Invictus Racing League – It’s coming home – Round six review

As we reached the half way point of the season, it would be time for Invictus to ‘come home’ as the league made its regular appearance at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Britain is one of only two countries which has hosted a Formula One Grand Prix since its inception in 1950, and whilst Brands Hatch, Aintree and Donnington have all hosted the race, it is the famous former World War airfield Silverstone which has played host to the race since 1987.

Silverstone is one of the most popular circuits on the race calendar for both drivers and viewers and offers up some high-octane entertainment across its challenging but fast track. The much emulated but never duplicated complex of Maggotts and Becketts always keep the cars on the edge of grip limitation, but with the right line and equal bravery it’ll fire you down the long Hangar Straight.

This would be round six of the Invictus Racing League F1 2018 season one, and across the six races over the week there was much to be battled for as drivers looked to go into the season break on top of their respective leagues.

 

No Assists

Speed_Queen80 had finally overcome her dry spell from the podium in an emphatic way as she took the win in Italy one week previously. The problem would be maintaining that good form as the league headed to Britain, but with Humbostone and BoyBetterKnow (Scott) on the grid for company, it was far from a foregone conclusion.

Qualifying saw a slightly overcast day in the Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire split circuit, and with the soft, medium and hard tyre compounds available for use in the session, it would be a real battle to see who could get most out of the harder compounded rubber.

The soft compound was the tyre of choice for the majority of the field, and Delange93 was the driver who utilised it to its optimum as he placed his Haas on pole position for the race. The Dutch driver set his best lap with over six minutes remaining in the session but the rest of the field were unable to beat his time with Tony-Y the closest in the Ferrari, as the manufacture engine couldn’t get the extra tenth to beat the Ferrari customer engined manufactured Haas.

Speed_Queen and Nikki9095 made it an all Force India second row, with previous race winners Scott and SJD on row three.

Malc in the Mercedes was the only driver on track to set a flying lap on the medium tyre, he would line up in eighth place but with a different strategy in mind versus the rest of the field.

The start saw everything! As the cars felt like they were left for an eternity the five red lights were finally switched off. Perhaps the delay hindered the field as it was a nightmare for pole-sitter Delange who spun the rear tyres and was slow off the line.

He was swarmed by the Force India’s into turn one but contact saw fourth placed Nikki spear off the track and luckily just out of harms way of the unforgiving armco barrier.

The chaos at the start saw an unlikely challenger for the lead in Scott who had made his way from fifth into second as his Toro Rosso and the Ferrari of Tony went side-by-side into the loop section.

Speed_Queen had also suffered a poor start after being tangled up with Nikki and by the end of the first sector was well down the order in seventh, whilst Humbostone was the man who had benefited from this all as he made a lightning start from a seventh place start into third.

The lead changed on lap two as Scott made the move on Tony into Brooklands and immediately started building a lead over the Ferrari.

Speed_Queen and Joel had been having a superb battle over the opening laps, the McLaren of Joel was doing everything to hold back SQ who was desperate to recover lost ground and she finally looked to have made the move into the loop section on lap five.

However, unaware that the McLaren was still on her outside, she collected the front right wheel of Joel’s car and her Force India as like Nikki’s on lap one was sent pointing in the wrong direction.

Renner9 had been making moves in the Mercedes and found himself in third position after opportunistic moves on Delange and Humbostone. He was aware that Scott and Tony were currently fighting over the lead and knew he would start catching them lap-by-lap if he continued his current pace.

 

Malc would see a brilliant alternate strategy work perfectly to take a shock victory

 

Malc had driven a quiet race in the Mercedes after starting to the medium compound, leading the race on lap 15 after being promoted due to strategy made his stop and came out on the yellow walled soft tyres.

He would proceed to set the track alight, the British driver would over-take Humbostone and Renner9 in consecutive laps and with six laps remaining he would become a real threat to the leaders.

Tony would be next to relinquish a position to Malc who used a mistake from the Ferrari driver to get the move down into second through Brooklands.

Although leading the race, Scott had an impending three-second time penalty due to add-on to his race time and with Malc closing in behind and unaware of his opponents penalty, the two would battle over the final two laps. The charge would not be enough to get the victory on track as the cars crossed the line fractionally apart.

The time penalty to Scott was administered and with none to Malc it meant it was a first win for the Mercedes driver and jubilation in front of the British crowd. Malc had endured a tough season and the victory was well deserved after a superb strategy call from the Brackley teams pit-wall.

Scott would pick up second with Tony-Y coming in third, Humbostone and Speed_Queen would round out the top five whilst a late collision between Renner9 and Nikki9095 would demote the second Mercedes of Renner from fourth to eighth.

A second place finish would see Scott take the lead of the championship into the season break ahead of Scopefielder, Humbostone and Speed_Queen. However, it is very much all still to play for once we re-engage in Germany.

 

Realistic Performance

 

Performance 1

The fight for supremacy with Performance 1 was in full swing with Skyzii, SirSpud and LMC_Boogster all within striking distance of each other, but with four winners from four races so far, it would only prove how unpredictable this league can be.

Qualifying saw a number of cars use the harder medium tyres to set their fastest time. AaronJSpence, Fascone and championship challenger spud would all start outside of the top ten and have prime tyre choice come the race.

The pole time was set by Haas driver Tony-Y, who fresh after his front row start and podium in the previous days race would take to the top of the standings by two tenths of a second ahead of mj_coop in the Force India.

Skyzii would also qualify on the medium and finish tenth, whilst debutantes Apiradical and The-Warislander would line up alongside each other on the fourth row.

It was a great lap from Scottish driver Tony-Y, but mj_coop would certainly have an eye on his second race victory of the season.

ColinJ had started the F3 season very well as he looked to transfer that pace across to Tuesday nights and with a fifth place in Italy in his first performance race could not be counted out come the chequered flag.

As the lights went out a great start from coop saw him up and past Tony as the cars entered the first complex of corners. Skyzii was the only driver on the mediums who made moves off the line as he used a good start to rocket past Warislander and Tejuarr before the cars reached Brooklands and Luffield, only for Tej to cheekily scythe back past after Copse corner.

Then on lap two, Disaster! On the exit of Copse, the pole-sitter Tony-Y lost control of the car as it hit the inside wall with a sickening thud, his Haas was sent flying back onto the track surface where it was collected in scary fashion by the McLaren of Apiradical.

The two would emerge unhurt from the cars in an extraordinary feat of engineering, the grid was placed under the virtual safety car, which whilst the carnage was recovered giving the grid a brief rest-bite to what had been an explosive opening duo of laps.

As the cars regained speed in the green flag period, it was the Red Bull of Tejuarr who seemed to relish the early laps as he launched down the inside of ColinJ into Stowe and move into fourth place.

Lap 12 saw the last of the soft compound starters make their pit-stop as mj_coop and Megglugpy battled out for the race lead eventually mirrored each other into the pit-lane, this allowed Skyzii and Fascone to briefly move up into first and second, whilst AaronJ ad Spud battled between themselves for then third position.

After their stops Skyzii and ColinJ found themselves battling in seventh and eighth and for two sector were side-by-side, but as they rounded the final corner the two came together and it was the unfortunate Skyzii who came off worse as his Williams spun into the wall breaking his front wing and effectively ending his challenge for the race victory.

The laps were counting down and it was Megglugpy who wrestled the race lead away from mj_coop. The two stayed firmly together on track but were joined by SJD1988, and with three laps to go the viewers were treated to a three car battle for the victory.

It wasn’t to be for the trailing cars however, as Megglugpy picked up his first victory of the season in the Renault car. Mj_coop would follow him through for second and SJD would finish a second behind in third.

A good result for Tejuarr saw him come home in fourth, whilst the drivers that ran the mediums first could not quite get the pace required to keep up and Fascone could only manage fifth.

It was a fantastic race for Megg as he moved up from sixth onto the top of the rostrum by the race end, but with another race winner once again, it keeps the title picture wide open as we enter the season break.

Spud would bemoan a poor race and only pick up three points for eighth and with Skyzii no-scoring due to the earlier incident. The field is well and truly ready to due battle once again for the final six rounds.

 

Performance 2

As in Performance 1, there was no clear leader as the league came to Britain for its latest round of the Performance 2 championship. Drivers such as Scopefielder, Delange and Jos_Heinssie had all staked a claim to be the championship favourite but no-one was taking any bets yet.

However, it was Sauber driver MrStim96 who would claim pole by almost three tenths of a second. He set a superb lap in the under-powered manufacture that would beat Delange93 and KaW_TactiicZz into second and third respectively.

Reigning champion WaveIntel has picked up solid points so far this season but was yet to stand on the top step of the podium, and he could only manage fourth in the sister Sauber. Whilst a poor session from Captain_Stiff and Sab would see them both starting at the back of the grid on row six.

Stim would get a dream release off the line and lead into Abbey, KaW would jump Delange into second but further back it was a wayward Nitrogash that would cause a problem for the rest of the field.

After joining wide at Abbey, Nitro struggled with under-steer throughout the first sector and into the loop he would slide into the direction of the pack as they streamed by, and it was the unfortunate NickLJThomson and BWAClyde who would come off worse with both suffering front aero damage and setting them both back for the remainder of the race.

Delange would eventually move back past KaW as the two became separated, Delange would spend the following laps cruising up to Stim and on lap six made the move for the lead of the race.

The two would stay in tandem throughout the pit-window, and whilst Delange would make it out ahead of traffic, Stim would shuffle into the pack behind Stiff and Nitro, making a clumsy move on Stiff into Village that would cost both drivers time as he looked to stay with Delange.

