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Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup Race Preview: Nurburgring

Stuttgart. The Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup prepares for the next season highlight this coming Saturday: At the fifth of ten rounds of the global esports championship run on the iRacing simulation platform on 4 July, around 40 drivers will fight for fractions of seconds and championship points on the Nordschleife of the Nürburgring. The almost 25-kilometre combination of the “Green Hell” and the 24-hour variant of the Grand Prix circuit is the longest racetrack on the current calendar of the virtual one-make race series.

At the previous round in Le Mans, British sim racer Kevin Ellis Jr. from the Apex Racing squad was first across the line in the sprint race. The 30-minute main race went to the German Redline driver Maximilian Benecke at the wheel of his digital reproduction of the latest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. The results, however, do not count towards the championship. The reason: Due to a technical error, the 15-minute sprint race was one lap too long. As a result, some competitors ran out of fuel or had to make a pitstop to refuel. Since the outcome of the sprint race determines the grid line-up for the main race, the simulation platform revoked all results. The prize money, however, will be paid out. A rerun of the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup Le Mans event will be held on 26 September.

The current championship standings after round three at Donington still apply. Last year’s champion, Joshua Rogers (VRS Coanda Simsport) from Australia, leads the series with 161 points followed by Sebastian Job from the Red Bull Racing team (155 points) and Rogers’ teammate Tommy Østgaard from Norway with 135 points.

At the Nürburgring, sim racers will contest the sprint race over two laps, followed by the main race over four laps. The event also includes a free practice, a qualifying session and a warm-up. Fans can watch the event live on the Porsche YouTube channel (https://youtu.be/itnr3a5_TJw) and Twitch (www.twitch.tv/porsche). Further information on the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup can be found on the Porsche Motorsport Hub, Porsche Newsroom and the Twitter account @PorscheRaces.

The programme (4 July)
4:03 to 4:15pm: Qualifying
4:17 to 4:32pm: Sprint race
4:34 to 4:44pm: Warm-up
4:45 to 5:15pm: Main race
(All times CEST)

Upcoming races
18.07.2020 – Silverstone Circuit (Great Britain)
01.08.2020 – Road Atlanta (USA)
15.08.2020 – Brands Hatch Circuit (Great Britain)
29.08.2020 – Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium)
26.09.2020 – Circuit de la Sarthe (France)
10.10.2020 – Autodromo Nazionale Monza (Italy)

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Brandon Kettelle Wins Inaugural eRacr Firecracker 400

Brandon Kettelle survived the madness of 160 laps at Daytona International Speedway in the finest machinery the 1987 NASCAR Cup Series had to offer, winning the inaugural eRacr Firecracker 400 presented by INFRA Resolutions in a one-lap dash to the finish. After multiple wrecks with five laps to go set up the chase to the finish, Kettelle avoided additional carnage to grab the checkered flag ahead of fellow eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series drivers John Gorlinsky and Bob Bryant.

Wednesday night’s event was the culmination of a three-week buildup to one of the biggest independently promoted events in iRacing history. 344 drivers of all license classes and professional backgrounds lined up for eight qualifying races, where real-world racing legends like Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Ed Carpenter, Bobby Labonte, and Ron Capps were all left on the outside looking in. From there, the top 88 contested two days of single-car qualifying to set lineups for both the Firecracker 400 and Monday’s Firecracker 200. The field was so tight that NASCAR Hall of Famer and two-time Daytona 500 winner Dale Earnhardt Jr. only made the 400-miler when Josh Parker withdrew from the event due to a scheduling conflict.

Big wrecks were the name of the game throughout the first portion of Wednesday’s race, as even the best of the best struggled with consistent speeds of over 210 miles per hour and low grip. Four cautions in the first 34 laps of the race pared down the field, with eNASCAR drivers Kollin Keister, Malik Ray, and Nathan Lyon—as well as Earnhardt Jr.—finding their nights cut short early. Even NASCAR Cup Series star William Byron, who led the most laps with 35, found himself out of winning contention as the field continue to pare down.

