2014 F2RWRS Shell Belgian Grand Prix - Race
The tone of the day had already been set several hours earlier when the second F3RWRS race ended with a red flag after an enormous accident in the pouring rain but the weather had improved to the point where, except for a few areas, the track was bone dry, mostly thanks to the F1RWRS cars in Saturday Qualifying. Marco Bizzari's car did its best to drop some more fluid on the track as the team has overfilled the oil sump on his car. So much in fact, that some of it caught fire and ate the engine within about 5 minutes.
Up front and Wouter Lamberigts had won the start from Mitchell Macklin but by the end of the Kemmel Straight, Macklin and Rosco Vantini had made his way past the Belgian. In that time, Johannes Rueckert had jumped from 7th to 5th, Catarina Lopes had made her way up to 11th and the Simpson and Rising Ashes cars were starting to get into a real punch/counter punch battle. By the time Bizzari's engine blew up on the Kemmel straight on lap 2, Jason Hamilton had saved a massive tankslapper at Eau Rouge, Alberto Cara had lost his patience with Lamberigts yet again and shoved him off the track and Johannes Rueckert's race nearly ended backwards in the Les Combes wall.
Tanner Jason meanwhile made light work of Michael Robertson a few laps later as he, his teammate Nico Bellic, the two Simpson cars and KitKat's Hansuke Shioya were stuck behind the other Gillet car of Laurent Seron. The next lap and further up the field, Marie Simon put an assertive move on Tommy Nash into the Busstop chicane but half a minute later she, like Hamilton earlier, had a massive moment in Eau Rouge. Unlike Hamilton, she wasn't able to hold it as she speared across the track and first hit the unfortunate Rueckert, forcing the German in for a new front wing and eliminating herself from the race before several moments later, Alessandro Marchesi got caught up in the mess when he went one high and one wide alongside teammate Micko Glotch, taking himself out of the race. Hamilton took advantage of the situation to overtake Terry Hawkin at the end of the Kemmel Straight.
It was also on the Kemmel Straight where on the next lap Seron's transmission decided that it could go no further. Not that many people noticed as just down the road, Hansuke Shioya flew off the track at Les Combe, spun back on and took both himself and Anton Bosevic out of the race in the resulting collision. Sani Morgan came barreling through the scene some time later and in a heart stopping moment nearly took out two marshals trying to clean up the accident site. Tommy Nash misstepped in the braking zone into the Busstop a lap later which gave teammate Hamilton the opportunity to pass his teammate.
The first pitstops came soon enough and as Macklin attempted to enter the pits, the look on Melrose's face said it all. The championship leader had found some of the oil from Bizzari's engine blowup and other fluids from the weekend's running thus far, had a meeting with the outside wall and was out of the race. Second placed Vantini did the same thing moments later except he only lost a front wing but it wasn't too big a deal as he was due in anyway. Some of the coolant from Macklin's car started flowing back down the hill which caught out Bellic which put an end to another quiet day from the Serbian. Sani Morgan then got involved by hitting the stricken Rising Ashes car at a low speed. While not fast enough to do any damage, he did end up breaking a marshal's leg and got a trip to the stewards room after the race for his troubles.
Terry Hawkin did the exact same thing as Macklin a lap later as he was trying to enter the pits before an out of control Tanner Jason followed him into the Busstop wall which ended up with a second marshal having to make the trip to the medical center. The destruction continued around the back of the track when Dave Anderson's left rear suspension let got on the exit of Pouhon, becoming the race's fifth retirment in 5 minutes. Amidst all the chaos, the two Beirao cars, both on one stoppers, found themselves in first and third with Jason Hamilton, also one stopping, in second. Vantini was down to 5th after his first stop and was looking for a way past the sole remaining Aston Martin of Micko Glotch. Heartbreakingly, Catarina Lopes' transmission failed on her before half distance. While she may not have been on track for a podium, she was heading for a hatful of points amongst all the carnage.
Vantini finally got the move done on Glotch into the Busstop later that lap and set off after the leaders like a possessed man. Michael Robertson was doing a similar job on the remaining midfield runners, putting a move on the other Falik Arrows of Sani Morgan for 6th place down the Kemmel Straight. The race quietened down somewhat as both Cara and Hamilton found the wall at the Busstop where so many others did early in the race but neither hit it hard enough to do any significant damage. Both of them came out behind Nash but Cara made light work of the Canadian within a few laps of pitting. An intermittent throttle problem then struck Nash's car which meant teammate Hamilton was also able to get by a lap later although the problem soon disappeared.
While Nash had that problem, Hamilton had his second major moment of the afternoon at Eau Rouge, spinning his Young Lions car letting Nash back past while Michael Robertson also spun at the same place in unison just seconds later. This let Glotch past the Australian for 5th place while Hamilton couldn't get past Nash until the Canadian made his second stop. With all the pitstops now out of the way, Cara was leading again from Vantini and Hamilton. The main battle on track was between the two stopping Robertson and the one stopping Morgan with Robertson making a relatively straightforward pass on the Nigerian into the Busstop.
Whatever throttle gremlin Nash's Young Lions car had, it manifested itself into a partially jammed throttle which meant that he was out of the race from 5th place. Not that many people were paying attention as up front, Vantini was catching Cara at over a second a lap and at that rate, Vantini would have got him with just over a lap to go while Hamilton was bearing down on both of them. As it was, Bastiaan van Nieuwenhuijzen was in all sorts of trouble with gaining tires and was losing over 10 seconds a lap at this point. Cara made light work of lapping him but Vantini and Hamilton both lost a heap of time trying to lap him which knocked the wind out of both their challenges. Not that it stopped Vantini from trying as by the end of the race, the time he lost from lapping van Nieuwenhuijzen was more than the gap to Cara.
