It was the fifth and final round of the Formula Sim Racing 2021 IndyPRO championship on 9th January, and a new champion was crowned in the highly rated esports racing series.
The previous round at Apple Valley saw Yuri Kasdorp take the win for Red Bull Racing Esports, but heading into the final race it was set to be a four-way title fight over 300 miles of the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Dennis Jordan held the top spot on 168 points, with Williams Esports’ Petar Brljak two points back and Noah Reuvers a further six adrift. Jan Woznica sat in fourth position on 151 points, so required a stellar race and some misfortune from the front three to stay in the hunt.
Grid positions were decided by the drivers’ fastest average time over four flying laps, and Dennis Jordan stole a march on his championship rivals by securing third. Brljak was next closest in eighth place, with Reuvers and Woznica eleventh and nineteenth respectively. But with slipstreaming, fuel mileage and teamwork to be factored in, the title was far from decided.
With a stellar driver line-up assembled in this rFactor 2-based series, Royal Blue Racing’s Adam Maguire started from pole position. Dennis Jordan’s Red Bull Racing Esports team-mate Yuri Kasdorp joined him on the second row in fourth, so it was advantage Jordan as the green flag waved for the final time this season.
With the race underway, the Red Bull drivers snatched an early advantage with Jordan leading from Kasdorp on lap one, while second place qualifier Daniel Stepkowski tumbled down to fourth. Kasdorp took the lead on lap 12 and immediately set about helping Jordan fuel save. This strategy allowed a recovering Brljak to get a run on Jordan, but with backmarkers in the way it was to prove a fruitless endeavour.
Meanwhile, Liam de Waal – who started the race in tenth position – had made steady progress through the field and saved enough fuel to the extent he was able to pit on the same lap as Jordan. Due to his time spent running in front of Jordan, Kasdorp boxed two or three laps sooner, so he required an extra pit stop over most of his frontrunning rivals. This took him out the lead battle in the closing stages, leaving Jordan to fight off the competition by himself.
De Waal – driving for Wolves GR Esports – would slip past a nonchalant Jordan in the final few laps. With his championship rivals too far down the order to be a serious threat to his championship hopes, Jordan could afford to drop a position or two. A nervy final lap where the championship-elect made contact with the wall at Turn 1 allowed Roberto Pignataro an unchallenged second position, and gifted de Waal a big enough gap to cruise home for the win. Understandably shaken after his backmarker incident, Jordan eased off and breezed home in third, taking the German’s first FSR championship win.
As for Jordan’s championship rivals, Petar Brljak and Jan Woznica finished in eighth and ninth respectively, while Noah Reuvers had a day to forget, finishing down in 16th. In the final championship standings, Brljak stayed second, while Woznica jumped Reuvers for the final podium position.
As consolation, Reuvers and Woznica took the teams’ title for NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix, just ahead of Kasdorp and Jordan’s Red Bull Racing Esports.
FSR IndyPRO Championship 2021, Round 5 Indy 300 results:
- Liam de Waal, Wolves GR Esports
- Roberto Pignataro, Virtual Drivers By TX3
- Dennis Jordan, Red Bull Racing Esports
- Pascal Shmidt, Evolution Motorsports
- Janos Bracsok, Arnage Competition
- Liam Howard, NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix
- Yuri Kasdorp, Red Bull Racing Esports
- Petar Brljak, Williams Esports
- Jan Woznica, NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix
- Daniel Stepkowski, RSR
FSR IndyPRO Championship 2021 driver standings:
- Dennis Jordan, Red Bull Racing Esports 213 points
- Petar Brljak, Williams Esports 201 points
- Jan Woznica, NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix 184 points
- Noah Reuvers. NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix 179 points
- Liam de Waal, Wolves GR Esports 144 points
- Damian Skowron, Burst Esport 123 points
- Jacob Reid, Valle Esports 106 points
- Alan Terzic, BS+ Competition 105 points
- Carlos Martin, Valle Esports 104 points
- Thomas Wach, RSR 103 points
FSR IndyPRO Championship 2021 teams standings
- NetRex P1SIM Grand Prix 363 points
- Red Bull Racing Esports 325 points
- Burst Esport 238 points
- Wolves GR Esports 235 points
- Valle Esports 214 points
- RSR 204 points
- Williams Esports 201points
- Virtualdrivers by TX3 191 points
- Evolution Motorsports 186 points
- NetRex Grand Prix 145 points
Pictures courtesy of Felix van Delft, Formula Sim Racing