A visit to the virtual finger-lakes of Watkins Glen played host to Round Six of the GRAND-AM iRacing.com Online Sports Car Series, where the Riley Mk XX Daytona Prototype and Ford Mustang FR500S continued their 12 week Championship on the ‘Boot’ configuration. Open to members of the iRacing.com Motorsport Simulation service, the mixed class online racing series will crown an overall and a further nine divisional champions for each of the categories at the end of its season.
A pole-to-flag victory for Kenneth O’Keefe in his second race of the week was enough to extend the Canadian sim racer’s lead at the top of the overall and Division One standings to 71 points ahead of Elias Varis. The 216 points O’Keefe earned at the millimetre-precise digital-replica of the legendary Watkins Glen circuit was the highest total for the week, 13 more than Andras Kiraly and 26 better than Matthijs Ottenhoff.
Although Division Two leader Rygh Galloway dropped 32 points to Robert Woloschuk in the virtual Daytona Prototype class, thankfully for the American, his main divisional rival, Martin Dube lost seven marks on him despite claiming a top five finish in his solitary race at The Glen. A season best score of 151 points for Christopher David Bente following a podium finish in his first race of the week and a subsequent top five placed the European as Division Three’s top sim-racer of the week. Bente’s recent improvement in form has seen him rise into the top ten of the standings, and he now sits 117 points away from current divisional leader, Richard Hasenhuetl.
In Division Four, the fight for honours at iRacing’s rendition of the Watkins Glen Boot configuration came down to the wire with the top four online-racers separated by a mere three points. Heading the group with 113 points to his name was Richard Sobolewski, who just edged-out Joshua Gudorf, Harold Linville and incumbent overall divisional leader Ed DeVoe. Although Division Five points leader Massimiliano Biekar had a ‘week to forget’ and when haemorrhaged 60 points to top-scorer Ian Bundell, the Italian still holds a relatively healthy lead of 35 marks over John Keefe.
The 100 points Jory Holbrook collected for a top ten finish in the virtual Daytona Prototypes, posted the American at the top of the Division Six standings for the week and extends his margin over Steve Groninga to 119. Pipped to the weeks top divisional score for Round Six by Texan Vishnu Rajam, European sim-racer Thomas Althaus continues to hold a commanding lead in the Division Seven standings. Bruce Perry continues to lead Division Eight as the series heads to Indianapolis for its next round, as does Chris Moerike in the battle for the ninth division. Meanwhile in final divisional battle of the championship, Trevor Hill has seen his overall lead cut to just nine points, as Marc Docteur bears down on his position.
Ford Mustang FR500S
As the half-way mark of the season is reached, Dennis Grebe continues to hold a commanding and seemingly unassailable lead of 373 points in the Ford Mustang class of the GRAND-AM iRacing.com Online Sports Car Series. Grebe secured the second highest score of the week at Watkins Glen behind Brian Strodtbeck, who has moved the into the championship third position, 33 points behind Scott Michaels. Flying the flag for the Australia/New Zealand club, Stuart Wood has extended his lead at the head of division Two following his maximum haul in Round Six. Leading the case to close the gap of 103 points to Wood, is Tim Classens, who posted the third highest total of the week behind Kieron Peace, after both online racers posted victories at the digital-rendition of Watkins Glen.
A Ford Mustang Class win in his second race at The Glen was enough to post John Ada at the top of the Division Three standings for the week, ousting Billy Smith II and Alexandre Fornieles by a handful of points. However, Frenchman Fornieles continues to stand atop the overall divisional fight, with a 38 point margin in his pocket over Ryan Cowley. Although Marc Bechmann continues to head Division Four, it was Giacomo Angeli claiming the plaudits for the week’s top performance. Now 116 points off the overall leader with just four weeks of results registered so far, the Antipodean looks set to be a contender in the closing rounds.
A pair of class victories from five starts for Patxi Canada posted the Iberian as the Division Five top performer at Watkins Glen, although it did little to dent the divisional lead of Raimo Piiksi who currently holds a 43 point advantage over Tom Czarny. In the sixth division Paul Bujnowski now holds a 26 point lead over Ryan Deady after earning the fourth highest total of the round behind Australian Shaun Field. By taking the second highest total of the week behind Mark Fletcher, Texas-based Kyle Guerry moves into third position of the GRAND-AM iRacing.com Online Sports Car Series Ford Mustang Class’ seventh division behind Dustin Peterson and Ole Pedersen. In Division Eight, Evgeny M Garanin continues his relentless charge to the divisional title with the highest score of the week; likewise for Mike ‘Hortons’ Hogg, who has extended his advantage at the top of Division Nine.
As the GRAND-AM iRacing.com Online Sports Car Championship heads to its next round at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Tom Kotowski is the man to beat in Division Ten, with the European extending his lead over Russ Allison to 44 points, despite the week’s top score going to Rolando Alvarez.