On Wednesday night (20th July 2022), the fifth race event of the iRacing Off-Road Championship Series had the All-Stars and Championship drivers visit Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park for the second time in this inaugural 2022 season, the ninth and tenth races on the schedule.
Alex Bergeron inverted to the pole position and handedly took the first win on the night. In the second race, Keaton Swane was able to do the same, invert to the pole and win, but had to hold off a hungry Connor Barry to do so in the closing laps.
The All-Stars had a repeat of last week’s events, but this time utilizing the Volkswagen Beetle Lite at the short course. Luke Knupp survived late-race mayhem to win the opening event while the mayhem causer himself, Blake Reynolds, inverted to the front and stayed there to win race no. 2 on the night.
RACE #9: BERGERON GAPS THE FIELD FOR DOMINANT WIN
Top 5 qualifiers for the return trip to Wild Horse Pass included Barry with the fastest time, followed by Cam Pedersen, Swane, Quentin Dall’olmo and Josh Edmundson all earning qualifying points.
The fastest time would invert back to eighth while the eighth place qualifier Bergeron moved into the provisional pole alongside last week’s winner Josh Fox.
From the drop of the green, Bergeron was quick. Edmundson just couldn’t get around Fox quick enough to keep with Bergeron’s pace. The same was true for Barry, who managed to work his way from eighth to fourth, but well behind the leader once there.
As Bergeron went on to take his second win of the season, chaos would ensue behind.
At one point, three trucks found themselves flipped over in the middle of the pack, which meant they would start where they finished for the second race.
For the points battle, which Swane was finally able to take control of last week, the gap shrunk following the first race of the night. Barry was able to gain a full 10 points from qualifying and a fourth place effort. Swane wound up eighth, but that meant he would take the pole for the second race on the night.
WILD HORSE PASS RACE #9 – TOP 10 RESULTS:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||INTERVAL||POINTS||AGG POINTS|
|1||112||Alex A Bergeron||16 LAPS||50||50|
|2||58||Josh Edmundson||+3.241 sec||48||49|
|3||12||Josh Fox||+3.963 sec||46||46|
|4||2||Connor Barry||+8.504 sec||44||49|
|5||18||Killian Dall’olmo||+9.904 sec||42||42|
|6||91||Felix Roy||+10.414 sec||40||40|
|7||48||Cam Pedersen||+10.719 sec||38||42|
|8||21||Keaton Swane||+10.996 sec||36||39|
|9||36||Christopher Plumley||+11.677 sec||34||34|
|10||535||Tom Grady||+13.052 sec||32||32|
RACE #10: KEANE HOLDS OFF BARRY, HANGS ON TO POINT LEAD
The pole position was huge for Swane and his hopes to hang on for the championship lead. Barry would start in fifth, giving Swane an advantage off of the line. Swane wasn’t able to shake Felix Roy, however, and as the two battled, Barry carved his way into the third position.
Meanwhile, it was trouble for the first race winner of the night. Bergeron was like a pinball mired in the mid pack. Eventually, he hit a shelf of dirt on the inside lane and it tossed his truck onto its side.
He was able to drive out of it, but soon after he wound up in a barrier. The truck quit after five laps as Bergeron would finish on the opposite end of the grid in the second race of the night.
Up front, the laps continued to wind down. Barry looked to have the better pace over Roy, but Roy was running a fantastic defensive line. On top of that, Roy was keeping Swane honest in all of that, waiting for his chance to strike.
Barry had to go, though, if he wanted any chance at another win. He dove into the corner with a handful of laps to go and stuck it to Roy for the spot. Roy keyed up on the mic but it was unclear if he said anything in the moment out loud.
Barry would try his hardest, putting the bumper to Swane multiple times. Swane held strong, and on the final lap, a little help from a challenging Roy on Barry helped the points leader Swane keep the lead and take the win, his second on the season as well.