Eventually moving past the Renault and Mercedes, Stim would move back into second and the two would once again battle over the race lead as the lap counter ticked over to lap 12.

The race would neutralise over the following laps as minor moves around the grid such as NickLJ overtook Clyde for tenth, as both fought for the final point after the first lap incident with Nitrogash.

Three laps remained and Delange held a comfortable three-second advantage over Stim, while behind it was a battle for third as WaveIntel had closed up to KaW and was pressuring the Renault as they moved into the final lap.

Delange would ultimately hang on for victory at Silverstone as the Dutch driver recorded his first win of the season, MrStim would have to accept second and the fastest lap of the race.

KaW_TacticZz would hold onto third ahead of WaveIntel to round off the podium, while the biggest mover on track was the Red Bull of Sab7786, he would see a twelfth place start result in a seventh place end.

The first half of the season wraps up for Performance 2 with another different race winner and sees WaveIntel head up the title picture with Jos, Delange and Scopefielder close behind.

 

Equal Performance 

F1

The shock retirement from championship leader Sambamkid in Italy one week ago seemed to have provided the catalyst for change within the F1 league.

Having dominated the first half of the season with three wins and a second place, Sam faced his first retirement in a while for Invictus, this allowed debutante Kardanov23 to take the win and automatically insert himself into the conversation for a late season charge up the table.

As in Monza, Sam was pushed from a front row start with Kardanov taking a second consecutive pole position. He would be joined on the first row by Aleskiller150. On row two, Sam would have the fast starting Speed_Queen80 alongside him for company.

Kardanov has been unstoppable since joining the league – Is the tide turning in the chase for F1 glory?

 

Last weeks runner-up Jakeeboy98 unfortunately did not fair as well this week as he could only manage 12th in qualifying before an incident during race would see him retire early.

A scrappy race for Sam would see him drop down and eventually come home in fifth position with both Speed_Queen and mdoran09 the beneficiaries.

However, the race was once again dominated end to end by Kardanov23. The driver in his second race for Invictus F1 has taken a maximum 24 points from his two races and added two pole positions.

Speed_Queen would come home second in her best race to date this season, and mdoran07 would finally be back on the podium after a rough start to the season.

Sam would still come away leading the title but after six points over two races, his perch at the top of the standings seemed to be for the first time this season looking like it could be under threat if Kardanov could keep up this pace.

The two would meet again in Germany in two weeks, this would give Sam the chance to go one on one with his new rival for the F1 title.

 

F2

The majority of the field is certainly starting to play catch up with Betrayer46 as we enter the mid-point of the season, only Humbostone has been able to keep tabs with the Red Bull driver. The two entered round six of the F2 season separated by one point and with a good chance of extending their advantage over their nearest rivals.

Betrayer was without a win since the opening race of the season in Australia, whilst it was RickWR88 who had taken the last two race victories in France and Italy, and the Canadian racer looked to continue his good form coming into Silverstone.

Pole would be sought after in what is a very competitive field, although the league see’s two drivers in the lead of the standings, we have been treated to four winners in five races. The grid would peel out on circuit knowing that they were in for a real fight to be the first one into Abbey on lap one.

It was young Scottish driver WaveIntel who would claim pole for the race after a strong performance in qualifying. He edged out RickWR, who once again showed great pace in his third week back into competitive action.

WaveIntel would then go on to take the race win, after a hard fought battle with Betrayer46 and Humbostone who came in second and third respectively. He managed to keep the Red Bull behind, as last seasons enthralling battle between WaveIntel and Betrayer seemed to re-engage once again.

The podium finishers would enter the season break on a high knowing that they were starting to break away from the rest of the field. WaveIntel has taken 22 from a possible 24 points over the last two races and it has inserted him back into the title picture as we look forward to round seven.

Betrayer maintains the lead in the F2 standings, he will be delighted with his performance over the first six rounds, but it is not time to get lackadaisical if he wants to make it two successive driver’s crowns in equal performance.

The pressure is now on to continue what is going to be a fascinating season.

 

F3

The F3 championship has really started to heat up as we reach the mid-point of the season, and with a number of cars on the grid capable of taking the victory, the race for pole and the win would be a must-watch.

Craig led the championship, but with minimal points back the rest of the field, he would be hard pushed to make it a third consecutive win.

Qualifying began at Silverstone, but with the threat of rain in the air as the session climaxed, it would be about getting laps in early for the best track conditions that would influence the final standings.

Pole would be set with around one minute remaining! Alga in the Haas sat at the top of the board, but a late decision not to set a further lap time meant his team-mate ColinJ was able to use a brilliant lap to drop his counter-part off of provisional pole as the two American owned cars would lock out the front row of the British Grand Prix.

Points leader Craig would only manage a third place finish in the Ferrari, whilst he was joined on row two by fast-starting JamieMet92.

There was late controversy in the Toro Rosso garage as Fascone found himself in what looked like very harsh trouble with the stewards after the Irishman was run into in the pit-lane entry by the Sauber of Bren_Ons. The stewards deemed it the fault of the Toro Rosso for driving excessively slowly, and he would be given a five place grid-penalty that would demote him from eighth to thirteenth.

As Tejuarr made up the final place on the grid, the lights would work up to five and extinguish sending thousands of turbo-hybrid horsepower down towards Abbey for the first time.

Alga made the jump on Colin into turn one but the cameras attention was caught by the Mercedes of Notorious sliding spectacularly wide after contact, the Irish driver was incensed under the helmet after his best qualifying result was nullified to being at the bottom of the order and by the end of the first lap almost 30 seconds off the lead.

As the race progressed, the undercut would work wonders for ColinJ as he utilised his fresh rubber to move back past team-mate Alga and back into the lead of the race. Alga would also find himself behind JamieMet who was once again impressing in F3, the Red Bull sat under three seconds from the race leader and meant that Colin would not be able to have a moment to think as he looked at taking his first race win of the season.

The race would enter its final stages and it seemed as ColinJ would have enough to hold off the charging Red Bull behind but with five laps left to go there was always a chance for Jamie to capitalise on a mistake.

Down the order and Craig was holding on in fourth position, with Force India of Booje in a solid fifth but with an eye on the Ferrari ahead.

The race reached its crescendo with Colin maintaining the lead of the race ahead of Jamie. However, with only two laps remaining, the battle for the lead was between both Haas cars and the Red Bull split by less than a second!

Jamie would make a move for the lead of the race into Stowe on lap 24 and immediately use his two lap fresher tyres to stretch a gap over the two Haas cars. Alga wet on to pass Colin but a final lap distaster for the Italian driver saw him lose control at Abbey and it the wall, ending his race with less than one tour of the famous circuit left.

Jamie would cross the line to win the F3 British Grand Prix ahead of ColinJ and a delighted Booje89, the Force India passed Craig in the dying laps and with Alga’s retirement saw himself take an unlikely podium.

Craig would drop down behind F1Richard, who once again had a superb race but drivers such as SirSpud and Captain_Stiff would rue poor race as they only came home in ninth and eleventh respectively.

 

JamieMet92 would take a superb victory after a late overtake on race-leading ColinJ, The Milton Keynes manufacture were delighted with his pace all session long and celebrations went on long into the night.

 

Jamie once again picked up some great points and adds another 12 points to his growing tally. having only joined the league in round three he has already put himself well into the campionship challenge for the second half of the season.

It looks like Craig, Colin and Jamie could all be in a good position for the next six races, but will we see a resurgence from Spud, Tej or even F1Richard who seems to be picking up steam.

F3 goes into the season break with the title picture wide open!

 

Invictus Racing League – Magnificient Monza delights Invictus fans – Round five review

The Italian Grand Prix has been a staple on the Formula One calendar since its conception in 1950, and in that time has become on of the most famous circuits on the planet.

The famous Tifosi are the passionate Ferrari supporting fans that offer some of the most incredible noise when the historic scarlet prancing horse cars take to the track.

Monza has always offered up a plethora of wheel to wheel racing in previous seasons, and with the prospect of six more electrifying races around the Italian circuit this week, the odds were looking good for another great week of racing.

The cars hit a top speed of around 227mph on the way down to the Rettifilio chicane at turn one and two. This, along with DRS assistance means we were in store to see some superb battles down the famous straightaway. The circuit promotes over-taking throughout the lap, and with the cars at full throttle for 75% of the lap the drivers would have to make sure they were on the limit of car control to get every split-second of time out of the track.

 

No-assist

Humbostone, Scopefielder and BoybetterknowSB (Scott) were all fighting it out over the overall points lead in the no-assist championship, but with Humbostone unable to get the car on circuit at Monza, it would appear we would have a new championship leader by the end of the week.

The cars rolled out on circuit with the least amount of down-force possible, the grid knew that the power advantaged cars would be mightily hard to beat today so the Mercedes, Ferrari and Force India manufactures would all be looking at positive results come the end of the session.

The early pace was set with Tony-Y in the Ferrari delighting the home fans with provisional pole whilst the Toro Rosso of BoyBetterKnow was looking very handy in second place as he looked at making the most of Humbostone’s absence,

Malc had made a good start to qualifying, and utilising his Mercedes engine had dragged himself into contention as he sat in third half way through the session, whilst Scopefielder and last weeks winner SJD not far behind.

With time for one final run remaining, the cars streamed out on circuit as time counted down, the advantage of being last on track would be huge as track evolution had seen the surface become faster and faster throughout the session, after the clouds parted and the sun started to warm the Italian circuit.

It was the Mercedes of Malc who would ruin the Tifosi’ day by beating Tony-Y to pole position, as the Ferrari could only manage second. SJD and Scott would round out row two, and with Scopefielder and Speed_Queen on row three it was certain that we would see some fiery racing in the session ahead.