As it was however, Cara had done enough to become the first person other than Macklin to win multiple F2RWRS races ahead of Vantini with Jason Hamilton scoring his first podium in third. Micko Glocth also scored his best career result in 4th while Michael Robertson was slightly disappointed with only 5th place. Sani Morgan took some more valuable points in 6th but the Nigerian is under investigation for his two incidents early in the race. Lamberigts stayed out of trouble after being punted off by Cara to score two more points in 7th while Johannes Rueckert, with new front wing and badly graining tires at the end salvaged the final point although before the graining set in he was catching Lamberigts at a vast rate of knots.
1. A. Cara (Beirao): 59m 32.176
2. R. Vantini (Falik Arrows): +5.537
3. J. Hamilton (Young Lions): +17.181
4. M. Glotch (Aston Martin): +32.343
5. M. Robertson (Simpson): +55.719
6. S. Morgan (Falik Arrows): +1:07.961#
7. W. Lamberigts (Gillet): +1:14.152
8. J. Rueckert (Hydook): +1:28.508
9. B. van Nieuwenhuijzen (KitKat): +1 LAP
DNF. T. Nash (Young Lions): Throttle
DNF. C. Lopes (Beirao): Transmission
DNF. D. Anderson (Simpson): Suspension
DNF. T. Jason (Rising Ashes): Accident
DNF. T. Hawkin (Jones Italia): Accident
DNF. N. Bellic (Rising Ashes): Accident
DNF. M. Macklin (MRT): Accident
DNF. H. Shioya (KitKat): Collision
DNF. A. Bosevic (Hydook): Collision
DNF. L. Seron (Gillet): Transmission
DNF. M. Simon (MRT): Collision
DNF. A. Marchesi (Aston Martin): Collision
DNF. M. Bizzari (Jones Italia): Engine
#Under Investigation from Stewards
Pole: M. Macklin (MRT): 1:58.890
Fastest Lap: M. Macklin (MRT): 1:59.706
Reject of the Race: Sani Morgan - The first incident was scary as it was, the second was unforgivable especially when Robertson managed to get around the stricken Rising Ashes car just seconds beforehand
Infinite Improbability Drive of the Race: Catarina Lopes - Could have, should have and would have finished 4th without the transmission failure
Leaders: M. Macklin: 1-9 (Total: 9)
A. Cara: 10-14, 21-29 (Total: 14)
J. Hamilton: 15-16 (Total: 2)
R. Vantini: 17-20 (Total: 4)
1. M. Macklin (MRT): 60 points (4 wins, 1 2nd, 1 3rd)
2. A. Cara (Beirao): 45 points (2 wins, 2 2nds, 1 3rd)
3. R. Vantini (Falik Arrows): 35 points (2 2nds, 1 3rd)
4. M. Simon (MRT): 29 points (3 2nds)
5. M. Robertson (Simpson): 24 points (1 3rd)
6. A. Marchesi (Aston Martin): 16 points (Best Result: 3 4ths)
7. T. Nash (Young Lions): 15 points (1 win)
8. M. Glotch (Aston Martin): 14 points (Best Result: 1 4th)
9. H. Shioya (KitKat): 13 points (1 win)
10. T. Hawkin (Gillet/Jones Italia): 12 points (2 3rds)
11. J. Hamilton (Young Lions): 12 points (1 3rd)
12. W. Lamberigts (Gillet): 10 points (Best Result: 1 6th)
13. T. Jason (Rising Ashes): 9 points (1 3rd)
14. S. Morgan (Falik Arrows): 9 points (Best Result: 1 4th)
15. J. Rueckert (Hydook): 9 points (Best Result: 2 5ths)
16. M. Bizzari (Trueba/Jones Italia): 6 points (Best Result: 1 5th)
17. G. Liquor (Young Lions): 4 points (Best Result: 1 5th)
18. N. Bellic (Rising Ashes): 3 points (Best Result: 1 6th)
19. A. Bosevic (Hydook): 2 points (Best Result: 1 7th)
20. D. Anderson (Simpson): 1 point (Best Result: 1 8th)
1. Virgin Melrose Racing Team: 89 points (4 wins, 4 2nds, 1 3rd)
2. Licor Beirão Portugal Racing: 45 points (2 wins, 2 2nds, 1 3rd)
3. Falik Arrows: 44 points (2 2nds, 1 3rd)
4. Holden Young Lions: 31 points (1 win, 1 3rd)
5. Aston Martin Motor Racing: 30 points (Best Result: 4 4ths)
6. Simpson Motorsports: 25 points (1 3rd)
7. Group Lotus Professional Ecurie Nationale Belge - Gillet: 22 points (2 3rds)
8. Kit-Kat Warriors: 13 points (1 win)
9. Red Bull Rising Ashes F2RWRS Team: 12 points (1 3rd)
10. Hydook Racing Team: 11 points (Best Result: 2 5ths)
11. Trueba Junior Team/Scuderia Jones Italia: 6 points (Best Result: 1 5th)
Next up is the first ever collaboration between Formula One and the F1RWRS since the breakaway with the support race for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Last edited by Wizzie
on 19 Jan 2012, 20:58, edited 1 time in total.
Martin Brundle, at the 2005 San Marino GP wrote:You can sort of imagine in four or five years time talking about these guys we've got on the front two rows of the grid today, can't you? They're very much the future of Grand Prix Racing.