The late-race surge of incidents first threw a wrench in the strategy of drivers looking to save fuel during the longest green flag of the race, and then set up a final-lap chase for the $2,000 winner’s prize. Colton Salek and Joshua Chin were first and second coming to the green and white, but neither finished in the top 10 thanks to contact between them; after contact between all of the remaining front runners, Kettelle was able to regain his momentum the quickest to get across the finish line.

Monday’s Firecracker 200 was similarly dramatic, with a number of additional wrecks and more last-lap carnage shuffling the field. In the end, it was Jake Poulin, carrying the colors of iRacing predecessor Papyrus, who eked out the photo finish victory over Justin Botelho. Despite starting fourth, the only lap Poulin led in the race was the most important one.

Full results from Wednesday’s eRacr Firecracker 400 presented by INFRA Resolutions were as follows:

Fin.

St.

No.

Name

Manufacturer

Laps

Led

Interval

Best

1 6 14 Brandon Kettelle Ford 160 21 0.000 42.130
2 36 97 John Gorlinsky Chevrolet 160 0 -0.215 42.363
3 21 42 Bob Bryant Chevrolet 160 0 -0.278 42.548
4 8 89 AJ Henderson Chevrolet 160 0 -0.965 42.807
5 5 7 Kyle Putz Ford 160 0 -1.276 42.674
6 33 00 Will Cooley Chevrolet 160 0 -1.652 42.486
7 42 31 Justin Lisonbee Chevrolet 160 0 -1.703 42.624
8 38 75 Dylan Goodin Chevrolet 160 0 -2.225 42.806
9 25 95 Adam Gordon Chevrolet 160 0 -2.270 42.728
10 34 9 Eric J. Smith Ford 160 11 -2.416 42.505
11 11 23 Casey Kirwan Chevrolet 160 11 -6.156 42.669
12 41 93 Joshua Chin Chevrolet 160 0 -7.161 42.446
13 31 18 Alek Martinez Chevrolet 160 0 -9.480 42.603
14 40 81 Brad Slaughter Jr Chevrolet 160 0 -16.122 42.474
15 12 43 Collin Bowden Chevrolet 160 3 -16.131 42.627
16 17 99 Colton Salek Chevrolet 160 4 -17.153 42.719
17 16 5 Matt Bussa Chevrolet 160 1 -42.999 42.426
18 37 28 Alonzo Morales Chevrolet 159 0 -1 L 42.495
19 22 83 David L Brown Chevrolet 159 0 -1 L 42.608
20 18 54 Christian Pedersen Chevrolet 159 0 -1 L 42.448
21 23 49 Garrett Konrath Ford 159 0 -1 L 42.714
22 24 19 Briar LaPradd Chevrolet 158 0 -2 L 42.360
23 2 73 Jake Nichols Chevrolet 158 22 -2 L 42.369
24 7 32 Bryan Blackford Ford 158 0 -2 L 42.563
25 19 33 Michael Guest Chevrolet 156 5 -4 L 42.596
26 13 25 William Byron Jr Chevrolet 156 35 -4 L 42.682
27 15 10 Tucker Minter Chevrolet 156 1 -4 L 42.607
28 29 84 Tony Ball Chevrolet 155 0 -5 L 42.535
29 27 98 Eddie Kerner Chevrolet 155 0 -5 L 42.384
30 26 2 Jordan Herrley Chevrolet 154 0 -6 L 42.508
31 14 57 Seth DeMerchant Ford 154 11 -6 L 42.349
32 4 55 Caine Cook Ford 139 1 -21 L 42.562
33 39 96 Mitch Rollo Chevrolet 128 0 -32 L 42.503
34 10 88 Michael Conti Chevrolet 127 20 -33 L 42.473
35 1 86 Joseph Gulotta Chevrolet 127 1 -33 L 42.808
36 9 26 Kevin McAdams Chevrolet 109 0 -51 L 42.810
37 20 46 Jimmy Mullis Chevrolet 108 0 -52 L 42.409
38 32 199 Jared Ickes Chevrolet 69 5 -91 L 42.462
39 3 6 Nathan Lyon Ford 27 8 -133 L 42.793
40 35 37 Zane Scott Chevrolet 26 0 -134 L 42.525
41 43 8 Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet 25 0 -135 L 42.575
42 28 51 Malik Ray Chevrolet 20 0 -140 L 42.715
43 30 17 Kollin Keister Ford 7 0 -153 L 42.576

 

Full results from Monday’s eRacr Firecracker 200 presented by INFRA Resolutions were as follows:

 

Fin.