As the lights went green and sent thousands of horsepower down towards turn one Malc led the grid away, however, this was until they approached turn one when SJD locked up and ran into the back of the Mercedes as he pushed the pole sitter offline costing him several positions, SJD took to the escape road and took a huge hit to his race before the first corner.

This freed up Scott and Speed_Queen who had made use of the incident at turn one to move into second and the two went side by side down Curve Grande and proceeded to have a superb opening lap exchange with one another.

The battle for the midfield positions was intense and with almost a four car battle across the first laps, it was anyone guess to who would come out ahead by the end of the first stint.

The first major talking point of the race came on lap three as Malc who was slowly recovering after his unfortunate start was blindsided by the spinning Renault of Mamafisher. The Renault lost control on the exit of Ascari whilst battling with Joel and as he speared back across the track he collected the Mercedes and the two ended up in the wall. Tony-Y who had also lost out at the start and found himself down the order was inches away from joining the Mercedes in the wall.

 

Malc had a fantastic qualifying result to be on pole, but an incident early on would end the race for him.

 

Mamafisher was able to recover, but it was a race ending incident for the pole sitter and a disappointing end to what was looking promising race for the English driver.

The battle at the front was raging on and with Speed_Queen finally getting the move down on Scott along the pit-straight of lap six the two would continue going wheel to wheel for the next couple of laps.

Lap eight saw Ascari claim its second victim as Renner9 in the other Mercedes hit the wall on exit of the corner, this meant both Mercedes would be out of the Grand Prix and Toto Wolff would have a lot to digest from his teams poor race. Renner was despondent in the paddock interviews after the race, he dropped from what was a strong fourth position and once again saw himself crashing out of a good points position.

The pit-window opened for the leaders, and both took the opportunity to stop for the medium tyre on lap 11. This promoted Scopefielder into the lead of the race whilst still out on his initial supersoft compound.

Scope made his stop and went for a much more aggressive strategy pitting onto the soft compound, this allowed him to start crawling up to the back of Scott, who had dropped off from the rear end of Speed_Queen.

Lap 13 saw the end for two drivers in quick succession as both Jos and SJD had their races ended early. Jos after struggling with suspension failure due to a ride over the curbs a lap earlier saw him lose control twice at Della Roggia, the team were forced to retire his car and end a disappointing race for the Dutchman.

SJD was victim number three of Ascari, he had only just left the pit-lane on fresh tyres and last weeks race winner was visibly furious at himself after throwing away good points.

Ascari once again claimed its next victim, and again Mamafisher lost control of his Renault and the car had no-where else to go but the wall and his race ended ten laps earlier than planned.

Over the final ten laps the battle was on for second as Scott and Scopefielder traded places lap upon lap. The two had a fantastic fight with the Toro Rosso of Scott finally getting the move done on Scope and kept the Swedish driver behind for the remainder of the race.

Their battle ensued that Speed_Queen would take her first race win of the season and by a comfortable margin. She drove a superb race in the Force India and took a deserved win. Scott and Scope rounded out the podium as the three would celebrate valuable points to their championship tally.

 

Performance 1

After his victory last week, LMC_Boogster was looking for another promising result in the performance league. He would be under threat from others like SirSpud and AaronJSpence who would be in with a great chance at picking up their first wins of the season.

The prospect of a rain affected race was on the horizon, but with a dry qualifying in store. It would be all out for everyone to get themselves as high up the grid as possible before the race.

The aforementioned SirSpud did use the straight-line speed of the Force India to take pole position ahead of Mike in the Ferrari, the home fans would celebrate a front row start for their favoured manufacture and hope it would translate to a podium or even a race victory.

As expected, it was a wet and miserable start to the race session. The weather played its part in the start as the cars struggled to slow down for the first chicane. Spud had led the grid away but it was Mike to had the inside line into turn one. The two briefly touched wheels and this caused both to bounce across the kerbs on the chicane.

Skyzii would make the most of the front row clashing as the Toro Rosso driver moved up into the lead of the race. Whilst behind the battle raged between Spud, Coop and Megglugpy over the final podium position.

The rain-clouds parted and the sun started to break up the weather in what was a huge relief for the grid. The track was becoming dryer and dryer with each lap and SJD was the first to make the jump on lap 13 onto the dry tyres.

It was only a lap later when everyone poured into the pit-lane and equally joined SJD on the soft compound but the Renault had made a perfect call on strategy and moved up three positions and found himself in the top six.

It was a disappointing race for Tony-Y who after a mistake strewn session was forced to retire on lap 16 when the Renault team called him into the pit-lane with an underlying issue, it appeared the team were looking at saving the engine as a precaution so it would last before the season break after next weeks race in Britain.

In devastating news for championship hopeful mj_coop, a crash at the exit of Ascari ended the race for the French Grand Prix winner and made it successive retirements in the performance league.

SirSpud had made his way past Mike early in the second stint and had hauled down the leader of Skyzii, he had led the race from the start and looked to be walking away with it. Ultimately his lead would be whittled down lap on lap and it was on lap 25 that Spud would make his move.

The Force India driver passed the race leader down the back straight into the Parabolica and went on to win is first race of the Performance 1 season.

Skyzii looked dejected after missing out on the victory in the final laps but came home in second, whilst Mike managed to hold onto third and give the Tifosi something to cheer as a Ferrari would appear on the podium.

It was a superb race for Spud who overcame the collision on lap one to come back and take the victory in the dying laps. He was delighted with his recovery after the two different weather periods made racing very tricky but takes 12 valuable points away from Monza.

 

Performance 2

WaveIntel led the way after the first two rounds of Performance 2, the Scottish driver had amassed consecutive podiums and would be clambering to take home a first victory for the season.

The likes of Scopefielder, Jos and BWAClyde were on his toes behind but with a strong grid expected for the race, it would be a battle of straight line power that would ultimately be the decisive factor.

Qualifying saw Toro Rosso driver Scopefielder take pole position ahead of Jos_Heinssie, who had driven a superb lap to get his Williams on the front row of the grid.

WaveIntel would start in seventh, whilst Sab7786 would be the only driver to try a lap on the soft compound of tyre and would line up at the rear of the grid, along with Clyde and Nitro who would all have tyre choice going into the race.

A poor start from Scope and Jos was countered by KaW TacTicZz who left his grid position like a rocket, his Renault moved up into first by the Rettifilio. MrStim was equally making gains and the McLaren challenged for second as they exited the first chicane before losing the position back to Jos into Della Roggia, as the Williams looked to regain lost ground.

The first laps saw KaW stretch his lead to over three seconds, but the battle for second was heating up lap upon lap.  Jos, Scope, Stim and a charging NickLJThomson all started vying for a podium and it was on the exit of the Parabolica on lap four that all cars were split by a fraction of a second. The group almost ran four wide down the straight, however it was Nick who made the move up into second as they entered turn one.

They continued swapping positions over the following laps with Delange93 in the Haas joining the now 5 cars battle for second place.

Disaster struck the race leader on lap six! The Renault driver lost the rear end of the car on the exit of Ascari and had a short trip to the barrier and even quicker end to a race that looked like was well in reach. KaW was visibly furious with himself as he threw the steering wheel out of the cockpit and kept his helmet on as he made his way back to the paddock.

This promoted Scope back into the lead of the race, he had passed Nick earlier that lap and after his early pace in the Sauber, Nick was becoming under increasing pressure from Delange, Stim and WaveIntel.

As the leaders pitted it briefly promoted Clyde and Sab into the front of the procession but it was short-lived as they both made their stops by lap 17.

The fight for position wasn’t confined to just the lead, NeverMiss and Tom_444 both pushed each other extensively over the 19th lap with NeverMiss havign made a wonderful pass around the inside into Della Roggia a lap previous.

Five laps were left remaining and Scope was still leading the race ahead of MrStim in second and NickLJ in third. The lead couple were nose to tail on lap 22 and it finally paid off for Stim who made the move on Scope into Ascari and assumed the lead.

Stim would start to bridge a gap between the two drivers as the race started to reach its conclusion. The real battle on circuit was still raging between NeverMiss and Tom over eighth place as the two had a stunning battle in the final laps with nothing between the Williams of NeverMiss and Renault of Tom.

The chequered flag dropped and ended a thrilling race in Performance 2 and first win of the season for MrStim, he was followed home by Scopefielder and WaveIntel. WaveIntel made use of a late penalty to Nick to move up into third and take another podium in his fight to go for another Performance league title.

In the battle of Tom and NeverMiss, it was Tom who made the move on NeverMiss into Ascari and kept it across the line as the two ended a superb battle in eighth and ninth respectively.

WaveIntel maintains his lead at the top, but with Scope keeping up with last seasons Performance champion and others well within striking distance, it is going to be a long and challenging season if he is to retain his crown.

 

Equal Performance 

F1

 

After a dominant start to the season for SamBamKid saw him on 46 out of a possible 48 points, it seemed like more of the same would be on the cards for the prolific winner within Invictus.

The league had seen some new faces join from Monza, with Kardanov23, Bruno Alves FC and Jakeeeboy all making their debuts in F1. The added competition can only benefit the grid as they attempt to stop Sam from running away with this seasons F1 title.

Qualifying saw the desired effect for the new drivers in the field as Kardanov and Jake locked Sam off of the front row as the championship leader could only manage third place alongside Bruno.

Last seasons No-assist champion Gamer_da_best262 was also back after missing parts of the early season. He would be a non starter in qualifying meaning a 13th place start would see him have to fight his way to the front.

