ARL - TCR Winter Series 2019/20 R11 Monza
The first round of the ARLTC Winter Series Showdown was an absolute blast around the high-speed Monza GP circuit. With the points reset, the showdown contenders got ready to launch a fresh attack on the title!
Apex Racing Team worked well together in Qualifying to lock out the front row, with Jack Sedgwick taking pole position by just 0.011s ahead of teammate Wojciech Swirydowicz. Sven Glatzel took 3rd place for VRacer with CQR Club duo Dave Baker & Christian Rose lining up 4th and 5th. Main season winner Nicol Foggie was unusually outside of the top 10, sat down in 11th place in Quali.
Jack Sedgwick held the lead off the line, and for the first 2 laps teammate Woj was able to sit tight playing rear gunner. However, Sven Glatzel wasn’t going to wait forever and moved ahead of Woj under braking for the Rettifilo chicane. The two made contact on the 2nd apex, with Sven dropping back to 5th and Woj serving a slowdown penalty.
This broke up the pack enough to allow Jack to disappear off into the horizon, with CQR’s Dave Baker and Christian Rose battling with Team MAD’s Miguel Freitas for the remaining podium positions.
Glatzel’s qualifying pace was no fluke however, and he wasn’t going to be held back for long. By lap 6 he had made his way back past Freitas, and on lap 9 lined up a move on Baker. As Glatzel moved to the outside line, Woj appeared on the inside and managed to outbrake them both. Baker was squeezed out of the middle and dropped back to 4th. Woj, having made 2 positions in one braking zone then settled in to take 2nd place with Glatzel following him home for 3rd.
The AM battle was very exciting with XVR Sim-Racing’s Rich Warmingham qualifying very well, but slowly being caught by BoosTED Motorsport‘s David Van Broeck & Xite Energy iracing Team‘s Adam McNally. Warmingham just had too much pace overall however, and breezed to the AM win in the end having just done enough to keep McNally out of reach.
Race 2 saw Nicol Foggie‘s luck briefly change. He had so far suffered a terrible night having qualified badly and then getting caught up in an incident with Alex Simpson dropping the pair to the back. A large reverse grid put him back to the sharp end of the grid for race 2, and he wasted no time breaching the pack. It took him less than a lap to get to the front of the field, and then set about extending a 10s lead to the competition by the checkered flag. Too easy!
Behind him a good scrap for the podium was taking place between Matt Bunn and Jack Ashton. Ashton made his way up from 19th on the grid to chase Bunn down, and into the final corner nosed ahead on the outside line under braking. However, Bunn was able to keep the momentum on the inside line and with some help from the draft of lapped Jamie Rusworth he was able to just squeeze ahead to take 2nd place at the finish.
Following closely behind was Lars van Rijn, who picked his battles well, driving a superb race from pole to pick up the AM victory. His nearest competitor Russell Rusty Laidler was stuck once again in a battle with his old sparring partner George Simmons, fighting over 5th place +5s behind.
Race 3 saw a dogfight between Ash Sutton and Sven Glatzel leading the pack after they both made light work of polesitter Mark Woodhouse on the run down to Turn 1. Sutton had the early lead, and kept it for the majority of the race as Glatzel elected to work together in order to maximise the gap back to Wojciech Swirydowicz in 3rd.
On the final lap Glatzel was gifted the lead after an uncharacteristic mistake from Sutton exiting the Rettifilo. Sutton caught a wheel on the gravel on the exit and allowed Glatzel to cruise past on the outside. Sutton hadn’t given up however and as the lead pair entered Ascari they were back side-by-side.
At the exit, Sutton had his nose infront, but the advantage was with Glatzel who was able to hold on the outside line through Ascari and now had the inside for the Parabolica for the last time.
Sutton tried to brake early and undercut Glatzel, but Glatzel was prepared and parked his car on the apex. This left no room for Sutton to sniff at, and he was left to watch Sven take a well earned victory for VRacer.
Behind them Woj was able to hold off Ben Palmer to bag his 2nd podium of the night, and our old friend Adam McNally this time managed to bag the AM victory by a comfortable margin back to Michael Blake and John Roberts, after his main competitor David Van Broeck was dumped into the barriers mid-way through the race.
After the scores are totted up, it looks like Apex Racing Team and Jack Sedgwick lead the PRO standings, with Paul Smith & SmileTime Simmortal leading the AM’s. Plenty still to play for however!
A nice 2 week gap now will take us over into the new year, so make sure to tune in on the 9th of January when we return!