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Race Wrap - V8 Development Series R2

Two Fusion SimRacing drivers have decided to sweep out the cobwebs from their V8 rides and compete in Season 21 of the OSR - VRS / CPR V8 Development Series. Our drivers missed the first round of this fixed setup series so Round 2 at Watkins Glen was their first hit out. Not expecting any level of success upon joining the series, Trent Thomas and Warren Pickering were quite surprised when Thomas took pole and Pickering completed the front row ahead of 90+ cars.

Practice starts in the pitlane proved to no avail for Thomas who quickly slipped backwards at the start with nothing but wheel spin. Pickering got a great launch and was comfortably leading into turn 1.

Thomas struggled with the brakes early on and almost crashed into the inner loop on lap 2. The following lap at the same corner Thomas was pushed wide by an over opportunistic pass by an over committed driver. Thomas opened the steering to avoid contact but the passing driver over shot the entry pushing Thomas onto the grass and thereby receiving a slow down penalty which saw him drop to position 6. The other driver would receive a post race penalty for the incident.

Pickering had settled into a steady lead and was slowly building a gap between himself and 2nd place. The opening laps were filled with incidents for Thomas. Lap 4 saw the inevitable “Big One” at Watkins Glen narrowly avoided by Thomas who’s experience at this track alerted him of a car that ran wide at turn 1 wanting to come back on track. Thomas move hard right while the car ahead did not and contact occured. This then triggered a massive chain reaction crash that took out half the field.

By the half way point of the 30 lap race, Pickering had a 7.5 second lead back to 2nd place. Thomas had managed to catch up to the battle pack of 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th thanks to lapped traffic and chose to pit at the end of lap 15 to try the undercut. The strategy worked and Thomas was able to get ahead of the car that was running 2nd.

At lap 20 the pit stops of the front runners had been completed and FSR were now running 1st and 2nd on track. Pickering was still running excellent pace lapping a tenth or 2 faster than Thomas. Consistent pace of the 2 drivers saw them stretch the lead to 3rd place and Pickering took the win 5 second ahead of Thomas and 10 seconds ahead of 3rd place.

A happy and unexpected result for the team on return to the V8. 1-2 in qualifying which translated to a 1-2 in the race. Next week we race at Sebring International Raceway. A bumpy concrete canvas which will prove testing for all drivers.

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