It would be a perfect start to the league for Kardanov who would go on to take a flag to flag victory in the Williams, he was followed home by debutante Jake who was happy to come home on the podium for his first race.

However, it was a different story for Sam who suffered a retirement after his pit-stop, the non finish would certainly give others hope that he is catch-able if they can string together some good results. His non finish helped Scopefielder into a podium position after the Swede started in eighth ending a very strong race and a second consecutive podium.

Sam maintained his lead in the standings but with the three letters next to his race result of DNF he would certainly have to look at bouncing back next week in Britain.

F2

The F2 league always provides so excellent racing, and with Betrayer46 currently leading the way on 37 points ahead of Humbostone on 32 as we came to the home of Ferrari in Monza there was fireworks in store for the race.

RickWR88 has re-entered the league earlier this season and has been getting stronger and stronger each week. This was confirmed as he took pole position ahead of WaveIntel, it meant the Canadian driver would have a free track on the run down to turn one, but with the always fast starting WaveIntel next to him, both would have to be cautious heading into the Rettifilio.

GP1 Alex and MrStim made up the second row whilst Betrayer could only put his Red Bull in sixth with team-mate mj_coop in ninth as the two would look for a much more positive result in Monza compared to last season where both drivers struggled.

It was a dream race for Rick, who converted his pole into the race victory. He took a popular victory in the paddock and he was greeted onto the top step of the podium with cheers from the Italian fans.

 

RickWR88 on his way to victory for the jubilant Racing Point Force India team

 

WaveIntel added ten valuable points to his season tally after two devastating retirements previously and Humbostone kept up the pressure on Betrayer coming from seventh on the grid to third at the chequered flag.

Championship leader Betrayer suffered his worst result of the season so far and dropped from sixth at the start to seventh due to Humbostones progression through the field.

After an excellent start to the season, are the cracks showing in Betrayers title challenge? Humbostone is hot on the heels of the experienced driver and the two look to be the odds on favourites for the title come the final race in Brazil.

F3

After his debut victory in France last week, Craig8728 was full of confidence as we headed to his team’s home circuit. The Tifosi were brimming with excitement as they expected a strong result from both Ferrari drivers.

Championship leader Bren_Ons had opened his season account with four great results, but as he transitioned to lower driver assists for this round, the Sauber driver wasn’t confident that he would be able to continue as pace setter for the F3 league.

Unlike many of the other leagues seeing most drivers opt for the softest super-soft tyre to qualify on, a number of drivers attempted to set their fastest lap on the middle compound, this would potentially give them the edge come the race by allowing them to run slightly longer than the red striped super-softs.

Qualifying saw a superb late lap from Fascone beat Craig to pole by less than five hundredths of a second. Fascone already had a race victory to his name this season in Hungary, and with a podium in Australia it ensured he would be one to watch out for.

SirSpud once again set a stunning lap time on the yellow soft compound tyre to finish third ahead of the softer compound users Dan and Alga, amongst others.

Tejuarr didn’t have the session that team-mate Craig was having and with traffic on circuit, combined with a lack of pace saw the Ferrari driver sit 12th on the grid, however, Tejuarr is known for his fast starts and the crowd would all be waiting to see his progress into turn one.

A superb start off the line saw Fascone and Craig both maintain the top two positions, but it was Spud who struggled to get the power down in his Mercedes which bogged down off the line allowing Alga and F1Richard67 past.

Richard had made a scintillating getaway in the McLaren as moving up from sixth into fourth ahead of team-mate Dan as the two looked at Alga’s Haas ahead.

Dan headed up an almightly battle across the first two laps, as he along with the Mercedes of Spud and the Red Bulls of JamieMet and Clyde, with the four of them almost going four wide into the Parabolica. Their battle introduced Captain_Stiff into the fray as the Renault driver made use of a good start to move from eleventh into eighth and eyeing up a fight with the cars ahead.

It had been a disaster start for xMIKExSI who lost all traction at the start of the race and lost control into the path of Notorious as the two would be forced to make early stops and almost rule them out of the running for points before they had even crossed the start line.

Lap three saw the lap change as Craig made the move past Fascone for the lead of the race into turn one, he then preceeded to start building a lead over the Irishman as Fascone started to struggle on the tyres. In a cruel turn for the pole-sitter, he would exit the race prematurely after an accident at Ascari combined with a slow stop indicated that there was more to the issue than damage, it was a real shame for Fascone who had been running well in second at the time.

The battle for the midfield was extraordinary, Spud had moved away into a clear third but left the two McLarens, two Red Bulls, Captain_Stiff and ColinJ all vying over fourth place.

The two McLarens had swapped positions several times over the first five laps and equally the Red Bulls kept Christian Horners heart-rate up as they traded places.

The battling kept the Renault of Stiff well in range of an attack on the harder tyres and that is what happened on lap eight. After Jamie ran wide out of Ascari Stiff made the move past him and then made the move on the second Red Bull into Curva Grande on lap ten. This promoted him into fourth, with both Red Bull’s and McLarens making their stops for the medium tyres.

Lap 16 saw the whole grid having finally stopped with all running either the medium or soft compound, that was apart from the Renault drivers, they had stretched out their initial stint and both put on the fastest super-soft tyres. This would give them both a huge time disparity on lap-time and it was Stiff who would make the most of it as he quickly closed up the gap between himself and Richard for fifth.

 

 

 

Craig sent the Tifosi into wild celebrations as the Scotsman came home for the win at the Maranello teams home race.

 

The battle for second had seen Spud, Alga and Dan all fighting down the main straight as the cars entered lap 19 with the Mercedes of Spud finally moving into second. He would slightly build a lead as the cars headed onto lap 21.

However, the race was about to take a very dramatic turn.

Alga and Dan fought over third and fourth down the main straight with the McLaren of Dan gaining the advantage. Alga would attempt to tuck back into the rear end of him as they entered the Rettifilio but would miss his braking point wildly, the two came together and speared across the chicane into the path of the innocent Spud.

The cars all hit the wall on the exit of turn two and suffered significant damage. It would end Spuds race in agonising fashion and he was as expected incandescent with anger. He has suffered terrible luck in the first few races and had a great opportunity at catching the race leader today.

Alga and Dan would both recover with minimal damage, whilst Richard and Stiff would benefit immensely from the incident and both move up into podium positions.

Dan would drop from fourth to sixth quickly with ColinJ making an audacious move around the inside to outside of turn one and two past both the Mclaren and Red Bull of JamieMet.

As the race reached its climax, the final podium positions were yet to be decided and with four laps remaining and on much faster tyres, Captain_Stiff made the move past Richard for second.

Craig would end up taking a comfortable victory and a consecutive top step celebration that would catapult him into the title conversation. His lead was cut by four seconds in the final laps but Stiff would come home for a jubilant first podium in Invictus as the Renault team cheered on their driver across the line.

It was a dramatic finish for third as ColinJ moved up to third by three hundredths of a second ahead of Richard after a penalty was administered. It was heartbreak for Richard but a superb final ten laps for Colin.

It was an explosive race in F3 this week which was rightly highlighted, the battle for superiority swings once again towards Ferrari with Craig8728 taking maximum points over the previous two races.

JamieMet is slowly creeping up the table, whilst Captain_Stiff will certainly have an eye on a top three finish if he can keep up the good run of form.

 

 

It was another fantastic week in the Invictus Racing League at Monza, we were treated to some breathtaking action across the three days racing.

Next up is the Grand Prix of Great Britain at the famous Silverstone circuit, the track offers one of the most famous corner complexes in world racing and always promotes close racing.

Check out the twitter @InvictusRL for all league and race announcements!

Editors note – I apologise for the lack of the race reviews over the December period. Technical and workload issues, combined with the festive period made it hard to watch through and write out in time. Hopefully 2019 will see these make a regular return!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Invictus Racing League – Invictus says bonjour to France – Round four review.

For the first time in Invictus Racing League history a race from France would be on the calendar. The Paul Ricard circuit has previously been used for junior formula and tyre testing by Formula One, but after leaving Magny-Cours in 2008 it has been a decade since a French grand prix has been run.

The circuit offers up fast and technical corners, and with the famous Signes corner at turn ten a mouth-watering opportunity for some wheel to wheel action across the vibrant and colourful track layout.

The circuit is littered with colourful run off areas, and is punishing when attacking track limits ensuring drivers would have to be on their best behaviour to stay out of trouble with the track stewards.

The no-assist championships as usual were first up on Monday evening and they would be the trailblazers around the new track layout.

 

No Assist

It was a cold and misty start to qualifying as the cars poured out onto the track surface, and with the threat of rain in the air it certainly added incentive to get a lap time on the board early.

Humbostone, Scopefielder and BoyBetterKnowSB were all vying for the top of the standings heading into round four but with BoyBetterKnow an absentee from this week’s event it gave a real opportunity for the rest of the field to throw their proverbial hat into the ring for a championship challenge.

Pirelli had brought the ultrasoft, supersoft and soft tyre compound to the track, and with a weather report offering changeable conditions for the race it left the drivers and their race engineers in discussion about what tyre they would prefer to start on, knowing that a move to wet tyres was inevitable.

Qualifying was dominated by the Force India of Joel, who left the field six tenths of a second away. He populated the front row with ChielNijland who recorded his best qualifying effort of the season in the McLaren, whilst SJD1988 and Nikki9095 made up row two.

Scopefielder and Humbostone could only manage eighth and tenth respectively so it would be a tall ask for them to move back up the order come race time.

The rain was already starting to threaten as the formation lap started, and with race engineers furiously calculating alternate strategies for their drivers, the potential for an upset was well and truly on the cards.