St.

No.

Name

Manufacturer

Laps

Led

Interval

Best

1 4 21 Jake Poulin Chevrolet 80 1 0.000 43.191
2 22 20 Justin Botelho Chevrolet 80 0 -0.013 43.043
3 15 11 Andy Hunter Chevrolet 80 0 -1.276 43.342
4 18 15 Steph Marinak Ford 80 0 -3.224 43.137
5 33 27 Kyle Trudell Ford 80 0 -3.334 42.920
6 20 3 Dylan D Thomas Chevrolet 80 0 -13.786 42.997
7 26 87 Peter Bennett3 Ford 80 4 -15.484 43.252
8 14 76 Craig Arvanites Chevrolet 80 1 -17.813 43.108
9 24 79 Barrett Polhemus Chevrolet 80 0 -18.959 43.063
10 37 270 Marshall C Gabell Ford 80 0 -19.027 43.011
11 21 41 Brian C Mullin Chevrolet 80 0 -20.604 43.477
12 8 22 Alex Kolonics Ford 80 5 -25.145 42.955
13 3 68 Mike Rasimas Ford 80 2 -28.352 43.138
14 2 3 Blake Reynolds Chevrolet 80 54 -29.151 43.072
15 28 444 Monon Rahman Chevrolet 80 0 -37.000 43.105
16 31 72 Nick Holland Ford 79 0 -1 L 43.187
17 40 13 Trevor Perry Chevrolet 79 1 -1 L 43.109
18 39 35 Brett Punkari Chevrolet 78 0 -2 L 43.222
19 9 12 Nicholas Morse Chevrolet 78 10 -2 L 43.206
20 17 65 Keith Jeffery Ford 78 0 -2 L 43.178
21 30 50 Cristian Sanford Chevrolet 77 0 -3 L 42.970
22 27 29 Will Weber Ford 77 0 -3 L 44.375
23 34 30 Colton J. Harvey Ford 77 0 -3 L 43.415
24 32 4 Kenny Kibbey Chevrolet 76 0 -4 L 42.989
25 6 166 Blake McCandless Chevrolet 75 0 -5 L 46.043
26 23 77 Devon C Henry Chevrolet 75 0 -5 L 43.252
27 38 16 Aron MacEachern Ford 75 0 -5 L 43.303
28 29 40 Cayden Rush Chevrolet 73 2 -7 L 43.099
29 35 45 Brennan Murdza Chevrolet 73 0 -7 L 42.968
30 7 939 Nathan Rabideau Chevrolet 71 0 -9 L 43.117
31 1 71 Mitchell Hunt Chevrolet 70 0 -10 L 43.201
32 41 53 Garrett Smithley Chevrolet 64 0 -16 L 43.695
33 16 8 Michael Jeanes Chevrolet 64 0 -16 L 46.091
34 19 236 Gilles Chatelain Ford 60 0 -20 L 43.232
35 11 920 Tom Abromaitis Chevrolet 44 0 -36 L 44.564
36 36 36 Shane Iliff Chevrolet 38 0 -42 L 43.192
37 13 0 Gary Sexton Chevrolet 16 0 -64 L 44.189
38 12 1 Gary Cronenwett Ford 11 0 -69 L 44.851
39 10 70 Aaron Smith II Ford 2 0 -78 L
40 5 7 Matt Everhart Ford 1 0 -79 L
41 25 90 Logan Hagerman Chevrolet 0 0 -80 L

 

Image via Justin Prince

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