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DOM-GNL #31 – Texas

With an updated build of iRacing and a new graphics card, Robert Graf takes on the simulated Texas Motor Speedway in round 31 of the iRacing DOM (German Nascar League). With only five races left in the series, we find out how this new setup seems to be suiting him.

Click “Read more” for Robert’s full report of the race.

With the new build of iRacing (which I rather like) a new graphics card and 3 weeks of waiting I was more then ready for this one. Practice again showed my primary weakness: tires. It’s just not possible for me to go fast and conserve the tires at the same time. And I had more than my equal share of wallrides out of turn2. This one really spits you out right into the wall.

Taking advice from my teammates I qualified this time, but again could’t nail it. A 12th place on the grid was my reward.

I started with a good pace and soon was running in the TOP 10, when teammate Klaus shaved the wall on the backstraight on lap 20, forcing Laurenz into evasive action. They did avoid collision, but both went spinning down the backstretch. Then they caught up with another teammate of mine, Matthias. He went sideways smoking into turn 3, where I dived deep to avoid him and missed him by inches. And still 165 laps to go.

After restart I had found my opponent for the day. Daniel Franzke would be there just tenths behind me for the rest of the race. I really drained that tank on the frist green run and went down pitroad in lap 81 with tires as low as 35%. But I had managed to stay in front of Daniel and the battle continued on the second green stint up to lap 139. Tires where much better this time , not even 50%. So I had found a way to be fast and stay cool on the rubber. Leaving pitroad I saw that orange-white Chevy of Daniel flying past. Had I made a mess of my pitstop? I was trailing be nearly 2 seconds at the line. What I didn’t know then was that Daniel had pitted a couple of laps earlier, so I had the advantage of being on newer tires.

In the next couple of laps I inched closer and closer till finally in lap 152 I was right in the tail of Daniel. And then he made that small error, clipping the apron just a bit, that opened the way for me to pass him at the front straight just before turn 1 (see picture). I then tried to get away but couldn’t shake him off. So I settled for keeping the distance and let the car roll. That worked better than I expected and the gap increased to a whole second. Keeping this one steady with throwing in a hot lap every 5 laps or so I had to really concentrate hard to not make any error. Well, I didn’t and finished my fourth TOP 5 this season.

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