It was a perfect release off of the line for Joel as the Force India raced down towards turn one with a comfortable lead over ChielNijland who equally maintained his second position as the two rounded the first lap.

The pack spent the early laps trying to make the most of the grip but with rain falling and track temperatures plummeting the need for intermediate tyres was definitely on the horizon, after his good start it seemed that Chiel would be the first to start feeling the effects of the greasy track surface as his McLaren ran wide on the entry to turn five allowing Nikki9095 and SJD to move past and demote the Dutchman from second into fourth.

Nikki was enjoying the changeable conditions on track and within a lap hauled in Joel and passed the leader before the sweeping turn ten. The rain started to fall heavier and was really affecting the grip levels, with Nikki and Joel both driving for Force India it was Joel who was called into the pit-lane first as the now leader of Nikki9095 along with SJD and Speed_Queen among others stayed out for another lap in what looked like very difficult conditions.

The extra lap destroyed any advantage that Nikki had built on Joel for the lead and not only did he come out of the pit-lane almost eight seconds down; he was also jumped in the pit-lane by the Red Bull of SJD who moved up into second.

Lap seven saw the premature end for last weeks winner Jos who ended up in the wall and with terminal damage and it seemed to open the floodgates as Mike and Phil_mcfc both then suffered retirements as we went down to 11 runners.

The rain came down heavier and heavier with each minute of the race, whilst there was chaos behind with Delange and Humbostone tripping over each other on the entry to the pit-lane, the time was right for the extreme wet tyres.

In contrast to the first stop where he got his strategy call spot on, Force India driver Joel spent one lap extra on the intermediate tyres compared to SJD on the wet tyres, he was made to pay as he skated around the final sector allowing SJD to cruise past down the main straight as Joel pitted.

The man who was struggling the most was ChielNijland who had dropped well back in the wet and found himself battling with Delange and Malc for 8-10th places.

As the race crossed into two-thirds distance with the rain not looking on slowing down, the leader SJD was stretching out his advantage to around six seconds whilst Speed_Queen and Scopefielder were both starting to make up ground on the grid as both circulated in fourth and fifth respectively.

Team boss Christian Horner was ecstatic as his car driven by SJD took a brilliant first win of the season, he made perfect decisions in regards to strategy all race long and using excellent pace in the treacherous conditions took a storming win.

He was followed home by the two Force India cars of Joel and Nikki who will rue bad pit-stops that potentially cost them a race victory.

It was a poor result for Humbostone who could only manage ninth place and with Scott missing the race due to a scheduling conflict it meant that Scopefielder would insert himself well into the battle for a title challenge as he moved onto 27 points and one behind leader Humbostone.

Next week would be much different with a trip to Monza giving the drivers a plethora of passing opportunities and ensuring that we were in store for another fantastic race.

 

Performance League 

Performance 1

Mj_coop led the way at the top of the standings heading to Paul Ricard and with the British driver full of confidence after his race victory in Hungary in the previous race, it would take a strong performance from the rest of the field to deny coop another positive result.

Coop was running in the Renault Sport team for the debut in France and the home crowd were delighted to see him put the french manufacture on pole position. He marginally edged out Spud in the Red Bull who took second ahead of LMC_Boogster and Megglugpy, who was disappointed to only be on the second row of the grid.

Only nine drivers took to the circuit for the race so the battle for a top three position would be much more achievable for the rest of the field. However, the overnight rain had become a deluge. The track surface was covered in puddles and huge areas where aqua-planing could become a real issue. The conditions certainly shook up the field as it would certainly become a test of confidence and patience on the unpredictable surface.

It was a disaster start for the pole sitter, coop’s Renault bogged down off the line as it struggled to gain any traction on the drenched surface. He was already in fourth position by turn one as Boogster and Spud had made the best getaways leading the pack away with Skyzii moving well up into third.

A mistake from Spud saw him drop back behind Skyzii and the two McLarens were already starting to stretch a gap over the field in the first two laps.

By lap three, a quick shift in weather saw the rain stop, and almost immediately a dryer line started to appear on the track allowing cars to start to come off the extreme wet tyre and onto the more adaptable intermediate tyre.

The race evened out as the drivers became more confident in the ever-changing conditions, the two McLaren drivers circulated in first and second with Boogster in a comfortable lead ahead of Skyzii. Megglugpy had moved up into third position by the half way point whilst mj_coop had endured a torrid race and was well down the field, and ultimately the day ended as badly as possible for coop as he retired from the race on lap 18.

The weather continued to dry out and SJD was the first to test out slick tyres, it was a little too early for the Sauber who struggled to get any temperature into the red walled Supersoft tyres on exit and spent the next two laps battling to keep his car pointing in the right direction.

Skyzii appeared out of the pit-lane ahead of Spud who had planned his stops perfectly to minimise time lost in the pit-lane and he made third place his own with the Mclaren ahead being out of reach. The two McLaren cars had both pitted onto the dry tyres and maintained their lead with four laps remaining.

 

 

In difficult conditions in France, LMC_Boogster took the victory for the Woking based team and 12 valuable points in the championship.

 

 

Zak Brown was left speechless in euphoria as he saw both his cars come across the line to take a one-two finish ahead of the Red Bull of Spud in third.

Megglugpy dropped to fourth after missing out on strategy calls in comparison to Spud, whilst the retirements saw Coop and Mike suffer a frustrating session.

Boogster would take a slim one point lead over Skyzii into the next race in Monza, but with three winners in three races so far it is not over in Performance One.

 

Performance 2

After his victory in round one BWAClyde led the table ahead of WaveIntel and osteven002 as the teams headed to France. The rest of the field were aware that the French Grand Prix was much less of a power circuit and more about corner speed and technicality, this would open up the grid for multiple challengers come the chequered flag.

Qualifying saw a storming lap from Delange93 in the Force India take the pole ahead of NickLJThomson, who along with Scopefielder made use of their raw pace to put their under-powered Sauber and McLaren cars into second and third position.

KaW rounded out the second row alongside Scope whilst other pre season favourites WaveIntel and Jos would make up the third row.

However, it turned into a race to forget for both Delange and Nick as the front row qualifiers could only manage fifth and sixth in the race. Scopefielder made the most of their disappointment as he took the race victory. His victory was slightly out-shone by the fantastic display from Sab7786 who after starting at the back in 13th position battled through the field missing all the drama to come home in second position.

WaveIntel maintained his strong start to the season, he added another podium to his tally and took the lead in the championship, but with a hungry pack all looking to knock the Scotsman off his perch, he will certainly have to keep up the pace that has seen the young driver so successful in a short career.

 

Equal Performance 

F1

 

Sambamkid had opened his F1 account this season with three consecutive wins, he was comfortably ahead in the standings and with Jos and Speed_Queen both finding themselves off of the podium once each in their first three, it had given Sam a superb early opportunity to impose himself as the front-runner for this seasons F1 drivers champion.

Former Invictus champion Gamer_Da_Best262 has been absent for two of the first three races, he had only picked up tenth in Bahrain after a difficult race, but today was another story for the Mercedes driver.

Gamer took pole ahead of Sam, who could only line up alongside his team-mate as Mercedes cars locked out the front row. The second row saw Aleskiller and Speed_Queen paired up, the two would hope that Mercedes would trip up over each other into the first chicane.

It wasn’t to be for the rest of the field and come the end of a hard race that saw both Plexitz and Aleskiller take retrospective penalties from the stewards, Gamer would convert pole into the win and break the dominance of Sam who could only watch his team-mate pick up the winners trophy from the second step on the podium.

Scopefielder moved up three places from sixth into third whilst Speed_Queen had to digest another frustrating session as she dropped from fourth to eighth.

Sam-ster007and Megglugpy are both drivers who will hope to kick-start their season after both have suffered from poor starts to their debut seasons in F1.

 

SamBamKid could only manage second in France but extends his lead at the top of the standings after four races.

 

Sam maintains a healthy lead in the title race with 46 points with nearest rival Jos_Heinssie 20 points behind the Mercedes driver. It is going to take a monumental effort for someone to catch Sam this season, he is well on the way to another Invictus drivers championship and enforcing himself as one of the fastest, if not the fastest within the Invictus community.

 

 

F2

 

Red Bull may have believed they had struck gold after they signed the promoted F3 driver last season to a contract with the Milton Keynes based team, and Betrayer46 had not let them down so far this season.

He has taken a first,second and third in the first three races and leads the championship on 28 points ahead of Humbostone and WaveIntel.

The veteran driver would look to continue his good form at the top of the standings before we head to Italy next week, and a strong performance in France was on the mind of the entire Red Bull pit-wall.

There was a hint of rain in the air for qualifying and with pockets of rain showers appearing on the radar, it would be a rush to get out and set a competitive time.

It was Mercedes driver Humbostone who took pole position fractionally ahead of KieranT in second, there was just 52 thousandths of a second between the front row in what was an electric end to qualifying.

NickLJThomson and RickWR88 would line up on the second row with Ricks time of a 1m30.4 on the supersoft tyres saw him well ahead of drivers on the faster ultrasoft compound showing off the pace ability of the Canadian.

A problem with the electrical system kept championship leader in the garage all session long along with MrStim who’s Haas was sidelined with a hydraulic issue, both drivers would make up the final row of the grid in 13th and 14th places.

The threat of rain became more apparent for the field come the start to the race session and whilst it would be a dry start, the drivers were well aware that they would be entering changing conditions whilst racing.

As the lights went green, a good release from both Humbostone and Kieran saw the two battle into the first corner and then proceed to fight over the lead for the first laps of the race.

