With the first season of 2015 now well under way, the level of competition is heating up in the iRacing.com V8 Supercars Series. Road America was the battleground for Week 3 and for 30-laps, drivers from all over the world competed against both man and mechanical beast in the debut season of the official Ford vs. Holden battle.
As the cars took to the starting grid, it was veteran sim-racer, John Emerson of Team TTL, who took pole-position with a staggering time of 2:07.409 while driving the Commodore. Starting alongside Emerson in second was Ian Ford of Evolution Racing Australia. The second row of the grid belonged to SDC Motorsports driver, Martin Carroll and Team TTL driver, Vail Riches, with Michael Fulcher of SDC rounding out the top-five.
Green flag! No, wait…yellow flag!
As the online race began, mayhem erupted in the back of the field when SDC Motorsports’ Michael Cracknell failed to launch from his starting position. As cars moved to avoid the motionless Commodore, he was eventually clipped by Mario Vlasic. This contact triggered a chain-reaction of sorts which effectively ended the race for about seven different drivers including Cracknell’s teammate, Marc Melcher.
Back up front, it was clear sailing for the leaders as the traversed the challenging road course. Things seemed to be going smoothly for Carroll after his third place start but by Lap Five, Riches was hot on his tail. As the pair headed down the Moraine Sweep, Carroll took a defensive line on the inside as Riches attempted a pass on the outside into Turn 5. It was unsuccessful but Riches kept the pressure on.
Heading towards the uphill Turn 6 under the Corvette Bridge, Riches moved to the inside and made another attempt as Carroll tried to defend. At the apex of the turn, however, the cars made contact with Carroll’s front left tire meeting the front right fender of Riches’ Holden. As a result, the left side of Carroll’s Falcon leaped from the ground. The sudden loss of traction also caused Carroll to veer hard to the right as he was taken into the sand and ultimately into the tire wall. Sustaining damage, Carroll would unfortunately finish the race seven laps down in P17.
More SDC woes
As the race wore on, another SDC driver seemed to be having a successful run albeit while accruing several incident points. After starting ninth, James McKnight had moved up to sixth with only two laps to go. Not wanting to make it easy on him, Michael Fabian of Mad Cow Racing was also looking at gaining another position as the race worked towards completion. Heading toward the Carousel, McKnight initially went wide which allowed Fabian to slip the nose of his Commodore into the inside line.
What happened next was unfortunate for both drivers but doubly so for McKnight. Whether misjudging the turn or being caught off-guard, McKnight came back down towards the inside and the cars collided. Although Fabian was able to recover and finish out the race in sixth (and also score the fastest lap time with a 2:08.147), it was the end of the road for McKnight who was disqualified for exceeding the incident limit. Needless to say, it was a tough week for SDC Motorsports.
Back up front, it was all Emerson all day. After starting from pole position, the TTL driver led 23 of the 30 laps in his drive to victory. Not far behind, however, was Ford as he completed the online race in second position with 4 Motorsports’ Mitchell McLeod taking the final step of the podium. Rounding out the top-five were Beau Cattell of Synergy Sim Racing (fourth) and Corey Preston.
This Australian Strength of Field (SoF) race had a strength of 3791 and was split three times. The top-five finishers from the other splits were as follows:
|Split 2/SoF 2062||Split 3/SoF 1229|
|1-Dale Neish||1- Jason Cossey|
|2-Martin Creemers||2- Robert Klanke|
|3-Chris Brooks||3- Joshua Sawtell|
|4-David A Moore||4- Stanley Phillips|
|5-Jamie M Eaton||5- Adam Whybourn|
As Season 1 continues, the iRacing.com V8 Supercars Series heads to England for 24-laps at Oulton Park Circuit. Approximately 2.7 miles in length, the International course configuration features 17 various turns including the infamous Britten’s and Hislop’s – challenging chicanes which test even the most experienced of drivers.
With the series picking-up in popularity, so have the V8 Supercars Americas races on Thursday and Friday nights at 8:15 CST, with the Friday race broadcast by the JD Smith and Kane Kraft from V8s Online. Raced on official iRacing servers, this series exists to provide American friendly sim racing times to those who enjoy the series but aren’t able/don’t want to get up at 4:15am on Monday mornings for the main SoF race (whose SoF is now being surpassed by the Americas series).
As always, be sure to check in with iRacingNews as we continue our coverage of the iRacing.com V8 Supercars Series.