After qualifying on Tuesday with a 56.520 I knew I’d have my work cut out to have a win at this track as it seemed that everyone with a rating lower than mine, was faster – what was I doing wrong?
I decided to remain as happy as I could with my time as I knew I’d still get a decent race because of the iRating system – and how right I was – today’s race was awesome!
I got a decent start from my 4th-place starting position, even gaining a position before running off-track and having a long, lazy spin while exiting a turn on lap two and battling hard for 3rd place with the man behind. By the end of the lap I would be crossing the line in 7th-place and behind a group of closely-matched cars who were battling hard.
On lap three I managed to gain a position back and moved into 6th after the man I’d been racing with for 3rd off the start had also spun – and couldn’t get going due to the traffic going by.
I now found myself behind two of the cleanest and most annoyingly-consistent drivers I’ve ever had the absolute pleasure of racing against. They were nose to tail, battling hard, and I couldn’t wait to catch them and get in on the action.
It took two laps, but by the end of lap six I was right on the gearbox of the man in 5th-place and anxious to get past before I lost too much time to the man in 4th. By lap nine I had grabbed 5th in quite an opportunistic move after an error was made and I now truly believed that a podium wasn’t out of the question – but oh boy was I wrong – I was about to embark on one of the greatest two-car battles I’ve ever had.
I was immediately on the gearbox of the 4th-place driver and began to try to gauge where I might be fast enough to make a pass – I quickly found out that it wasn’t going to be easy! Everywhere I was faster, it wasn’t possible to pass, everywhere he was faster, I wasn’t fast enough! We were so evenly matched that I was held behind him – with a gap no larger than 0.3s between my nose and his gearbox – for the next thirteen laps!
When I eventually managed to make a pass (due to an error large enough for me to find a way by), I was hounded by him for two laps before he spun and gave me some room to breathe. I was now clear and able to run to the end of the race without any pressure.
I set my fastest lap, a 56.092, on lap twenty-four.
I had two incidents during the race:
I spun on lap two, dropping from 3rd to 7th-place.
I ran off the circuit on lap twenty-eight after a minor loss in concentration, it didn’t cost me much time.
I grew up in a household where waking up at 2am to watch races in Australia or Japan were the norm. We were huge fans of motor racing, so playing racing games seems like a natural extension of that.
My first racing game addiction was with Geoff Crammond's 'Formula 1 Grand Prix' released in 1992 on the Commodore Amiga. This game kept me going for a long time thanks to various editing tools which were available, and I continued to play it until I owned a PC. After that, I played through most of the Papyrus and Image Space Inc. titles, but have most fond memories of Grand Prix Legends.
I founded a major sim racing site that led to my employment at iRacing, Image Space Inc. and later on, Studio 397. The difficulty in working in the industry is how little time you often have to play your own games. Quite often I escape with space games instead!
Tim is British and lives in the United States with his wife and kids.
He works for software developers Image Space Inc. and Studio 397 on their racing simulations, and is a fan of Gaming, Motorsports, and photography.