The expected rain started falling on lap six but with the warm track temperature allowed the cars to maintain dry running for the first half of the race even though the track surface was becoming trickier every lap.  LAP 16 saw a mix of dry tyres and intermediates tyres seen across the grid as drivers battled to find the best strategy.

The slick tyres started to lose traction and that gave intermediate runners the edge heading into the mid part of the race but not until 18 was DRS disabled. This indicated dry compound tyres would be totally ineffectual and the last cars to pit then came in for the grooved tyres.

The weather intensified on lap 20 and caused those who had just pitted for the green intermediates to once again dash into the pit-lane for the extreme wet tyres. However, in a huge mix up, both the Haas and Toro Rosso teams were caught out by late calls to pit and with both cars double stacked and the Haas team blocking the exit of the Toro Rosso box, it would be a frustrating wait for Gaz and Tony whilst the Haas pit-crew scrambled to bring out 2 sets of the blue walled tyres.

The varied strategies had worked out perfectly for Rick, who had found himself in the lead after the stops for wet tyres, he was being followed home by Humbostone as the pole-sitter looked to recover lost time after being displaced at the top of the running. Humbostone was slowly starting to reel in the Force India ahead, but after losing traction on the kerbs, the Mercedes driver found himself pointing in the wrong direction and now under threat from mj_coop who had enjoyed a much more positive race and found himself in third.

Rick would eventually come home and take the chequered flag and a victory for the Force India team. Humbostone held off the challenge from coop as they made up the podium whilst Betrayer had driven a great race in difficult conditions as he brought his Red Bull home in fourth after starting 14th.

It was a tace to forget for other championship challengers as WaveIntel and NickLJThomson both retired earlier in the race. Their downfall played perfectly into Betrayers hands and he would extend his gap at the top of the standings before we head to Monza next week.

 

F3

 

Unlike the rest of the leagues this week in France, it seemed F3 had the most luck as they were bathed in bright sunshine upon their arrival at Paul Ricard. The lead in the championship was held by Bren_Ons after his excellent start to the season but he was by no means alone at the top. Fascone, Captain_Stiff and Tejuarr all looked quick behind him and as we make our way through the first half of the season, it will all be about consistency for the grid when achieving points scoring every race.

The first foray onto the French Grand Prix circuit saw the session end with a surprise as pole was superbly taken by Booje in his debut race in Invictus. He crossed the line last of everyone on circuit and as one the two cars to use the ultra-soft tyre, he took pole for the Force India team.

Craig8728 lined up second after an excellent lap on the supersoft tyres, whilst BWAClyde and ColinJ would make up the second row and have an eye on getting a fast start on the leaders ahead.

Bren could only manage seventh and it was another nightmare session for Spud, he has struggled hugely over the first few races and a hydraulic issue kept the Mercedes in the garage for the entirety of the session. The British veteran would be forced to start from the back and make up a lot of places if he was to make anything of the race.

It was another glorious day in southern France for the F3 drivers, with no rain in the air and only blue skies forecasted it would give the field the best opportunity at wheel to wheel racing.

Ferrari driver Craig was the fast starter and utilising a perfect release off of the line, he would make his way into the lead of the race ahead of Booje who dropped to second, with BWAClyde and Tejuarr in third and fourth.

A race ending incident on the first lap for ColinJ after contact with FerociousDan and Captain_Stiff running deep into turn four and then subsequently losing front aero after contact with Mike highlighted the fast and furious opening laps.

 

 

Craig8728 was absolutely dominant to pick up his first victory in the F3 league. He lead the field from lap one and took a statement making win.

 

Craig started building a gap over Clyde, who had been promoted into second after BooJe made a very early stop to come off of the ultra-soft tyres. This promoted Tejuarr onto the provisional podium as the Ferrari team garage looked on in delight.

JamieMet has shown great pace in his second F3 race and after a lap five overtake on Tejuarr into the chicane at turn 8 saw the Red Bull ease into second place.

The fight in the mid-field was captivating for the viewer, as Mike, Dan, Booje and Clyde all fought over eighth place and it was two laps of pure nose to tail racing. It ended abruptly for Clyde and Mike who made contact at turn three, this allowed the four to split up.

Craig had built a comprehensive lead over the field after the pit-stops and with a 14 second gap back to F1Richard who had used a superb over-cut to move up past Tejuarr and Bren_Ons. Lap 18 saw JamieMet on the faster super-soft tyres become a real threat for the podium and he breezed past Tej for third a lap later.

It was lap 21 when Jamie finally moved back up into second position and after dispatching both Bren and Richard he would go about trying to cut down the lead to Craig. However, the Scottish Ferrari driver was in a class of his own around Paul Ricard and it would certainly take a monumental effort for the Red Bull to catch and pass him.

Captain_Stiff had endured a terrible race after two first lap problems saw him at the rear of the field by 26 seconds. He pushed a set of soft tyres 17 laps which gave him the prime ultra-soft tyre for a final seven lap dash to the line.

Appearing out of the pit-lane in 13th the Renault driver had an explosive first three laps on his fresh rubber and the British driver drove out of his skin and found himself ninth after some excellent power laps which also gave him the fastest lap of the race.

The laps wound down and it was a comfortable victory for Craig, he drove a masterful race after a very strong performance all evening long. He picked up his first win of the season and a well deserved kick-start to his season. Jamie and Bren_Ons picked up second and third respectively which maintained a strong start for both drivers in the title challenge.

Bren_Ons extended his lead in the title, but with Jamie and Craig both looking strong it will not be an easy ride for the Sauber.

SirSpud finally looked to have garnered some luck as he came home in fifth after a torrid start to the season for the Mercedes driver. Booje couldn’t match his qualifying lap to race pace and came home seventh.

The F3 grid once again provided fast paced action from flag to flag and with positions changing all race long up and down the field it proved just how unpredictable and competitive F3 has become.

 

 

Join us next week for the Italian Grand Prix at the famous Monza, we have seen some fantastic racing there in the past and are with no doubt in store for some more.

Italy never fails to provide close battles and upset results, with cars hitting 227mph down the famous straight. It is not one to miss!

For all announcements and updates from the leagues make sure you follow the Invictus twitter feed @InvictusRL for all your information about next weeks races!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Invictus Racing League – Battling in Budapest – Round three review

Just 30 minutes from the picturesque cities of Buda-pest, the Hungaroring offers a strange mix of a fast flowing corners but with the feel of a street circuit in a tricky and enticing track layout which promotes close racing but hard overtaking opportunities.

The Hungaroring has provided some scintillating racing in previous Invictus Racing League seasons and with no reason to expect any different the feeling in the paddock was that of wary optimism.

Hungary can be highly rewarding to those who are brave but equally can punish the slightest mistakes with devastating results.

It was round three of the Invictus calendar and with two very competitive founds under the wheels of the drivers already. The expectation of another fantastic week of racing was on the mind of all involved.

No-assists

The no-assist championship had started with a bang over the previous two rounds. The championship lead was poised nicely between three drivers at the top as BoyBetterKnow, Scopefielder and Humbostone all vied for top spot in the standings before we head to France for the first race at Circuite Paul Ricard.

It was a beautiful blue skied day awaiting for qualifying and with the cheers of the crowd echoing across the circuit the cars started rumbling down the pit lane and onto the track surface.

Pole was taken in superb fashion by the Force India of Nikki9095 who just pipped current joint points leader Humbostone to second with BoyBetterKnow sitting just behind them.

It was a disastrous session for xMikexSI who crashed out early before setting a time and for Speed_Queen80 who set a time outside of the 107% time of Nikki meaning the Williams driver would have to ask for permission from the circuit stewards to line up on the grid. A dry race was forecasted and it was well received by the grid as 14 cars would be heading down to turn one.

The red lights went out and the man on the charge off the line was BoyBetterKnow who seemed to have lightning reactions off the line as he breezed past Humbostone and Nikki to take the lead heading into the first corner.

Nikki followed the Sauber closely through the initial laps as the top three made a break over the rest of the field and and they pushed hard to open up a three second lead over Joel who had equally made a good start to move up into fourth.

Scott lost the lead on lap three and was struggling to get his card slowed down for corners and at the end of lap three after losing control in sector two the decision was made by the Sauber pit-wall to retire to car as it seemed a hydraulic issue would put a premature end to the championship leaders race.

He wouldn’t be the only car on track struggling for grip as cameras picked up Joel losing control of his Force India at turn five which in turn dropped him to the back of the field in what has been a torrid start to the season for him.

It turned into a nightmare afternoon for Otmar Szafnauer as Nikki9095 lost control of the sister Force India, as he headed towards the wall on the exit of turn nine he collided with the unfortunate Humbostone as the McLaren pit-wall looked on in disbelief as their driver was forced into an early stop for a wing change whilst Nikki retired from the race after stalling the car trying to recover from a second spin just two corners later.

The man on the move was Mamafisher who had made a superb first stint work to move up from 12th to second as he followed Jos_Heinssie who had been promoted to the race lead with the two circulating at a good pace on the soft tyre.

Mamafisher made his only stop on lap 17 and used a superb one lap undercut to pass Jos for the lead of the race as the two were followed by Delange93 who had made a quiet but effective move to a podium position.

The race went down to the wire and Mamafisher drove brilliantly to keep Jos behind but after a time penalty was dropped into the lap of the race leader he knew that all hard-work to maintain the lead would most likely be in vain.

The two crossed the line with Mamafisher managing to hold off the dutch driver. However, it was Jos who was promoted to the race victory after the stewards placed the time penalties upon the initial winner.

