Sonicrealms Racing are very proud to have won the final race of the Masters of Endurance league in GT1, our first win in our debut season. GT2 came 5th. This was after the last round managing 2nd place in both classes.
Driving for SR in GT1 would be Rudy van Buren, Christopher Felder and Sebastian Hutchinson. In GT2 the drivers were Jason Lovett, Johannes Makela and Chris Ford.
The race was our last chance to show the improvement the team has made over the last year, and to better the last races results we would need to win in both classes.
GT1 drove brilliantly, and for a change we didn't have any bad luck, with no disconnects or strange lag issues. We ended the race in first position for what is easily the best result for Sonicrealms Racing in our short, but successful GTR history. The whole team cannot thank the drivers enough for their efforts!
GT2 had a great start, moving into 2nd place from 7th in the first lap, but then Jason Lovett had a crash, then at the end of his stint he had a lag issue again coming into the pits, incurring a DT. This dropped us to the back but the guys managed to come back and eventually finish in a respectable 5th place.
- Since this was the final race of this MoE season, this was our last chance to get a MoE victory this season and after being so close in Aston historic everybody was motivated to make it this time!
I did the quali for this race, and before it I already said that I would prefer to grab 3rd place and it worked out.
This race howie and seb preferred if I would take care of the start, so at 14:00 UTC it was time to rumble...
With a good start I could grab second place into the first turn and tried to get passed the FZR from Johannes in the first lap but he kept every gap closed and drove a little faster in the first 10 laps of the race. Though the gap didn't get any bigger then 1 second max, and when the first backmarkers came he caught them on a bad place and I was able to close the gap and attack him straight away and take the lead. From that point I was able to drive away and stretch the gap to 6 seconds before the first pitstop. My second stint was mostly maintaining my gap, although that didn't go as 'easy' as I wanted because just before the first pitstop I collided with a backmarker and took some left front damage. It what caused some understeer, though after the second stint the gap was 8 seconds to Dave Williams and howie could take over my car without Dave breating down his neck!
All in all I can just say that everybody did a brilliant job and this was 100% a well deserved win for Sonicrealms!
It's also a good feeling since me and chriskart joined SR to get it to the top, and look where we are now, just fantastic!
- After the two hour mark I took over the car from Rudy who managed to pull a big gap during his stints to My3id and RACE-STAR ConverTTable which showed it was the basis for our win.
The car was slightly damaged but still in such a good condition which let me to drive confident, with reasonable lap times and without major flaws except some problems due to upcoming traffic.
I could expand the gap to My3id and hold it constant to RACE-STAR ConverTTable.
My second stint began also pretty good until I made a mistake by passing a GT2 car which led me to spin and get some damage on the right hand-side of the car.
I knew that I had to make up the lost time now and drove after the accident my best laps of that day, but it was barely enough to keep J. Scheuerle behind me as he came closer and closer.
Then I handed the car over to Seb who managed to keep Krause behind him and gave us the so long awaited win in an MoE race.
Many thanks to Rudy who showed us another great performance, to Seb who not buckled under the pressure over the last exciting hours and to Turkey for the support and motivation during the whole race.
- The last 2 hours were down to me. I knew RACE-STAR ConverTTable were gaining on us pretty quickly just before I got into the car and I also knew it would be all down to me to maintain the gap to win the race. I was aware we had a fair bit of damage so took the outlap pretty conservative. My only real mistake in the entire race was T1 on my first flying lap. I braked and turned in as I normally would have, and the front just didn't go where I pointed it. I ended up jumping across the gravel and damaging my left rear damper to about 3/4.
This servilely knocked my confidence and I struggled to find the right settings for the car throughout my first whole stint. Somehow I manage to get through the traffic better than Krause and manage to keep the gap at about 6 - 8 seconds.
I pitted at the end of my stint, knowing that I would make about 4 seconds on Krause due to the less fuel needed in the XRR. I then got my head down, with Rudy, Howie and Turkey all telling me how good laps I was doing boosted my confidence hugely and I managed to string together about 15 laps of pretty quick times considering my damage. With 3 - 5 laps to go i was pretty confident I'd be able to keep Krause behind me. My job after that was just to bring the car home. Which I did for SR's first MoE GT1 Victory!
Can't thank Rudy, Howie and turkey enough for the support and encouragement they were giving me under that immense pressure. I was trying to push through the damage as hard as I could. With plenty of arb adjustments I managed to string together some pretty quick laps when I needed them most, considering how hard the car was to control. So happy with that result
- Pace was OK but made a couple of errors costing a lot of time, end my stints in a rather disappointing 8th place. Big well done to chris and johannes for getting in the car the night before the race to start practising.
- As this was my "comeback" race after a good 2,5 month break from LFS, it felt good jumping into the car when i thought i wouldn't have a chance to drive MoE this season at all anymore.
Luckily i got home the night before the race and got asked to if i wanted a spot on the GT2 roster and went on with it without questions asked. The pre-race preparations, including stint plans, setups and general strategy was all nicely worked out so the only thing i had to do was jump in the car and drive... and try to keep 4 wheels on the tarmac, which proved to be hard first part of the 1st stint
but even with my limited amount of practice i managed to keep the car on track and even could post consistent decent times by the time i was past my caressing tyre problems and had got the car around the track a few times meanwhile taking over a few cars, and bringing us into 5th position by the end of my 1st stint and did a much more worthy 2nd stint and shrimped the gaps for the 2 remaining hours to go.
All in all a very fun race, and a big thanks to Chris Ford for stepping in to cover one spot on the roster once again
and even if the results didn't give us much reason for celebration i enjoyed myself thoroughly
good job and a big shout-out for the GT1 team bringing home the big bucks
- I was part of the broadcast team for the first three and a bit hours, and thought that it was fascinating to see the differences between Rudy's XRR and RaceStar's FZR. It was interesting to see the difference in gaps and how hard Rudy was having to push in the first split to maintain the gap.
For GT2 Jason was unlucky at the start after moving through the field, a bit of front end draft forced him off, but for the remainder he set about moving back up. Of course he then had that annoying lag related drive through for the second race in a row. Without that I think we would have been 2nd with Sirius problems.
Johannes took the car, and again had trouble with the rear of the car on exit of corners. He was quick, but after such a long lay off wasn't the junky of old, and had some Michael Schumacher rust. He should try some grass drifting to make him come back better.
My stints were fairly boring. I was annoyed with my pace, it wasn't as good as it could have been. There was a lot of damper damage to all 4 dampers during my stints, so I suspect that had something to do with it. The car just didn't feel perfect and was struggling in the second sector. I tried hard to catch up to 4th place, but with the City Liga's XRR having quicker pit stops the gap went back up again and there was very little I could do to close it. In the final few laps I just sat back and tried to help Seb in the GT1 car by getting out of the way and making the Race Star car swerve a little on the straight to pass me. I don't really think it helped that much though...
I'm delighted for my former team-mates at Sonicrealms Racing to have achieved their first Masters of Endurance victory, and if the series survives into 2010-2011, I expect them to be very very strong. However for MoE to survive, or survive at a good level, Live for Speed needs drastic improvement. It is no longer acceptable to many what is actually happening within this sim, and if it wants to survive as the force it has been in the past few years, then it needs drastic restructuring and retuning. Without this I fear the best Live for Speed competition has met its maker.