On Wednesday night (13th July 2022), the fourth race event of the new iRacing Off-Road Championship Series had All-Stars and Championship drivers visit Bark River International Raceway for their seventh and eighth races of the inaugural 2022 season.
Cam Pedersen was able to lock up a third victory on the season on Wednesday night, winning the opening race of two. Pedersen is the only multi-time winner this year, and that fact remained true as Josh Fox won in dramatic fashion during the second race of the night for his first win of the year.
In the All-Stars, it was Luke Knupp winning yet again in the first race while Blake Reynolds was able to get through the invert best for the second race victory. Eight races in four weeks are complete for both the All-Stars and Championship Series contenders, officially the halfway point of the season.
RACE #7: PEDERSEN DOMINANT WHILE SCORING THIRD WIN
Although Bark River is the longest venue on the schedule, there are a lot more wide-open racing areas as opposed to the other longer course at Crandon. 11 laps would be on the menu for both Championship Series events, but before that, qualifying would help set the field.
Tommi Hallman surprised on Wednesday night by scoring the pole position and five bonus points. Jakob Rafoss, Connor Barry, Killian Dall’olmo and Keaton Swane rounded out the Top 5 and all scored points as well.
After the invert, Pedersen and Josh Edmundson would lead the field to the green. The first race is more likely to be the calm one, as the finish there will determine the second race of the night. That’s not to say there won’t be elbows-out racing, but Pedersen was quite easily able to pull off a third victory on the season when it was all said and over with.
The beating and banging was prevalent, however, as hopefuls battled for the invert spot. In each double event, the Top 8 will get inverted after each points paying round. After qualifying, eighth will start first while the pole sitter takes five points and starts eighth. For the second race, whoever finishes eighth will start on pole.
For the majority of the first race, Christopher Plumley had the transfer spot. Taking the white flag, he was well ahead of Felix Roy in ninth and Hallman in tenth. Towards the end of the lap, Roy was able to hunt him down, making a desperation move in the final corners of the race.
The two would make contact, getting hooked on one another. This allowed Hallman to get by both and finish in eighth, transferring back to the pole after winning the pole earlier.
BARK RIVER RACE #7 – TOP 10 RESULTS:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||INTERVAL||POINTS||AGG POINTS|
|1||48||Cam Pedersen||11 LAPS||50||50|
|2||58||Josh Edmundson||+0.868 sec||48||48|
|3||21||Keaton Swane||+4.296 sec||46||47|
|4||112||Alex A Bergeron||+4.763 sec||44||44|
|5||2||Connor Barry||+7.703 sec||42||45|
|6||13||Jakob Rafoss||+7.962 sec||40||44|
|7||18||Killian Dall’olmo||+8.392 sec||38||40|
|8||87||Tommi Hallman||+11.817 sec||36||41|
|9||91||Felix Roy||+12.204 sec||34||34|
|10||36||Christopher Plumley||+12.364 sec||32||32|
RACE #8: JOSH FOX WINS ON LAST LAP AFTER MIDFIELD START
With the invert to the top, and the fastest lap in qualifying, it would be a tall task for anyone to take victory from Hallman in the final race of the night. A clean start with Killian Dall’olmo in tow, the rest of the field would find themselves in trouble throughout the event.
Rafoss and Roy were two early casualties, as Rafoss careened up and over multiple times and Roy was forced into the path of the flipping No. 13. Later on, the first winner of the night, Pedersen, found himself out of contention and multiple laps down. It didn’t stop there, as as the race started to come to a close, the points leader, Connor Barry, was sent end-over-end after contact, ending his chances.
Coming into the night, Barry had finished in the Top 5 every race. The resulting incident left him finishing a lap down and outside the Top 10.
Up front, Josh Fox had caught the leaders. Fox started in 11th for the second race, missing out on a possible invert to the lead after a late charge following Hallman in the first race. Hallman had the lead, Edmundson was there and hungry for his first, and Fox was waiting in the wings to capitalize.
On the final lap, things got physical between Hallman and Edmundson. This allowed Fox to catch and make a desperation move three-wide with only two corners to go. The move stuck as he and Hallman stayed racing side-by-side towards the checkers.
