The Skip Barber 2k World Cup started Season 4 on Sunday with a unique venue: the oval at Twin Ring Motegi. This was the first time the championship has visited an oval circuit. As expected this added quite a bit of intrigue to the event and shook up the standings. A strong field of 38 started, but defending champion Richard Avery was not taking part.

Standings, results and links to video replays can be found at http://2kworldcup.com/.

Qualifying:

With very hot conditions and a strong southerly wind, the track was more challenging than normal. This was done intentionally by the organizers to make qualifying and racing more challenging for the low power car. Qualifying was over quickly with teammates Will Fisher and Rob Read taking the top two spots. Behind them the rest of the top 10 were Philippe Leybaert, Fahim Antoniades, Paul Malokas, Brian Doell, Matt Dafoe, Niklas Hjelm, Peter Cowan and Brooks Lyrette. The top ten were separated by 0.272 seconds and everyone that posted a time was within a second of pole position.

Race:

At the start, the whole field was able to get away cleanly with the teammates Fisher and Read entering turn 1 leading, however by the entry to turn three the leaders were four wide. This fight continued through to turn 1 where Malokas was able to get a run on the inside to take the lead. This was quickly followed by the first caution due to Leybaert being involved in an incident. He was forced to pit for repairs.

Will Fisher leads the field into Turn 1.

After restart the lead was swapped a few times before Antoniades came out ahead when the next caution period began on lap 12. This led to the start of the pit strategies going into effect. With a full tank lasting 26 laps and 33 remaining, it was a risk to pit early, but many of racers towards the back of the race took the opportunity to pit and fill up. None of the top ten pitted. This was followed by a short stint of green and  another caution on lap 17. This caution period saw many of the leaders pit, shuffling up the field with many different fuel strategies.

The top six racers fight through Turn 2.

Going green again to start lap 21, Antoniades was the leader, with Aurelien Bonnet, Hjelm, Ricardo Faria and Daniel Nogueras Carceller in the top 5. This was the start of the longest stretch of green flag racing before another caution stopped the tun at the end of lap 27. Bonnet was the leader but pitted for fuel. This shuffled the field again with Leybaert taking over the lead and David Grunhill, Malokas, Doell and Dafoe completing the top five. At the restart another incident caused another caution before the leaders reached the line. Leybaert pitted under this caution, moving Yann Laprevotte into the top five.

Yann Laprovette, Paul Malokas and Brian Doell go three wide just before the final caution was thrown.

Another short stint of green flag sim racing led to the final caution of the day and setup a one lap shootout for the win. The top five were Laprevotte, Grunhill, Doell, Chris McGowen and Malokas. At the restart Laprevotte maintained the lead but was being chased by a swarm of cars that were three and four wide through turns one and two. On the entry to turn three, Doell took the lead with Laprovette maintaining the inside line following closely. On the exit of turn four Laprovette was able to pull past Doell to take the win. Doell held on to second with McGowen, Peter Cowan and Paul Malokas making it five wide at the line. The gap from first to fifth place was just 0.068 seconds. The rest of the top ten were Neal Kemp, Karthik Pai, Martin Peck, Thibault Soubeyrand and Brooks Lyrette.

A five wide photo finish.

The win was Laprovette’s best ever 2k finish and is a great start to the season. The results will also shake up the standings for the early part of the season. Doell was the only sim racer from last season’s top ten to finish in the top ten. The 2k World cup now moves on to Lime Rock Park this Sunday for a more traditional road race.

Race Results and Championship Standings:

Pos Name Location Delta Pts
1 Yann Laprevotte France 50
2 Brian Doell Canada -0.017 45
3 Chris McGowen Northwest -0.02 38
4 Peter Cowan UK and I -0.042 39
5 Paul Malokas Northwest -0.068 37
6 Neal Kemp California -0.164 34
7 Karthik Pai Texas -0.649 32
8 Martin Peck UK and I -0.862 30
9 Thibault Soubeyrand UK and I -0.887 28
10 Brooks Lyrette Canada -0.93 26
11 Collin van Raam Benelux -0.942 24
12 Peter Classon Scandinavia -1.494 22
13 Will Fisher West -1.524 26
14 Ryan Devlin New England -1.744 19
15 Ricardo Faria Iberia -1.77 18
16 Rob Adams Canada -1.775 17
17 Tuan Tran Benelux -1.819 16
18 David Stefanini Italy -2.166 15
19 Barry Morrison UK and I -2.327 14
20 Greg Seitz Northwest -2.684 13
21 Scott Hanley Michigan -2.713 12
22 Daniel de Vos DE-AT-CH -2.907 11
23 Arjan de Vreede Benelux -4.045 10
24 Matt Dafoe Canada -4.87 9
25 Rob Read UK and I -6.07 12
26 Frank Winter DE-AT-CH -6.454 7
27 Edward Cavalier Texas -6.592 6
28 Philippe Leybaert Texas -15.301 8
29 Niklas Hjelm Scandinavia -19.058 4
30 Marcel Seidel DE-AT-CH -23.818 3
31 Aurelien Bonnet New York -40.214 2
32 Daniel Nogueras Carceller Iberia -41.535 1
33 Christopher Crome Midwest -49.754 0
34 Duncan Coppedge Northwest -53.985 0
35 David Grunill UK and I -1 L 0
36 Fahim Antoniades UK and I -1 L 2
37 Mickael Lamoureux France -5 L 0
38 Rich Jones UK and I -17 L 0
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