This season in iRacing I'm participating in the new GT Challenge
. This is a multi car series including the Chevrolet Corvette C6R
and the Ford GT
. This is my story... work in progress that will be updated as the 12 week season continues.
Each race this season is 45 minutes long, I actually thought that too short, but after 4 races now... it's actually just right for my old ass. lol. The races are all open setups but since I have a minimal knowledge on setting up a race car, and I have learned, for me, a great setup is really only good for time trials and qualifications, because in races, I never can go as fast as the setup would allow me. So I use the included FIXED setups for all my races, and learn to use it.
My race week starts on Tuesday, when I bring my wheel back out of my closet and onto my PC. (I take down my wheel Sunday mornings and dedicate Sunday and Monday to my other PC games.)
Tuesdays I usually test the car and see what kind of trouble I'm going to get into. I also read others tips and information on this weeks race in the iRacing forum. I also search You Tube for the best lap videos just to get an idea on lines, gears, and brake points.
Wednesdays is when I really start my practice sessions, usually 2, sometimes 3 in the day. (I work at night so game/sim all day, lol).
Thursday morning I do another practice, and try and keep it on track, testing fuel and tire use/wear. Thursday afternoon I run a Time Trail session, more so to see if I can keep it on track under that SR stress, and also to boost up my SR (safety rating) since I may lose some in races. I then follow up with a qualification run... again more so for the SR boost. I usually qualify near the bottom... but most do not qualify at all so that usually puts me behind the 2 or 3 lead Ford GT's on the grid... who usually take off like a bat out of hell, this leaves me with only worrying about getting rear ended on the first couple turns of lap 1... the most dangerous lap in iRacing, IMO. lol.
And then Friday (and sometimes Saturday when I don't have a league race or practice... I'll run 2 races a day.
Watkins Glen International
After a number of practice sessions, I went in for a TT... fastest lap was a 1:53.189 with a -1 on my ttRating, and a +0.02 in SR.
In qualification I hit 1:52.189 with a +0.02 SR.
I participated in 2 races, In both races I started 15th, and in both races finished 5th. Went off track a couple of times, but no contact... in the second race, a Vette rear ended me in the bus stop, but no damage, just a small hit to SR. Race 1: +22 iRating, +0.06SR, Race 2: +33 iRating, -0.08SR.
Watkins Glen was pretty un-eventful... but a good week for me.
Road America was always my favorite track before I found iRacing... after the usual practice sessions. I participated in a time trial... result was 2:10.723, which I was pretty happy about because I'd been trying to break into the 2:10 time as a personal goal, and hadn't been able too. Also a +0.04 in SR. Qualification was last again with a 2:11.470, with a increase in +0.04SR.
The first race on Friday was a disaster, and once again almost had me contemplating quitting official races. The typical lap 1 mess... turn 1 was OK, but cars bunched up on turn 2, I slowed down and was rear-ended by another GT, sending me off track with damage, I tried to repair but the wheel was wobbling the rest of the race, so I called it quits before I ruined someone else's race.
I almost considered not doing Race 2, but glad I did... big mess in turn 1, lap 1, but I made it through... whole race without incident... had a great battle for position with another Ford GT... went on for laps till finally in 18, I locked up my brakes, went to wide and he took the inside... well deserved and a very clean exchange... he then took off and I was left cooling down because I was drenched in sweat by now... lap 18.
So, results... Race 1: Started 24th, finished 11th. (DQ), -29 in iRating, -0.47SR. Race 2: Started 13th, finished 5th. (must be my lucky number), +40 in iRating, +0.23 in SR.
Suzuka International Racing Course - Grand Prix
Not Racing... break for Diablo 3 (and don't know track well, lol)
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course - Full
One of my best courses, but do to birthdays and holiday, only got 1 practice in, so no race.
Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps - GP Pits
First time ever with SPA. It was ugly at first but Conny connected with me one practice and walked me through a few laps. By the end of my 4 or 5 practice sessions I went from about 2:40 a lap to 2:27 a lap.
