DOM/GNL: Phoenix (belatedly…)

We’re a bit (?!) late posting this one, because for some reason the news filter missed it at the news editor’s end, so many apologies to Robert Graf and those following his progress in the DOM/GNL series of iRacing.

The series continued last week, however, at Phoenix, AZ… As usual, no plan survived contact with the opposition, but you can read Robert’s Race report by clicking “Read more” below.

Just for the record, the next race has already taken place – we’ll post the report from that one later.

This was bad. I had a gigantic headache coming home from work with just 1 minute to spare. I gulped down a big pill and strapped myself in. While the others were doing there qualify run I fiddled with last years setup. iRacing just didn’t accept it anymore, so I had to adjust it just before the race.

After the first 20 laps I was finished, headache got even worse and I wanted to park the car, get out of my cockpit and crawl to bed. But as an old nascar saying goes: “Winners never quit, quitters never win.” And so, on the second of thirteen yellows, I went down to pitlane and changed some things on the setup. The next 80 laps went by in a blur, I cant remember anything except for my eyes were feeling like popping out on springs.

On lap 100 I was feeling a bit better, but the car didn’t. So I complained about it to my mate Matthias and he got back to me saying: “You’re right behind me and I’m not going slow.” As a matter of fact I was almost in the TOP20 and just rolling around the track. Now I really woke up and started racing again. And I raced so hard, that in lap 115 out of turn 2 I caught the bump there and spun. Rear end hit the wall hard, car wasn’t running straight anymore afterwards. But the engine was ok.

Into the pits again for the inevitable bad news. And it was, 4 minutes of optional repair time, 4 whole minutes! So I just stood there, wathcing the cars and laps fly by. And then another yellow came out, repairs finished under yellow and I got back on track. The field was drawn out so much allready at that point, that I lost only 2 positions there. And the pitcrew had worked their magic. What looked like a sure wreck, was running straight and fast again.

For the last 70 laps I just kept myself out of trouble and tried to stay with the TOP10 pack, which were of course a couple of laps in front of me. After a few more yellows I finished 15th. This is my second TOP15 finish this year and I’m pretty pleased with that. However, I never want to drive a race like this again. Ever!I

I’m now 9th(!) in the overall standings. Main reason is that the big guys crashed often the last 2 races.

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