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RESULTS - Race to Reality Heat # 8 @ Lime Rock

Saturday, April 27, 2013

After a weeks break we see ourselves back in the hills of Connecticut USA. An exciting short track with plenty of challenges. The long front straight giving plenty of drafting opportunities. Who's ready to win Heat No.8 of the Race To Reality comp?

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With Phill Rockstroh and Robby Thomae posting great times in practice all eyes were on them to see if they can post their first Pole Position. To post a sub 1 minute time around this track in the Ford Legends Coupe is quite impressive. Rob Thomae was quick to post a 58.9 and it seemed that that was the time to beat. In pure qualifying mode most drivers were opting for the 1 lap dash rather than staying out and stringing a few good laps together. This saw a lot of restarts from pit lane. Famous for "Race Of Champions" Kris Tarrant wasted not time in posting his 58.6 putting him on provisional Pole but that was not to last long a Phill Rockstroh smashed an impressive 58:323 placing him on P1 on the start grid. Congrats Phill and well deserved.

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With such close times for the entire field in qualifying the race was going to be very close. With Corey Henger and Matthew Barron in the commentary box we were ready to go. James Scanlan would start from pit lane with some mechanical issues.

The feild take off in great fashion as its Phill leading them into turn one closely followed by Kris Tarrant and Robert Hartley looking around the outside. To everyones credit the entire feild gets through safely. Heading up the hill and Kris Tattant shows his nose on the inside but Phill "The Rock" Rockstroh holds firm and leads the feild for lap 1. With 1 lap down Phill and Kris go into Turn 1 side by side until Phill tries to put the power down early and nearly loosing it in front of Rob Hartley and Rob Thomae. Thomae doing his best to put pressure on Hartley but Hartley being a seasoned professional is not phased. Phill finding it hard to get back into the rhythym drops back into P3. Ten minutes in and the feild has spread out a touch so all eyes where on the top 3.

With more bad luck James Scalan was unfortunately collected by Daniel Briant and both roll off into the grass. Suffering from suspension damage James tries to limp back to the pits and almost takes out 2nd place Robert Hartley. This allowed Phill to bridge the gap and take advantage of the draft bringing the gap back to 0.3 seconds. Down the front straight and Phill and Robert are bumper to bumper. As they approach turn 1 they catch Daniel Briant who gives way but with boys battling for 2nd it was 3 wide into the entry and Phill tightens the butt as he squeezes through into P2. Keen to stay away from Hartley Phill over cooks it again and loses control coming out of the esses almost taking out Robert Hartley. Phill would then need to make a lengthy pit stop putting him 10 laps down. This allowed Rob Thomae to move into 3rd and Luke Emerton with his beautiful ANZAC livery moving up into a credible 4th, Jonno Barrie 5th and Daniel Briant in 6th.

At this stage Kris Tarrant is holding a 1.5 second advantage over Robert Hartley but this was slowly and shurely decreasing. 15 odd laps to go this was building up to be a close finish. Robert Hartley now focused on the back of the bright pink car of Kris Tarrant the gap is reduced down to within a second. Using the draft the lap times are 0.2 seconds a lap quicker then Tarrant. Kris complaining of heating issues was finding it hard to keep Hartley at bay as 3 laps remaining we are now bumper to bumper. Just waiting to make his move Hartley is playing it cool knowing that he can choose when and where he was to overtake. All of a sudden Hartley hits the wrong side of ripples on the exit of the esses and almost puts it into the fence along no name straight. The 0.3 seconds that he lost he soon used the draft to drag himself back to the rear bumper of Tarrants car. Last lap and they are side by side at the top of the hill as Hartley tries to make his move but the Direct Clutch Service entry of Kris Tarrant holds steady to take the win ahead of Robert Hartley .193 seconds behind and Robby Thomae in 3rd.

Fin Pos Driver Start Pos Car # Interval Fastest Lap Time
1 Kris Tarrant 2 18 0 58.765
2 Robert Hartley 3 2 -0.193 58.962
3 Robby Thomae 4 52 -11.08 59.253
4 Luke Emerton 6 90 -45.439 59.813
5 Jonno Barrie 7 16 -2 L 59.89
6 Daniel Briant 8 33 -3 L 01:00.5
7 Phill Rockstroh 1 14 -10 L 58.88
8 James N Scanlan 5 9 -32 L 59.369
9 Andrew Holford 9 81 -41 L


Current Bridesmaid: Robby Thomae

Current Artist: Luke Emerton

By Shane Gilfeather


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