WILD HORSE PASS RACE #10 – TOP 10 RESULTS:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||INTERVAL||POINTS||AGG POINTS|
|1||21||Keaton Swane||16 LAPS||50||89|
|2||2||Connor Barry||+0.418 sec||48||97|
|3||91||Felix Roy||+0.615 sec||46||86|
|4||58||Josh Edmundson||+2.076 sec||44||93|
|5||48||Cam Pedersen||+2.457 sec||42||84|
|6||11||Connor Parise||+5.799 sec||40||68|
|7||36||Christopher Plumley||+9.309 sec||38||72|
|8||18||Killian Dall’olmo||+10.040 sec||36||78|
|9||22||Quentin Dall’olmo||+11.191 sec||34||44|
|10||6||Brandyn Proudfoot||+11.406 sec||32||58|
POINTS LEAVING WILD HORSE PASS
Coming into Wild Horse Pass, the deficit was just over 10 points between Swane and Barry, the only two drivers to leave a weekend as the overall leader so far this season. Barry managed to close that gap back to three points, despite Swane’s win in race no. 2.
The two have pulled away from the rest of the field, now both more than a single race’s worth of points ahead of the new third place driver Edmundson. Roy wound up falling back to fourth while Killian Dall’olmo maintained in fifth.
The Top 10 consists of the same 10 that entered there on Wednesday night, but some are in slightly different positions. Like Swane, Bergeron may have won, but he ultimately lost more points due to the DNF in the second race. Only three race events or six races remain in this inaugural season.
2022 IRACING OFF-ROAD CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES POINTS THRU WILD HORSE PASS:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||POINTS||WINS||T5’s||T10’s|
|1||21||Keaton Swane||445 (–)||2||7||10|
|2||2||Connor Barry||442 (-3)||1||9||9|
|3||58||Josh Edmundson||391 (-54)||0||7||8|
|4||91||Felix Roy||385 (-60)||1||4||8|
|5||18||Killian Dall’olmo||367 (-78)||0||3||8|
|6||48||Cam Pedersen||340 (-105)||3||5||7|
|7||112||Alex A Bergeron||336 (-109)||2||4||8|
|8||11||Connor Parise||334 (-111)||0||1||6|
|9||36||Christopher Plumley||317 (-128)||0||1||8|
|10||13||Jakob Rafoss||289 (-256)||0||2||4|
ALL STARS: LUKE KNUPP, BLAKE REYNOLDS WIN AGAIN
Usually filled with loads of trucks, the All-Stars this week brought out the buggies for the opening action on the week. Since his debut full-time, Luke Knupp has been bringing the heat just about every race he enters.
Knupp and Zachary Drapkin have been the stars of the show week in and week out, but lately, the full-field inverts have been wreaking havoc on the top drivers as they attempt to move back to the top.
In the first race, Knupp looked to be chasing Drapkin early on. Drapkin found a bad bump and shot the wrong way, allowing Knupp and Eliott Watson to pass. As the race wound down, an errant Blake Reynolds wound up in the path of the leaders, but thankfully they all kept going, allowing Knupp to win.
Reynolds would invert to the pole alongside iRacing’s Chris Leone. As Knupp, Watson and Drapkin worked their way back through the field, Reynolds had a much easier time being out front. Reynolds would go on to win over Adam Jones, the pair able to invert and stay up front.
Drapkin wound up third with Watson fourth, the pair tying for most points in week 5. Knupp only got back to sixth and would score the third most points on the week.
Here are the top scorers in All-Stars this week at Wild Horse Pass:
WILD HORSE PASS – TOP POINT SCORERS IN RACES 9 & 10:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||POINTS||RACE 9 FINISH||RACE 10 FINISH|
NEXT RACE: RETURN TO WILD WEST
The sixth round will bring races 11 and 12 back to Wild West, the one with the insane elevation changes. The last time out, Swane and Pedersen were both victorious at the short course in those pair of races.
Will Barry be able to find his way back to victory lane for the first time since the opening round? Will Swane manage another win at Wild West to extend his point lead? We’ll have to wait until next week to find out!
The All-Stars will be up first with a pair of seven minute races, back in the Pro 2 Lite Trucks. Both the Championship Series and the All-Stars will be on display starting at 8:30 p.m. ET / 1:30 a.m. BST on iRacing.com/live or the iRacing social channels.
2022 iRACING OFF-ROAD CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES SCHEDULE
|Week||Date||Track||Race 1||Race 2||ALL STARS|
|6||27 July||Wild West Motorsports Park||16||16||PRO 2 LITE|
|7||03 August||Bark River International Raceway||11||11||PRO 4|
|8||10 August||Crandon International Raceway – Full||10||10||BEETLE LITE|