DeLange93 took a fantastic third in the Haas as he continued his impressive start to the season

 

Delange93 picked up a fantastic third in the Haas whilst Speed_Queen80 came home fourth after a good display in the underpowered Williams. Humbostone fought back after his early tangle with Nikki and recovered to fifth and as the only driver of the three at the top of the standings before the race to pick up points he took a slender lead heading to France next week.

Scopefielder had a disappointing race and finished over 40 seconds down in 11th as the Toro Rosso struggled all race to find any pace in an off day for the Swede.

Humbostone leads the field in the championship by six points but with the top three finishing either out or down the order. It will certainly open up the championship to the rest of the grid.

 

Performance 1

After his victory in Bahrain, Renault driver Tejuarr was on the hunt for another positive result at the Hungaroring. The ultrasoft tyre was always going to be the dominant performer in qualifying and mj_coop was the driver who made it count when it mattered.

The Red Bull driver obliterated the rest of the field to take pole by over seven tenths ahead of LMC_Boogster in second who dragged his Sauber around superbly to get it on the front row.

The race was poised nicely as drivers such as AaronJSpence, Tony-Y and SirSpud were all starting further down the grid so would be in the mood for a charge early on.

As the race went green an immediate problem for Ferrari driver xMIKExSI saw the car spin the tyres and lose control as he found himself pointing the wrong direction ina  move that baffled the pit-wall leading to speculate about a fluid leak onto the tyres on the formation lap.

Ahead, mj_coop maintained the lead into turn one and it was last weeks winner in Tejuarr who got the jump into second position past Boogster who battled throughout the lap with the Renault into the penultimate corner. It wasn’t the outcome he wanted and after colliding with the Renault he lost the rear end thus dropping him back to the back end of the field.

Jamie_6328 had made a great start moving into third, but after a spin at turn five on lap two disaster struck. The Haas speared across the circuit into the wall and as it rebounded it was collected by the unfortunate SirSpud in the Renault as both drivers ended their races earlier than planned with terminal damage.

The two also caused Tony-Y to lose control of his Sauber and collide with the wall. It called the pit-crew into action early and dropped Tony to the back of the field effectively ruling himself out of a podium position.

A lap later and a mistake from Ferrari_LCFC10 saw him lose front aero components when he ran into the back of Skyzii into turn 15 and the wing change would cause him to lose precious time in the pit-window in what was a close knit start to the race.

mj_coop controlled the first half of the race and even after making his stop onto the medium tyre he breezed past SJD easily into turn one and quickly caught the Sauber of Boogster on lap 20 of 35 as the then leaders of Mike and Boogster pitted to make their first and second stops respectively. This freed up coop to push and extend his lead at the front with only SJD keeping up with the Red Bull.

Lap 22 saw the unfortunate end for Tejuarr as last weeks victor lost control of his car in sector two, after running well in the midfield early. It wasn’t to be for the experienced driver as he cut a frustrated figure in the post race interviews.

The race distance started to count down and with six laps left it was a comfortable lead for coop as SJD tried to keep him honest in second, Fascone who had found himself in third after a first lap pit-stop meant he was on almost 30 lap old tyres by the end as he saw the gap between himself and Boogster disappearing lap upon lap.

There was still time for controversy as another collision between Skyzii and FerrariLFC saw the two spin at turn two and ultimately fall back behind the recovering Tony. The two were immediately called to the stewards after the race to explain their sides of the story in what looks like a testy rivalry building between the two.

The chequered flag saw a perfect race finished off by mj_coop who took home the pole, victory and fastest lap as he gave us a dominant display in front of the passionate fans.

SJD came in second after starting seventh in a drive that saw plaudits from the paddock after the race. Fascone took provisional third ahead of Boogster who took a three second penalty for an earlier infraction demoted him back behind the Irishman who finished the race on 34 lap old medium tyres.

A post race dispute was raised by the Sauber team and after speaking with the stewards it was agreed to rescind the penalty and therefore promoted Boogster back into third.

mj_coop leads the championship heading to the Paul Ricard circuit next week with 15 points, but with a field who will all be eyeing up the title there is certainly no reason not to expect the lead to change come France.

 

Equal Performance 

F1

Sambamkid had started off this season in his usual style as he took race victory in the first two races and as the grid all made their way to the circuit the talk was all about how to stop his dominance.

Sam lead the way by 6 points to Jos_Heinssie and looked in fine form to continue his winning ways as qualifying began. However, an issue with the Mercedes in the garage confined him to start from the back of the grid and not set a time meaning a trip to the stewards to cover the 107% ruling would be undertaken.

In his absence it was mdoran09 who took pole position by the slightest of margins. The Toro Rosso set a time fractionally under seven hundredths of a second faster than Tamworthfox in second whilst Sam would have to pass the McLaren of Speed_Queen80 if he hoped to get himself back up the field.

The drivers woke up the next morning to a cold and wet track as they prepared for a much slipperier surface than qualifying and had to reassess their breaking points.

Mdoran lead the grid away from the line and kept his lead into turn one as the field tentatively made their way around the first lap.

Sambam moved past SpeedQueen but a brave move from the Mclaren saw her retake the position from Sam as they engaged in a fun battle of the next few laps.

The leader started lap four and with a lead of around a second it was looking like a close race was in store but the Toro Rosso pit-wall had their heads in their hands minutes later as their driver lost power and eventually drive as he rounded the final corners they made the decision to retire the car in a bitter blow to mdoran.

The rain had stopped and a drying line had quickly appeared on the track surface, this caused a rush of cars to flood into the pit-lane and with a mix of strategy through the field it eventually presented Foxyred2000 with the lead of the race ahead of Tamworth.

 

Sambamkid took another victory as he took his third consecutive victory to start the season

 

Speed_Queen80 and Sambam were still continuing their fight and finally on lap 8 Sam made the move on SQ and pulled away quickly and breezed past Jos on lap 10 as the Mercedes driver had already fought his way to third from last on the grid.

After pitting to remove the intermediate tyres the top two of Foxy and Tamworth had both put on a set of soft compound tyres which meant they would have to stop again, whilst Sam had used the medium tyre giving himself a chance at running them to the end. That was the case by lap 21 as both Foxyred and Tamworth were forced to stop and relinquish the lead to Sam.

As the race came to its crescendo Sambam was still leading but finding his lead being slowly etched away by Foxxyred and Tamworth who had both dispatched Speed_Queen for a place on the podium as they used the faster compound to move back through the field.

The laps ran out for Foxyred and the McLaren failed to catch Sambam who had driven a masterful race in changeable conditions to take the victory and a third win in a row from ninth and last on the grid.

Foxred2000 picked up a well deserved second whilst penalities demoted TamworthFox back behind Speed_Queen80 who picked up her second consecutive third place as she looks to get her season going and push towards a championship challenge.

Sambamkid maintains his lead at the top on 36 points with a perfect record so far. It is now up to the rest of the grid to play catch up but with drivers like Gamer_Da_Best262 waiting to return. Sam may not have it all his own way this season.

 

F2

Betrayer46 and WaveIntel were already reigniting their rivalry but this season in F2 as the two led the field after the first two races.

They wouldn’t have it easy though and with a returning Humbostone along with mj_coop and Benjym214 there were a plethora of drivers willing to push them off the perch at the top of the championship table.

Qualifying saw an almost even split as six drivers chose to start to the ultrasoft tyres whilst five decided for the soft tyre. It was only Kieran who decided against a time for the session and sat on row six at the back of the grid.

It was business as usual for the Red Bull team as Betrayer put his car on pole by two tenths to Humbostone in the Mercedes. Whilst out of the harder compound runners RickWR88 dropped ahead of mj_coop as the two started seventh and eighth.

WaveIntel could only make it into tenth and would find a very busy track ahead on the run down to turn one in a disappointing session for the Scottish driver.

Come race time it was a nightmare start for Betrayer, the championship leader didn’t get the best launch off the line and found himself swamped by the field as almost four cars battled for the lead into turn one.

After brief contact with Humbostone pushed both cars out wide both the Mercedes driver and Betrayer found themselves losing positions with Betrayer in sixth.

Fulchaa was the initial beneficiary of the start as he moved up from fourth on the grid to the race lead but with on the second lap the McLaren driver was already complaining of overheating tyres. This was evident as he was caught and overhauled easily by Humbostone and with the ultra soft tyres already struggling on Fulchaas car it from bad to worse.

He lost several positions to NeverMiss and Jamie but as he rounded the final corner he lost all grip and spun directly into the path of the recovering Betrayer. The two collided and although the the contact was minor it seemed Fulchaa would be forced to retire with an unknown issue.

Lap four saw the retirement of FerrariLFC10 who after picking up wing damage in a collision with Kieran found himself struggling for grip on the notoriously aero critical circuit and at turn five after running wide he was caught from behind by RickWr88 and Ferrari was put into the wall and therefore ended the race early for the Haas driver.

Mj_coop was the driver on the move early in the race and utilising the soft compound tyre to move up as the ultra soft runners began to stop on lap four. He was kept company by Kieran as the two tried to stretch a gap over the rest of the field.

As the race reached its half way point mj_coop was still in the lead on the soft tyres whilst Humbostone and Jamie had both move past NickLJ into podium positions. The drivers were made aware by the team weather reports that a prolonged rain cloud had moved into course with the circuit and on lap 17 the first drops of rain started falling.

This greatly impacted both Rick and Kieran who both pitted a few laps previously and would need to factor in another stop for the inevitable intermediate tyre.

Lap 18 saw chaos break out for the Ferrari team mates as NickLJThomson lost the rear end of the car at turn one and found himself facing in the wrong direction as he dropped out of a strong fourth back towards the end of the grid.

It would be a hard recovery for Nick as he struggled to get any temperature back into his old soft compound tyres on the slightly damp track surface.

