Round 4 of the Blancpain GT Series - iRacing’s premiere GT3 world championship series - at Brands Hatch was the race that opened the second part of the season in this championship. We knew from last season when we qualified for this championship that the BMW was strong in this track and once again we showed that we can win!
All of this started at the qualify with the Radicals Online Steelseries car making a fast 1:21.894, with Jeremy Bouteloup driving and making the only car to do a 21's and achieving the pole position. The other Radicals car, the Radicals Online GT car, driven by Sylvain Pommarede, did the 4th time with a 1'22.093.
If you miss the pole position lap, check it right below:
The race started really well for our cars, with Jeremy Bouteloup pulling away from the field and creating a good gap to everyone. Almost at the end of the first hour, our second car, driven by Sylvain, had a contact with Coanda Simsport and unfortunately we had damage with the second car, making it slower for the rest of the race.
Entering the last hour, and with the pit stops already done, Mack Bakkum in the first car cruised until the finish line, while Miguel Martin had to recover from P12 to P7, but when was driving behind Core Simracing car and battling for P7, he made a mistake and crashed with Core BMW car. Fortunately the car didn't took too much damage, but Core Simracing lost some places.
Look for what Jeremy Bouteloup and Sylvain said about the good race we had:
Wow, what a feeling. Winning an iRacing World Championship race is an achievement I've been wanting to realize of for a very long time and achieving it feels even better than what I expected! Coming into this race at Brands Hatch, we were confident about our pace as we did really well in the qualifier series a few months ago. However, we weren't that successful for the previous rounds this season so there was a possibility we were still missing something. We decided that I would do qualy as I felt more confident with the car with low fuel. My first lap was good but had plenty of mistakes, which made me think we wouldn't even be in the top 10. Turns out it would have been good enough for P3. My 2nd lap had an offtrack, which is why I slowed down to cool tires and make sure my 3rd lap was as fast as possible. Indeed, 3rd attempt was much better even though not perfect and put us in P1 with a reasonable margin over Coanda. I can tell you how relieved we were Mack and I when we saw the result! We knew starting from pole would help a lot as overtaking is nearly impossible here and it showed in the race. I was really cautious at the start as I didn't want to make any mistakes. This allowed Bono (Team Redline Green) to be really close. However, after some laps, I started to find my pace while Bono's pace was fading off a little bit. From that point, I knew it would be really hard for people behind to come back as I really felt in the zone and I was able to put very consistent laptimes. I also had almost no traffic which helped a lot, and no one to fight with. I gave the car to Mack after 1 hour with a small gap to 2nd position and from there, he did a perfect job to bring the car home in P1. Can't thank enough Radicals Online for the support this team gave me since I started, as well as Steelseries with great equipment! I also want to say a huge thank you to Mack my teammate, whom I've practiced a lot for this one and who did a stunning job in the race. Congratulations also to Coanda for finishing 2nd and to Inex for 3rd. It's now time to take a little bit of rest before starting to practice for Imola. Really looking forward to this one even though it won't be easy in the BMW!
Great race for us, even if we are a little bit disappointed about the result compare to the pace we had on the first stint. Qualy went good with a P4, first run was perfect too except the contact with Coanda. After that, aggressive moves paid for us on the second stint with a brilliant safe drive of this pack of car from P13 to P8 (TTLR, Pure and CORE if i remember). We could have done a last stint without changing tires, we choose the safe option but it seems that Coanda was still really fast even without changing tires. Great strategy from them as usual! Last stint from Miguel was good except the contact with CoRe, that penalize them a lot compare to us. 100% our fault on this one, again sorry guys. So P7 is good, even if i think that without the contact with Coanda and a great strategy we could have played the podium. BMW time is finished now, so i think we will try to play top10 like before now.
Missed the whole race? Check it here at RaceSpot: