A special third round of the D-BOX eNASCAR International iRacing Series powered by Digital Motorsports saw Ryan Vargas win in his first outing in the series after flipping in a crazy wreck just laps before the finish.
Utilizing the quick repair for the final eNASCAR Overtime restart, Vargas was able to go from ninth to the lead almost immediately as he navigated the pack of iRacing‘s NASCAR Xfinity Series machines, most of which with heavy damage as the drivers had no quick repair left.
Vargas held off his help in Miguel Gomes as they came off of Turn 4 to the line. Treyten Lapcevich was able to hang on for third while racing live in front of the crowd at the ADAC SimRacing Expo.
With the podium finish, Lapcevich moves into the points lead over former leader Victor Barrales.
A FIRST TIME FOR PACK RACING
The eleventh race in the history of the D-BOX eNASCAR International iRacing Series would be another first for many reasons. It was a Sunday morning on the East coast of the United States, but it would be the afternoon in Nuremberg, Germany as the ADAC SimRacing Expo began to close out their convention.
While it would be the third virtual visit to the World Center of Racing in Daytona Beach, Florida, this race would be the first time that the series would stay away from the infield parking lot as they went wide open through the high banks of the oval for 50 laps.
It would also be the first start for Ryan Vargas in the series. An alumnus of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity and current driver in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Vargas merely tweeted out a request to join the series when things kicked off in Las Vegas. Two weeks later, he would be dicing it up… and winning.
FAST REPAIRS UTILIZED
A big part of the event would be the use of the included fast repair, available for each driver to utilize if needed through the event. Probably the one venue where it’s almost inevitable with how packed up things get, when to use the quick repair would be the most important part of making it to the finish.
Hopefuls such as Barrales, Ruben Garcia, Paul Jouffreau and Jake Cosio would find their quick repairs quickly depleted after early incidents before halfway. Gomes would use his with just under 10 laps to go, and then as the field was able to take three laps to go, the dreaded “Big One” struck.
Jouffreau, Barrales, Vargas and more would get involved in it racing three-wide for the lead. While Vargas likely suffered the most damage as a result, he still had the quick repair in his back pocket, but he would only have two laps to make it back to the front.
ANOTHER FIRST TIME WINNER
A lucky break came when Vargas was able to both make it back to pit road under power and also take the quick repair fast enough to avoid losing a lap. The result was a ninth place starting spot in eNASCAR Overtime. Vargas wasn’t out of it, but it wouldn’t be an easy road back to the front…
…Or would it? On the restart, Vargas made it up to seventh before entering Turn 1, then swung it high on Gomes and by himself on a third line as the field exited Turn 2. Gomes moved up and pushed Vargas, running side-by-side with Lapcevich until the backstretch of the final lap.
Both Vargas and Gomes cleared and went low. Off of Turn 4, Gomes went high, so Vargas went low and avoided the side draft, holding on for his first ever win in his first ever start. With it, Vargas becomes the eighth different winner in 11 races in series history.
SEASON 3 RACE 3 – DAYTONA TOP 10 FINAL RESULTS
|1||3||23||Ryan Vargas||Drive For Diversity||52 LAPS||17||40|
|2||1||46||Miguel Gomes||Whelen Euro Series||+0.028||6||35|
|3||2||20||Treyten Lapcevich||Pinty’s Series||+0.180||3||34|
|4||15||5||Jaiden Reyna||Drive For Diversity||+0.754||0||33|
|5||8||21||Justin T Campbell||Drive For Diversity||+2.148||3||32|
|6||10||10||Ulysse Delsaux||Whelen Euro Series||+3.421||0||31|
|7||5||56||Gil Linster||Whelen Euro Series||+4.519||0||30|
|8||16||51||Jake Cosio||Mexico Series||+4.610||0||29|
|9||18||1||Andres Perez de Lara||Mexico Series||+4.833||0||28|
|10||4||7||Jean-Philippe Bergeron||Pinty’s Series||+5.005||0||27|
LAPCEVICH TO THE TOP WITH TWO RACES LEFT
With Barrales out of a quick repair following the lap 47 “Big One”, the result for the points leader coming in would be a 15th place effort in the 18 car race. His three point lead over Lapcevich turns into a nine point deficit leaving Daytona as the series only has two races left in the winter season.
Cosio is also right in striking distance, only 10 points behind Lapcevich after his eighth place effort at Daytona. Jean-Philippe Bergeron moves up to fourth, 17 points behind Lapcevich, and Gomes takes his runner up run at Daytona and moves inside the Top 5 in the points.
Both Rajah Caruth and Alex de Alba fall outside the Top 10 in the standings after sitting out at Daytona. While it’s not mathematically out of the question quite yet, the missed race for both drivers will likely ultimately end their chances at claiming the limited series’ title.
POINTS STANDINGS AFTER RACE 3 – DAYTONA
|1||20||Treyten Lapcevich||Pinty’s Series||105||LEADER|
|2||39||Victor Barrales||Mexico Series||96||-9|
|3||51||Jake Cosio||Mexico Series||95||-10|
|4||7||Jean-Philippe Bergeron||Pinty’s Series||88||-17|
|5||46||Miguel Gomes||Whelen Euro Series||86||-19|
|6||8||Giorgio Maggi||Whelen Euro Series||83||-22|
|6||33||Paul Jouffreau||Whelen Euro Series||83||-22|
|6||10||Ulysse Delsaux||Whelen Euro Series||83||-22|
|9||56||Gil Linster||Whelen Euro Series||76||-29|
|10||148||Gordon Barnes||Whelen Euro Series||71||-34|
NEXT: BACK TO BELGIUM FOR ZOLDER REPRISE
Another return trip lies ahead for the eNASCAR International Series drivers as Belgium’s Circuit Zolder will be the next race in the series on 13th December. Returning to eNASCAR’s usual Tuesday nights, Zolder will host the final 30 lap road course battle of the season before the series finale at Darlington.
2022 ENASCAR INTERNATIONAL IRACING SERIES SEASON 3 SCHEDULE
15th November– Las Vegas Motor Speedway 22nd November – Canadian Tire Motorsport Park 4th December – Daytona International Speedway (9 a.m. ET)
- 13th December – Circuit Zolder
- 20th December – Darlington Raceway