softer tyres he was stripping time off every lap however there just wasn’t enough laps for him to mount another challenge.

ICE MAN crossed the line and Brooks followed in P2 only 2 short secs behind. Daniels raced his own race and was able to secure the final spot on the podium. Sofi and DeGoot both crossed the line in that order, closing out a race that will not be easily forgotten. Well done to all those that completed and made it the contest it was. There was action from start to finish Next Round is in China and I am sure it will be as intense and action packed. So remember to book in now to secure your seat in the race.

 By Sam Owen

Race Results:

 

Finished Start Gain/Loss Driver Laps Time Fastest Lap Qually Time
1st 2 +1 Scott McDonald 38 01:20.731 01:34.427 01:32.683
2nd 3 +1 Jason Brooks2 38 +0:02.207 01:33.826 01:33.037
3rd 4 +1 Scott Daniels 37 +1 lap 1:34.997 01:34.084
4th 5 +1 Matthew Sofi 35 +3 laps 1:36.417 01:35.935
5th 6 +1 Matt DeGroot 33 DNF 01:35.6 01:37.231
6th 1 -5 David Lord 16 Suspension 01:34.3 01:32.530

Drivers Table:

 

 
      2014 F1 League
Drivers Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Race 5 Race 6 Race 7 Race 8 Race 9 Race 10 Race 11 Race 12 Race 13 Race 14 Race 15 Race 16 Race 17 Race 18 Race 19   Total Points Current Place
Scott McDonald 20 17 20                                
57 1st
Scott Daniels 13 12 15                                
40 2nd
Jason Brooks 0 20 17                                
37 3rd
Duran Nikora 17 13 0                                
30 4th
Evan Golbach 15 15 0                                
30 5th
Matt De Groot  0 10 12                                
22 6th
Matthew Sofi 0 0 13                                
13 7th
Iain McIntosh 12 0 0                                
12 8th
Nick Lowther 11 0 0                                
11 9th
Peter Hughes 0 11 0                                
11 10th
David Lord  0 0 11                                
11 11th
Andy Lardner 0 9 0                                
9 12th
Murray Conallin 0 8 0                                
8 13th

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

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