No place like home! Broekman dominated on home turf at Zandvoort.

The penultimate round of the iRacing.com V8 Supercars Series presented by BigPond took the teams and drivers to the Netherlands for the first time this year and a rendez-vous with Zandvoort, a 4.3km track in length with a total of 13 turns. This week the drivers would need to save fuel to make it home without having to stop and with the championship battle coming down to the wire with Madison Down and Justin Ruggier battling it out, there was a lot to race for. Which driver would step-up and make their mark and get closer to capturing this season’s title?

Rens Broekman would return to the series and, with this being his home track, the Dutchman wouldn’t settle for anything but a win.  Sure enough, Broekman would start the race from the best possible position: pole position.  Using all of his local knowledge, Broekman became the only sim racer to break the 1:41 bracket, doing a 1:40.930 ahead of Down’s 1:41.076. Down’s team mate Mitchell McLeod qualified third on a 1:41.142 while Ruggier would start fourth on a 1:41.294. On the third row of the grid we had Vail Riches and Joshua Muggleton while Petteri Kotovaara and John Emerson started from seventh and eighth with Cal Whatmore and Shaun Kelly rounding-out the top ten qualifiers.

Down got the jump on Broekman at the start.

When the lights went green it was Down getting the jump on Broekman into Tarzan Bocht (aka Turne One), while Muggleton slotted into fourth behind McLeod after leap-frogging Ruggier and Riches off the line. Undettered, Broekman bided his time in the opening laps, before regaining control of the race on Lap Six.  Down out-braked himself and ran it deep into Turn One, allowing Broekman to get underneath and take a lead that was never threatened.

Lap 11 saw Riches night turn into a nightmare when he nerfed the back of Ruggier.  The twosome slowed whereupon McLaughlin accidently hit the back of Riches, spinning him down to 14th.   The following lap saw Ruggier have a massive moment through the Esses and run wide onto the dirt out of Turn Six, dropping a spot to McLaughlin in the process.

Down grabbed the lead from Broekman at the green.

When the lights went green it was Down getting the jump on Broekman into Tarzan Bocht (aka Turne One), while Muggleton slotted into fourth behind McLeod after leap-frogging Ruggier and Riches off the line. Undettered, Broekman bided his time in the opening laps, before regaining control of the race on Lap Six.  Down out-braked himself and ran it deep into Turn One, allowing Broekman to get underneath and take a lead that was never threatened.

Lap 11 saw Riches night turn into a nightmare when he nerfed the back of Ruggier.  The twosome slowed whereupon McLaughlin accidently hit the back of Riches, spinning him down to 14th.   The following lap saw Ruggier have a massive moment through the Esses and run wide onto the dirt out of Turn Six, dropping a spot to McLaughlin in the process.

Unfortunately for McLeod, whilst running in third place on Lap 13, a most untimely Java update resulted in a spin into the Turn Four wall.  Although McLeod rolled his Falcon, he was able to keep going as the car flipped back onto its wheels  —  only to pit and retire from the race.   On Lap 18 Ruggier would regain the position he lost to McLaughlin a few laps earlier when he made the pass on the inside into of Turn One.

An almost-championship-changing moment unfolded on Lap 22 as Ruggier was catching up to Muggleton.  Muggleton pulled off-line to get some draft from a lapped car in front, with Ruggier following suit.  But the lapped car slowed, so Muggleton pulled back to the racing line.  Ruggier took to the inside and made contact with both the inside wall and the lapped car, and only a great save from Ruggier kept him in the race.  Two laps later, Ruggier got a good run down the main straight and into turn one, and made the pass on Muggleton for third place, earning some more championship points and keeping the points battle well and truly alive.

While the battle up front was relatively uneventful, there was no shortage of action further down the order.

But it would be Rens Broekman’s day in the Netherlands, as he cruised to the win in the main race, having  won the early round as well.  Down finished second ahead of Ruggier with McLaughlin fourth ahead Muggleton and Shaun Kelly.  Thomas van Bussel got into the back of Richard Hamstead sending him off the track and relegating Hamstead back to ninth. Petteri Kotovaara would finish in eighth place after gaining a position on the last lap, while Riches fought back to tenth place after his earlier incident.

Scott Fountain was the biggest mover in the race, making his way up from 24th to 11th at the finish ahead of Mitchell Abrahall, Cal Whatmore, Corey Osborne and Martin Turner.   Nick Rainbird, Simon Black, Marlon J McMullen and Christopher Osborne where the final drivers on the lead lap, while Marty Atkins and John Emerson were the last cars to finish with McLeod, Carwyn May and Samuel Collins all suffering DNFs.

The final round of the championship will be held at Brands Hatch.

Top Five Drivers – Championship Points – Overall
1.    Madison Down – 2067
2.    Justin V Ruggier – 2056
3.    Joshua Muggleton – 1858
4.    Mitchell McLeod – 1801
5.    Vail Riches – 1755

Split Two Winner: Jon Latham

Split Three Winner: Peter Finn

To watch the full race – Click Here

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