And congrats to Rob for his driver championship. He deserved it and I'm glad his technical problems didn't prevent him from taking the championship.
I didn't feel good about this race throughout the week. I couldn't drive consistently or fast. I was very glad that within a half an hour of qualifying I began driving consistently. And I started to show a little speed.
This one didn't start well. GPL crashed almost immediately after I left the pits. I worried that was a bad omen, but looking at the lap times I didn't think I would lose many positions. With the full 30 minutes, I may have qualified in front of Micheal but that wasn't assured. Things got worse at the start. I got a slow start which allowed Dag to pass me. I thought I might be stuck behind him for a long time. I wasn't too concerned though. My biggest thought was finishing with an undamaged car. I was very surprised to see how quickly Dag gave P5 back to me. With the lap time that Micheal set during the week, I thought he might beat me this time. I was content to trail him but when he clipped the tires at T1, I figured I should see if I could gain anything on Roy. I might have tried hard to catch Roy for 6 laps at most. Twice I gave up any thought of getting closer. I suspect Roy drove a similar race to me, go fast enough to get a decent finish and keep the car in good shape. It would have been foolish for me to push the car much and I wasn't able to drive it hard. I set the cruise control and let the Eagle do it's work. I was surprised to finish as close to Roy as I did and as far ahead of Micheal as I was.
The 1 minor damage report I incurred is something I've never seen before. I clipped at least 2 polos during the race and hit the post in the last turn once. However, from looking at my replay when I incurred that damage report I didn't hit anything.
Thanks for letting me race with you guys. And thanks Micheal, John, and Don for letting me on the team. Otherwise, I'd have likely used a Honda as a privateer and taken a long sight seeing tour.
That was a difficult one. I needed to turn into the Colonial Loop aggressively but had I done that I'd have nailed Roy. I got in the sticky stuff off the side of the track and lost all my momentum. I thought that relegated me to the very back but I didn't see that Frank was in the weeds. Thank you Doni and Alex for letting me pass.
It was difficult in traffic. I almost went off trying to avoid Yannick and I misjudged how slow Enrique was in the final turn. My apologies. I never had any faith that I could outbrake anybody so any passes would require good momentum at crucial points on the track. The cars in front of me ensured I was losing lots of momentum at most of the crucial points. Yannick's warping was bothering me much more than a little warping usually does. I was glad I didn't have to stay behind him long.
I wish I'd have got a decent start. I'd have liked to have seen if I could stay close to Roy. I didn't think about Iestyn much this time. Once I got behind him it was quickly apparent that I had nothing for him. Being in traffic early kept me from getting my tires warm and getting in any kind of rhythm. It took me more than 15 laps to get going well and I never felt comfortable even though my car felt great when practicing on race fuel.
It looks like Iestyn is returning to form. There's been a few races I think I could have beat him if I had a Lotus too. I doubt the Lotus would have got me to his pace in this one. One stint in the Lotus makes me think I'm a second faster with it but I think I needed 1.5 seconds if I wanted a chance to stay close to Iestyn.
For a flat track, I like this one a lot. I don't care much for the section from Colonial Loop to Carlton Corner, what I'd call the 2nd loop. The rest of the track is fun for me. This track had me more concerned than any but Aintreer. I thought I could do decent but my hopes weren't too high. I did as well as I could reasonably expect and better than expected considering my early handicap.