We last left you at the Milwaukee Mile with four races left in our season. Those last four races tightened up our championship, yielded two first time winners, and displayed continued dominance by one of our new drivers.
Richmond was a hard fought battle by all of our drivers but overall showcased Yang Ou’s true dominance. Yang is a driver who was well known and successful in IndyCar leagues on rFactor (another Race-Sim) and has continued to show his winning ways since his move to iRacing. Yang won the race by 3 seconds and led every lap. Ryan Murray continued to show his ability on ovals is increasing with a strong second place finish. Tim Doyle, Kyle Krisiloff, and Bryan Heitkotter rounded out the Top 5.
We next headed to the land of cheese and bratwurst for 35 laps at Road America. Road America is a personal favorite of mine. It’s fast, sweeping, challenging, and long. Putting together 35 laps here is no easy feat. Bryan Heitkotter snagged the 1 point bonus by taking the pole in qualifying. I somehow managed to have my best road course start this season with a 5th place start (unfortunately I only made it 5 laps). Heitkotter stretched out a lead on the start and looked as though he was going to be the person to beat, however, on lap 11 newcomer George Sandman managed to snake by Bryan and take the lead. For the remaining 24 laps Bryan chased George but unfortunately came up just short with a second place finish. Yang Ou reeled in a 3rd place finish while Reed Rundell and David Gill rounded out the top 5.
Race 13 of 14 took us to the 1 mile oval at Phoenix, another personal favorite (can you tell I make the schedule?). Yang Ou showed his speed on the ovals once again by taking the pole position and the 1 point bonus. I started a disappointing 10th position due to a crash in qualifying but was confident in my car for the race. IndyCar regulars Will Power and Larry Foyt showed up to run with us as well. Will started in 12th place while Larry started a comfortable 6th place. Phoenix is another one of the tougher ovals for our league. Its tight corners and bumpy surface make it a real challenge to go wheel to wheel with other drivers. All four corners are so different, 1 and 2 are very tight and you have to come off the throttle on occasion to get the car through the corner. 3 and 4 are wide and can be driven completely flat-out. Needless to say, you really need to pick and choose when and where you make your moves. The race started out pretty well and we had a decently long green flag run. Mark Witz, Tim Doyle, and Scott Thrasher all managed to lead a few laps before Yang took over the lead for good. I battled understeer for most of the race which then turned into oversteer after I made a change and added more wing during a pit stop. I was able to nurse the car home a respectable 4th place.
As we have in all of our previous seasons, the championship race was held at Indianapolis. For obvious reasons this is by far my favorite track on iRacing. It puts everyone on a level playing field for the most part. Oval guys are quick as usual but the Road Course guys are also fast here as you have to be extremely precise and consistent. A total of 28 drivers showed up to take a shot at bringing home the “big win.” Relative newcomer John Paquin took the pole for the 100 lap race with Yang Ou (P2), Tim Holgate (P3), Sean Graham (P4) and Vincent Sciuto (P5) rounding out the top 5. I unfortunately made a big mistake during qualifying and white-walled the car on lap 2 of 4 and thus started a respectable but disappointing 11th. Indy is as tough as they come. Fast, sweeping, and crowded with that many cars on track. I, sadly, only made it 31 laps before my day was over. John Paquin, Yang Ou, and Tim Holgate traded the lead for most of the race leading 38, 35, and 17 laps respectively. When the checkered flag waved it was Paquin out in front with Yang Ou .056 of a second behind. Larry Foyt, Scott Manifold, and Kyle Krisiloff completed the top 5. The big mover of the race was Daniel Olszewski who started 26th and passed 18 cars to finish 8th.
The points battle over the course of the summer was closely fought between Bryan Heitkotter and Ryan Murray. In the end, Heitkotter came out on top by 46 points, securing a championship in his first season with the 16th Street Racing League. Our real life drivers, who were obviously a bit busy with the real life IZOD IndyCar Series, finished as follows: Larry Foyt (P7), Kyle Krisiloff (P16), AJ Foyt IV (P20), Billy Wease (P37), Simon Pagenaud (P38), and Will Power (P41).
This Tuesday (October 19) marks the start of the Fall 2010 season. This, by far, will be our biggest season to date. With the real life IZOD IndyCar Series in its off-season our real life drivers will have more time to participate and will be back full-time. Justin Wilson, Will Power, James Davison, Simon Pagenaud, and others should be showing up weekly to battle it out with us.
We have a full field of 43 drivers so our races are sure to be highly contested. Follow along with us here on the official IZOD IndyCar Series blog as well as on our points site.
We should have an announcement soon regarding streaming of our races so that everyone can watch but in the meantime if you’re an iRacing member feel free to spectate any of our races!