GT Worlds R3 - 5th & DNF
The iRacing GT World Championship moved onto Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola, Ferrari's home turf. However as testing showed it would prove to be an improvement to Ferrari's fortunes, but only by a little.
Qualifying would see another strong showing from Italian Simone Maria Marcenò placing the Logitech G Ferrari into 5th place on the grid, and narrowly missing 2nd place with a marginal 1x off track cancelling out his second lap. Such was the closeness of the grid, despite being within 0.3sec of Simone, Marin Čolak's qualifying lap would place the ASTRO Gaming Ferrari in 19th place on the grid, and in the dangerous mid pack.
Simone lost a place off the start to Coanda Simsport's Mitchell DeJong, however would have a fairly solid start and in a settled train of drivers early. For Marin however, he misjudged the movements of a car in front that had missed the Apex and was avoiding a slowdown, and had committed too far to his line to avoid, spinning the Croatian. He remained stranded hoping the pack would avoid him, however two cars would make heavy contact to the front and causing significant damage, costing more than a second per lap. The team would pit for repairs at the 1 hour mark and go down several laps, persist through to the final stint however retired the car when there was nothing else to gain. Another unlucky race for the squad leaving them down the order at the championship half way point.
For the Logitech G Ferrari, it became a feisty latter end to the stint, with the pack starting to lose patience behind the Williams Esports Ferrari. This would turn into a gain for Altus, with Vendaval Simracing slipping down the order, and Simone making a decisive pass just before the round of pit stops. The team knew early on that they would either undercut or overcut compared to their challengers, and this pass completely changed the strategy play and allow for the overcut, and less time on the double stinted tyres later in the race.
This would prove to be a pivotal moment, as Andrew Kahl would leave the pits to begin his double stint, and come out just ahead of the Vendaval BMW, meaning the overcut and less time on the tyres had still netted a gain. The Williams Esports Ferrari was always within our sights for the duration of the next two stints, and Andrew's metronomic driving was crucial in keeping in touch, however their pace was just that little bit too strong to catch.
With two big competitors in Red Bull Racing Esports and Pure Racing Team having new tyres for the final stint, it was a question of could we stay in front of one or both of them. Running in P4, Andrew valiantly fended of the Red Bull BMW for several laps before ultimately succumbing, but crucially not losing a lot of time to the PRT Ford running behind. Andrew managed the gap to behind brilliantly and all looked solid, before a very poor rejoin on the second last lap required some quick reactions and avoiding action, losing a crucial second with one lap to go. Thankfully, Andrew drove a solid final lap with no mistakes, and not giving an inch, taking 5th place at the chequered flag!
At the halfway point of the season, the Logitech G squad retains 6th in the Championship Standings, with the ASTRO Gaming squad sitting in 30th place.