As Edmundson was forced to slow for a track cut penalty, Hallman threw it low on Fox just before the line. It wasn’t enough, and by the closest margin in series history, Fox would win his first career iRacing Off-Road Championship Series event.
BARK RIVER RACE #8 – TOP 10 RESULTS:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||INTERVAL||POINTS||AGG POINTS|
|1||12||Josh Fox||11 LAPS||50||80|
|2||87||Tommi Hallman||+0.029 sec||48||89|
|3||36||Christopher Plumley||+1.204 sec||46||78|
|4||112||Alex A Bergeron||+1.458 sec||44||88|
|5||21||Keaton Swane||+2.260 sec||42||89|
|6||58||Josh Edmundson||+6.963 sec||40||88|
|7||11||Connor Parise||+3.257 sec||38||66|
|8||23||Nicholas Dachelet||+3.410 sec||36||56|
|9||18||Killian Dall’olmo||+4.525 sec||34||74|
|10||525||Cody Retzlaff||+8.357 sec||32||38|
POINTS LEAVING BARK RIVER
For the first time since the first race of the season, someone not named Connor Barry is leading the driver’s standings. Keaton Swane had a relatively quiet evening and stayed out of trouble in both races, scoring a pair of Top 5 finishes. With Barry’s misfortunes, Swane now leads the points by 11.
The pair nearly have a full race worth of points over third place, Wild Horse Pass winner Felix Roy. Roy didn’t have the best of evenings on Wednesday night, missing the invert by a single spot and then finishing outside the Top 10 in the second race. He’s 47 points behind the leader at the halfway mark.
Edmundson and Killian Dall’olmo sit fourth and fifth, respectively, both still searching for their first wins. Pedersen was a winner in one of the races, but due to his 23rd place result in the second, he stays lower in the standings than one might expect from a three-time winner on the season, currently ninth.
2022 IRACING OFF-ROAD CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES POINTS THRU BARK RIVER:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||POINTS||WINS||T5’s||T10’s|
|6||112||Alex A Bergeron||282||1||3||7|
ALL STARS: LUKE KNUPP, BLAKE REYNOLDS WIN BARK RIVER
In the All-Stars events, it was more of the same towards the front of the field. Utilizing the Pro 2 Lite Trucks once again, it would be a little slower and a little more packed up than what would be seen later in the Championship Series.
Luke Knupp and Zachary Drapkin were fast, and it showed through the first race of the night. Knupp dominated the first one, but towards the end, Drapkin gave him some fight.
The two traded the lead twice on the final lap as Drapkin sailed it off into the slower corners. Knupp was able to get the run off both times to take it back and ultimately win his third-straight race. Blake Reynolds finished third and the entire field would invert for the second race on the night.
Jim DeChamp and Ron Capps led the field to the second race. After the two made contact, the No. 53 Traxion.GG truck driven by the fellow writing this recap took control to lead briefly. As the faster drivers worked through the field, Reynolds was the first to get to my back bumper and make the pass.
Drapkin and Knupp also made it through, and the same Top 3 drivers were back there once again. Reynolds was able to hang on this time to score his first win in the series. The Traxion.GG teammates of Aero and Ryno both had respectable nights, scoring the fourth and sixth most points respectively when it was all said and done.
Here’s who scored the most points in All-Stars this week:
BARK RIVER INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY – TOP POINT SCORERS IN RACES 7 & 8:
|POS||TRUCK #||DRIVER NAME||POINTS||RACE 5 FINISH||RACE 6 FINISH|
|T-4||03||Keenan Kusan (Aero)||86||4th||5th|
|T-6||91||Ryan Burton (RynoGT4)||74||6th||9th|
|T-9||99||Michael Cosey Jr||66||9th||10th|
NEXT RACE: RETURN TO WILD HORSE PASS
Now that the four Short Courses have all been run on the schedule, it’s time to run them all back one more time in the second half. While Crandon will have the honor of opening and closing the season, Wild Horse Pass will be the venue for the first return trip.
In the first trip, Alex A Bergeron and Felix Roy were the two to score their first wins of the series that night. Will they be able to back those victories up or will we see more new faces in virtual victory lane when it’s over?
The All-Stars will be up first with a pair of seven minute races. 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|
|5||20 July||Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park||16||16||BEETLE LITE|
|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|