The third rFactor 2 Race Of The Season took place on Sunday (19th June 2022) with the rFactor 2’s new IndyCar IR-18 and their new rendition of WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. After weeks of qualifying on the rFactor 2 competition system, 17 of the top timed drivers took to the starting grid for the 45 minute event.
The race was broadcasted on the Traxion.GG YouTube channel, hosted by Lewis McGlade and John Munro. Dan-Ove Brantholm wound up scoring the victory after an intense battle with Riccardo Fava before Fava obtained a penalty and served it with minutes to go.
Brantholm led from the start, leading all 38 laps in the 45 minute event. The Top 3 finishers were Brantholm, Fava and Paolo Nucci.
There were 17 drivers on the grid to take the standing start on the Laguna Seca straight. As the horns blared to signify the start, the No. 8 of Nicolas Lemoine did not go. Multiple cars piled in, and there were multiple retirements straight away.
Some drivers continued on with the damages, opting to take the repairs and continue onward. In all, there were only a couple of cars who were able to drive away unscathed, including Brantholm and Pablo Lopez Garcia. Fava got a bit of a sideswipe from an errant Jeroen Goudeseune, who had gotten into the second place driver Pauli Partanen.
Nucci, Jonathan Fraser and Bradley Sellars were also able to escape without too much injury, but were well behind off the drop of the flag. Nucci kept going with the damage, chasing behind Lopez Garcia. Fraser also kept going, about 25 seconds behind, and Sellars had enough damage to pit on the first lap.
After the dust settled, Brantholm and Fava were the clear two favorites well ahead of the field. Partanen had retired by the end of the first lap from the second position after the damage obtained on the start. Lopez Garcia, Nucci, Fraser and Sellars found themselves as the only cars left on the lead lap.
Stavros Mouzaidis, Juninho Tilambucano, Tom Track, Goudeseune and Tim Kay remained in the race. Retirements after the first lap included Partanen, Lemoine, Jeffrey Elliss, Sebastian Reeh, Albert Carrion and myself.
As I watched the horror unfold in front of me, I stalled it myself and got piled into from the two cars behind me. Whoops. Apologies to both of those drivers, although I don’t believe either of their races ended at that moment, only my own.
BATTLE FOR THE LEAD
Once it was determined who would be battling for the win, the race turned into a delight to watch. These races do have a mandatory pit stop that needs to be completed before the end of 45 minutes. On top of that, the IndyCar IR-18 offers two slick tire compounds, a primary black wall and an alternate red wall.
Most drivers, since it was such a short event, opted to keep the red walls on for faster lap times. The required pit didn’t require a tire compound change either, so drivers could stay on the reds the whole race if they chose to.
The pit stops came around the halfway mark. First to strike was Fava, who pitted with just over 23 minutes remaining. Brantholm responded by pitting the next lap, and when both cars had rejoined, they were right next to each other.
Fava had the heat in the tires and put the pressure on Brantholm as they worked around the lapped car of Fraser. Brantholm was able to maintain the lead, but Fava was pushing hard. Unfortunately, with eight-and-a-half minutes to go, Fava incurred a penalty for track limits.
As Fava worked his way down pit road, Brantholm just needed to survive for the remaining eight minutes. As for the rest of the field, most of the remaining drivers in the 11-car field made it the rest of the way.
Tilambucano wound up retiring just before the end of the event, while Track had a few off-tracks as he limped home to finish as the last car running.
rFACTOR 2 RACE OF THE SEASON AT LAGUNA SECA RESULTS
|4||77||Pablo Lopez Garcia||37|
RACE OF THE SEASON 4 – BTCC!
The fourth Race Of The Season will feature even more new content on the rFactor 2 platform. Next time, you’ll be able to catch the top competitors in the 2021 BTCC Toyota Corolla GR Sport as they take on the twists and turns of the legendary Donington Park.
There will be five weeks of qualifying when the fourth season begins, and the 45 minute race will take place on 7th August at 3:00 p.m. EDT / 8:00 p.m. BST / 9:00 p.m. CEST., the top split once again on Traxion.GG.
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