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Esports

Sebastian finally does the ‘Job’ whilst deJong takes maiden Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup win

Sebastian Job leads PESC 2021 Silverstone

Heading into Round 4 of its ten-round championship, the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup not only had a new track to enjoy but a brand new car for the supporting Esports All-Stars to drive. The battles were hot and brimming with dos and dares.

Based on form during the first third of the professional season, anyone would be forgiven for thinking that the title would likely go to the championship leader, Joshua Rogers. With only one finish outside of the top two over six races, the Australian’s brutal consistency was hardly looking threatened at all. Meanwhile, two-time winner Sebastian Job would be hoping to find his way out of an inconsistent run. Despite being one of only three race winners thus far, the Brit found himself languishing seventh in the Drivers’ standings thanks to a mixed bag of results so far.

PESC, Round 4, Qualifying

Even at this early stage of the season, 10 points for a pole position in Silverstone could be viewed as vital for anyone’s hopes of catching Rogers. Sitting pretty on just shy of 200 points entering Round 4, the Australian could have been almost 50 points clear of second had everything gone his way. As it so happened, things could not have ended better for the USA’s Mitchell deJong.

A picture-perfect lap saw the American deny Dayne Warren pole position and ensure intrigue as second and third in the championship locked out the front row. Rogers, though only 0.183 off deJong’s time, found himself down in P6 and not scoring any points in Qualifying for the first time in 2021.

The enigmatic Job would start in P3 just ahead of Norway’s Tommy Østgaard. Despite a podium in the first race of the season, the man starting P4 had only one other top ten finish to his name – that being the Main Race at Interlagos. After two hugely disappointing sequels, he would be hoping that a return to the top five in Qualifying would herald a return to those first-round highs.

Charlie Collins picked up the final point with a second appearance in the top five this season.

PESC, Round 4, Sprint Race

PESC Silverstone Spring Race

Job’s launch was timed to perfection and the Brit immediately went on the offensive into Village. A bit of door banging is par for the course on lap one, yet despite such a tightly packed and competitive field, nobody was quite expecting the carnage that ensued behind the top six. Some ten to fifteen cars found themselves in contact of some sort. A dazed Ricardo Rico was left tilted onto his 911’s right side.

Mitchell deJong’s first lap was spotless with the American opening up a gap of over one second to his title rivals. Østgaard attempted to unsettle Job’s podium position as the lap came to its end but the manoeuvre backfired, seeing him ultimately lose out to Collins and Rogers. Into Brooklands, the movement finally settled down – Carroll putting further misery onto the Norwegian whilst Rogers seized the momentum to dispose of Collins.

Lap four of seven and Rogers had been building up the pressure on Job nicely. It became too much for the Brit as a huge lockup into Stowe gave Rogers a free pass onto the podium. The 2019 champion wasn’t done either, pouncing on a minor slide from Warren out of Chapel to overtake his compatriot utilising Stowe once more.

The charge was ultimately nullified by deJong’s existing advantage however as the American took a much needed first win of the season. Falling further down the order to 8th, Østgaard would receive some compensation in the form of a reverse grid pole.

PESC, Round 4, Main Race

Sebastian Job leads PESC Silverstone 2021

A long hold on the grid didn’t disturb Østgaard with the Norwegian starting well from Bakkum. Sadly, the Main Race was also marred by a huge incident at The Loop, with just as many cars in strife as the Sprint event. One of these was Max Benecke, who would ultimately find himself non-scoring for the first time in 2021. Warren, though not suffering nearly as much, would have been disappointed to see both deJong and Rogers pass him so quickly into seventh and sixth respectively.

After missing out on another podium, Job looked more driven than ever. Teammate Carroll gave him no trouble into Stowe and Sebastian was already third. Just seven corners down the road and Bakkum was helpless to defend a brave lunge into The Loop on the second lap. It was clinical and spoke volumes of the type of driving everyone had come to expect from the Red Bull driver.

While one Bull found its horns, another found the trapdoor. Though gracious in being the support act, a bump from behind would see the frustrated Scot drop position to both Collins and Rogers. A beautiful rebuttal followed one lap later as a sweep around the outside of Brooklands landed him back into fifth.

It was time for Østgaard to roll out the defensive plays come the end of lap three, with Job eager to make short work of the leader. A confident, stout, stance turned into an overzealous error of judgement with Tommy spearing towards the outside wall onto lap four and Job finding himself unbalanced and down to third again within half a minute. He was lucky to find Carroll in fourth and happy to help a friend once again.

What followed will surely go down as one of the most spirited comebacks in PESC history. As if to set the scene further, Rogers did what he always does and capitalised on what played out ahead of him. Not just content with moving up into 2nd, he then swiftly moved into the lead by Copse. Bakkum chose not to take a similar risk to Østgaard before him.

Rogers failed to pull away from the Dutchman over the following couple of laps and for Job, this was a blessing. Bakkum was down to third just after the halfway point of the race. It was game on for the lead and all too soon Rogers was beaten by Job at the end of the lap.

Despite remaining within five-tenths of the new race leader, Rogers could not establish any sort of foothold. It was a defensive masterclass from Job who finally claimed his third win of the season and, in doing so, putting together a weekend that suggested re-established his title challenge.

Looking Forward

In typical Rogers fashion, the Australian still managed to extend his championship lead by one point. There was hope for others nevertheless with deJong enjoying a breakthrough pole and victory and Job celebrating the resumption of his title attack. PESC travels to Road Atlanta next where this thrilling series continues in two weeks time on February 20th. We’ll see you there.

PESC, Round 4, results

Sprint race

  1. Mitchell deJong (USA/Virtual Racing School)
  2. Joshua Rogers (AUS/Virtual Racing School)
  3. Dayne Warren (AUS/DirectForce Pro)
  4. Sebastian Job (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports)
  5. Charlie Collins (GB/Virtual Racing School)
  6. Graham Carroll (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports)
  7. Mack Bakkum (NL/LEGO® Technic™ Esports Team)
  8. Tommy Østgaard (NO/Coanda Simsport)
  9. Maximilian Benecke (D/Team Redline)
  10. Kevin Ellis Jr (GB/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Esports)

Main race

  1. Sebastian Job (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports)
  2. Joshua Rogers (AUS/Virtual Racing School)
  3. Mack Bakkum (NL/LEGO® Technic™ Esports Team)
  4. Graham Carroll (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports)
  5. Charlie Collins (GB/Virtual Racing School)
  6. Mitchell deJong (USA/Virtual Racing School)
  7. Kevin Ellis Jr. (UK/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Esports)
  8. Ayhancan Güven (TK/Coanda Simsport)
  9. Tuomas Tähtelä (FN/KOVA Esports)
  10. Jeremy Bouteloup (FR/Coanda Simsport)

Points’ standings after 4/10 championship rounds

  1. Joshua Rogers (AUS/Virtual Racing School), 265 points
  2. Mitchell deJong (USA/Virtual Racing School), 227 points
  3. Sebastian Job (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports), 183 points
  4. Dayne Warren (AUS/DirectForce Pro), 173 points
  5. Kevin Ellis Jr (GB/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Esports), 166 points
  6. Charlie Collins (GB/Virtual Racing School), 158 points
  7. Maximilian Benecke (D/Team Redline), 151 points
  8. Mack Bakkum (NL/LEGO® Technic™ Esports Team), 135 points
  9. Alejandro Sánchez (E/MSI eSports), 126 points
  10. Graham Carroll (GB/Red Bull Racing Esports), 126 points

Images provided by Porsche Newsroom media portal

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