Story By: Matthew Overton
Photo By: Jerry Chen
It was a quieter week of rF2 racing at CMS with only a single race due to a postponement of the NARS fixture due to RL issues and a week off at MNRL.
This left the VWSC in the spotlight and it turned out to be an exciting race at Sebring that claimed the spotlight unchallenged!
A demanding track at the best of times, it was made all the moreso with 38 drivers ( 17 Hypercar and 21 GT) taking the green at this storied venue. With the addition of rain – the first time in over a year for the VWSC, it meant a race of of attrition, mistakes and bold moves that made a crowd pleasing event to watch. Since the week had been almost completely rain-free, the garages were abuzz with action as teams adjusted setups to account for the slippery conditions and frantically reworked options for pit strategies.
Qualifying was the first opportunity to see who had a handle on the changing conditions, and it was Hypercar driver Wouter de Bruijn taking his Rookie Monsters Pagani Imola to the top of the sheet with a 1:54.826. 1:56.869 was the fastest Hypercar AM time, set by Jerry Chen in his Flying Kiwi Racing Lamborghini SCV12. The GT pace was set by George Angelidis at 2:06.548, with the GT AM driver, Jamie Zolecki not far behind at 2:07.482 in his Aston Martin Vantage.
The difficulty of the track at the best of times and then the changing conditions took their toll over the 72 minutes of day and night driving, with 9 drivers being forced to retire before race end. At the front end of the pace however, it was Wouter de Bruijn and Tom Lane piloting their Pagani Imola and Ford Mustang respectively who became the first drivers to win a 2nd race in a row in Hypercar and GT AM! This was paired with a couple of newcomers in winning circle for 2022 – Hypercar AM driver Wayne Hutchinson in a Mercedes-AMG One and GT driver Cameron Barker in his BMW M6.
Now with three rounds complete, Wouter de Bruijn moves atop the Hypercar standings being chased by a pair of Bugatti Bolides driven by Jon Uyan and Dan Kirby. Thanks to his win this weekend, Wayne Hutchinson bolts into the top of the Hypercar AM standings by a handful of points ahead of Eric Moinet and Jerry Chen in a pair of Lamborghini SCV12s. In the GT championship, the Acura NSX of George Angelidis leads the pack, with Cameron Barker and Brandon Gant chasing hard in their BMW M6 and Nissan GT-R Nismo respectively. Lastly, Matt Buice in his Lamborghini Huracan holds a 1 point lead over the charging Tom Lane, with the Porsche 911 of Peter Meier leading the rest of the pack well behind.
In the team championships, it is the Bolides of CMS Pro leading the Aston Martin Valkyries of Storm Rider Racing and the Rookie Monster Imolas in Hypercar, while the AM class is led by the Valkyries of Storm Rider Noon with the Lamborghini SCV12s of Flying Kiwi Racing and Ecurie Mistral giving chase. Over in the GT class, the Acura-equipped HPD team lead with the Mustangs of SMR Corkscrew Motorsports, McLaren 720s of SpeedyMite Racing and BMW M6s of Pedigree Racing in a tight fight for the next two podium spots. In the AM side, the Lamborghini Huracans of Trash Panda Racing are well out in front, followed at a distance by the the Corvettes of Pazuzu and then further back, the Bentley Continentals of Reptile Racing
Next week, the MNRL leads off with the Historic TransAm U2 at Road America, NARS takes on Watkins Glen Short with the SC2018X stock cars and the VWSC takes a break.