Attempted a TT, 4 laps required, on lap 4 I got a small x1 off track penalty, was so pissed I exited in disgust.
Friday, Race number 1:
I started in the back, waited for that first lap, turn 1 incident, but to my surprise it never came. I took it easy, letting the field spread and warming up my tires, lap 2... didn't end well. 20 plus minute repair job, came back to run a few laps, finished last. -23 iRating, and a -0.11 SR... it was quick and ugly.
Race two, managed to finish the race without incident. Well there was 2, a light tap in the rear end by a Vette on lap too when I braked earlier then he did. And last lap, trying to get out of the race leaders way, a slight off track for x1. Long, good race but still lost 25 more iRating points, but gained +0.09 SR.
Race 3 on Saturday
Decided to do another race to learn more about the new (to me) track... was a good race for me, I started way in back and proceeded with caution on the first lap, which paid off because of a number of first lap incidences which I avoided... lap 2 I started day dreaming and braked too late for a turn and lost it, only incident for me the whole race, and never hit anyone or anything... Myself and another "not very good" driver had a very nice battle for 10th place for the last 2 laps, he took the lead, we crossed the line for the white flag, he lost it on turn one, I took the inside, then was holding him off... eventually the pressure got to him, (usually gets to me first, lol) and he spun giving me the top ten. Plus 32 on iRating, regaining what I lost on the last 2 races, and a increase of SR which brought me back to what I was before Spa.
Twin Ring Motegi - GP
Didn't like the track so skipped this week.
Sebring International Raceway - International
I was really set and pumped for this one, Sebring being my home track and one of my favorites, but then I found out it was a night race, did one practice session and realized I wasn't ready for a night race. So skipped this week also.
Daytona International Speedway - Road
First day practice met with positive results, no incidences in 12 laps, but my time in the Ford GT was 1:50, goal for the week is to it it to 1:45, which is highly possible since theres 2 or 3 turns I'm losing big speed on.
Guess it wasn't as possible as I thought, but over all a good week so far, 8 hours of practice, did a time trial yesterday... the full 30 mins, 14 laps without any incidences or off track violations... 14 very clean laps, first set of 5 was in the 1:50 range to get a time, but then I really pushed it near the end... best lap was the best of the week for me, 1:48.577. That was a nice +35 in iRating, and a +0.04 in SR, (which I will need for qualification.)
Qualification was OK... was hoping to hit 1;48 again but it didn't happen, a 1:49.215 is nice for me... I was really pushing it, and in doing so got a off track x1 most 4 out of my 6 qualification laps, then spun it on lap 6 and called it a day. a -0.03 took almost everything I got from yesterday TT.
2 races today, 2 tomorrow...
Friday Race 1: I'm the only one that showed so it was canceled. lol
Friday Race 2: Started 18th, finished 19th, best time was 1:50... just could never find the groove, it was like I had slicks on this whole race.
Saturday Race 1: First 12 laps were fantastic, I was doing well and hitting my marks, till on lap 12 I scraped the wall on turn 2 for a 0x penalty, but yet the wheel was screwed up... so not interfere with other drivers, I pulled it into the pits for repairs, repairs finished with 10 seconds left on the race... so started 20th, finished 17 for a +19 in iRating. (Don't the Ford GT's wheels get knocked out of aliment too easy, IMO)
Saturday Race 2: Started 10th and finished 20th... it was screwed from the get go, lap 1, turn 3 I was feeling the pressure of a vette that went off track on turn 2, then was trying to re-take me any means necessary, tires were still cold, I spun, slammed into the wall... exited in disgust.
Silverstone Circuit - Grand Prix
Phillip Island - Phillip Island Circuit
Mosport International Raceway
Road Atlanta - Full Course
May participate.... but maybe not, pretty disgusted in myself right now. Think I'm done for the season... it did not go as I planned. Maybe I will take my bosses advise and go down to a lower level car, and work back up.
Hope you enjoyed what race reports i brought you in this AAR.