The Maranello teams woes were then immediately compounded as their young driver promoted from F3 last season and championship challenger WaveIntel hit the wall at speed at turn four and ended his race much earlier than planned.

This was the time for the pit stops to happen and every driver came in on lap 19. The new tyres didn’t suit everyone however, NeverMiss00 who was looking at attacking Betrayer for fifth lost the rear end of his McLaren at the exit of turn three and added his name to the growing list on non finishers.

With ten laps to run the battle for the lead was between mj_coop, Humbostone and Jamie_6328 as the three all circulated within 1.5 seconds of each other. Coop started to look like he was in control of the race but on lap 28 the Red Bull driver made the slightest of mistakes which in the wet would always be punished as the leader dropped from first to third in one corner.

That promoted Humbostone into the lead and the Mercedes driver would now have the Renault of Jamie his main challenger for the race victory.

Lap 29 saw another retirement on circuit as Rick ended his race early in what was becoming a very difficult track surface and with five laps remaining there would only be seven runners left.

Jamie saw his opportunity on lap 32 as Humbostone make a mistake at turn five and he needed no invitation to send it up the inside for the race lead and he would go on to lead the final laps of the race.

Jamie crossed the line and took the provisional victory but a stewards penalty devastated the Renault driver as he dropped back to second behind Humbostone who would claim his first victory of the season. Mj_coop drew a frustrated air about him in the post race media discussions as penalties dropped him behind his team mate Betrayer who took an unlikely podium after a disappointing race.

Betrayer maintains the lead of the title and with WaveIntel non scoring it was a great result for the veteran English driver but with Humbostone, Jamie and Coop looking strong. This is not going to be a straight forward battle for anyone to claim the F2 championship.

F3

It was all change in F3 this week as Gazzaman96 and Paulo both saw themselves promoted to F2 whilst JamieMet92 joined the F3 league. The promotion effectively promoted BrenOns to championship leader and with a gaggle of cars behind all vying for points such as Fascone, Tejuarr and CaptainStiff it proved once again just how competitive F3 is.

Blue skies greeted the drivers in Hungary and with a dry race in store it would all be about who could connect up the perfect lap during qualifying.

As with most leagues it was a split grid of strategy calls as the drivers mixed between the soft compound and ultra soft and it was Fascone who set a blistering 1.16.9 on the ultrashort tyres who dominated qualifying to take pole position ahead of team mate xMIKExSI as the Toro Rosso drivers locked out the front row for the second time this season.

Osteven pipped SirSpud and CaptainStiff to third as the Mercedes of Spud was sat in between the two Renault drivers with F1Richard in fifth.

BrenOns had a poor session and after losing the rear end of his Sauber on the main straight with three minutes to go he had no time to recover and set another lap meaning it would be a charge from the back if he was planning on continuing his strong performances so far.

Fascone got a rocket of a start off the line and maintained his lead heading to turn one as Mike and osteven swapped positions for second and third. The Renault driver looked to be struggling early on the ultra soft tyres and by the mid point of the second lap had already haemorrhaged a three and a half second lead to Fascone.

Mike made a bold move back on Steven at turn 11 as the Toro Rosso moved back to a one-two position as the Renault started to lose a lot of time and after being passed by Spud down the main straight allowed his team-mate CaptainStiff past as the two split strategy.

The fighting in the midfield was intense and whilst F1Richard and JamieMet fought over fifth and sixth the battle behind was raging between the two Ferrari team mates in Craig8728 and Tejuarr. The two vastly experienced drivers were playing the team game and Tej made life easy for Craig as the two swapped places on lap four.

They immediately went on the offensive against F1Richard who had fallen back from his fight with Jamie and after a mistake from Richard saw his McLaren clip the wall at turn four he came back into the path of Craig who did masterfully well not to cause an accident which could have easily caught out four drivers.

However a mature drive from Craig saw him wait and move past Richard into turn 12 whilst his team mate Tej made a daring lunge into turn 13 as Richard started feeling the effect of a lack of aero as he started struggling to get the McLaren around the lap.

NotoriousLIP has had a disappointing start to the season in the Mercedes and that continued today as he retired early of after hitting the wall after turn three. The Irishman was tipped to do well this season but will hope the luck returns as we head to France before he starts to get left behind in the title fight.

Fascone and Mike had made their stops early to come off the used ultra soft as the two had started to come under threat from Spud and Stiff behind. The new race leaders then found themselves with free track ahead and Spud stretched his lead over Stiff who started to struggle on the tyres as JamieMet started to reel in the Renault.

 

Fascone was untouchable in Hungary and as hard as he tried, the Mercedes of Spud could not catch the Irishman

 

Jamie made the move on Stiff into turn one on lap eleven as the two fought over second. The quiet mover on the circuit however was BrenOns, he had started on the medium tyre and by lap 11 moved past Tejuarr into fifth as the current championship leader was starting to impose himself on the top five.

The race began plateau as it entered its mid point and with short battles taking over during the pit window it allowed Fascone to continue stretching his lead over SirSpud at the top of the field after Spud made his stop. The top five of Fascone, Spud, Jamie, Stiff and BrenOns had broken away from the rest of the field and it was championship leader BrenOns who had utilised a strong first stint on the mediums to move past Stiff on lap 28 as they two swapped fourth and fifth position.

The race came to its conclusion on lap 35 as Fascone came across the line to take a dominant victory having displayed a commanding lead throughout the entire race. He was followed by Spud who after two non finishes was delighted to be back on the podium as he looks to kick start his season.

JamieMet took a debut podium as the Red Bull came home in third ahead of BrenOns and Captain_Stiff as the two maintained more solid points scoring early in the season.

The Ferrari team-mates of Craig and Tejuarr had a race to forget as both tried the two stop but to no avail and with a spin from Tej early on into his second stint he would only recover to tenth place after a last lap over-take on the Renault of osteven who was frustrated after not transferring his qualifying pace over to race pace.

Bren_Ons maintains the lead in the championship but with Fascone now looking ominous behind after two strong races in Australia and Hungary he certainly will throw his hat in the ring for a battle for the title.

Behind it’s all to play for as Captain-Stiff, Tejuarr, Craig8728 are all looking up at the top two with the intent of putting themselves into title contention.

 

 

Once again it was another superb round of action in the Invictus Racing League. We depart Hungary and head to the Circuit Paul Ricard next week as we make our Invictus debut in France for the first time. The circuit will be a new challenge to all and with run off areas galore. It will be a fast paced and frenetic race packed with action from flag to flag.

 

 

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Invictus Racing League F3 Season Review

The inaugural Invictus Racing League Formula 3 series has come to its conclusion and the book was closed on a truly enthralling and thrilling series.

In the end it was Betrayer46 who took the crown as champion after a dominant season that only saw him off of the podium once throughout the eventual 11 race competition. He finally saw off the challenger WaveIntel who certainly had a breakout season with a runner up position in F3 and taking home the Performance league championship.

The top two battled it out throughout the season trading wins and points but further down the grid the table was ever changing with the midfield all scrapping over a top six finish. Third and fourth in the standings were taken by AaronJSpence and mj_coop respectively as coop in particular will rue a poor start to the season for not elevating himself into the title challenge.

SirSpud72 took a comfortable fifth with some strong results throughout the season, notably a podium in the first and last races of the season while it was BWAClyde who just pipped Captain_Stiff to sixth place in the standings as Clyde made up for some disappointing results with a podium in Britain and a fourth in Suzuka to secure a top six finish in what was a very competitive midfield.

 

After pre-season was dominated by NeverMiss00, the young Haas driver went into the season high on confidence and backed by many to take the title. He took victory in Australia and Russia and as the paddock filled up at round one in Mexico City the talk was all about a potential Haas vs Ferrari rivalry.

The Haas team had signed two young but hungry drivers in NeverMiss and WaveIntel who were hoping to stamp their intention on the track early but the self-proclaimed ‘old guard’ of the league were the Ferrari team of Betrayer46 and Tejuarr behind the wheel of the famous Italian manufacture. They were determined to give the Haas drivers a hard time on circuit and show that they were yet ready to allow Haas domination.

The season kicked off in Mexico and with a shower of confetti and cheers from the passionate Mexican fans it was WaveIntel who took pole position and subsequently the win whilst Betrayer who missed out on pole by three hundredths of a second just wasn’t able to keep up with WaveIntel in the final stages of the race.

SirSpud took home third position after starting seventh in a track that he enjoys and with his team mate Fascone in fifth it was a good day for Mercedes.

Pre-season favourite NeverMiss had a shocking start to the season as a first lap crash saw his race end with a bang as the Haas team were left with a car to re-build before the following week.

A win for WaveIntel gave Haas much needed relief after NeverMiss crashed out on the first lap.

 

The fast Interlagos circuit was next up as the teams made their way down through Central to South America. Pole was taken by mj_coop who set a brilliant lap to put his Toro Rosso ahead of Tejuarr who lined up ahead of his team-mate as WaveIntel struggled in qualifying and could only manage seventh.

The rain came down for the start of the race and with the prospect of a dry surface on the horizon it would all be about keeping it on track throughout the wet period.

It was a disastrous start for coop as he lost positions off the line and was then a passenger in an accident as NeverMiss lost control and put both cars into the wall. This once again ended NeverMiss’ race early but coop managed to limp back to the pits but he could only manage an 11th place finish. The race victory was taken by Betrayer who was superb on his intermediate tyres to get a lead before the dry tyres. He was joined on the podium by AaronJSpence in the Sauber and WaveIntel who made it up to third.

The night race in Singapore was third on the calendar as the cars raced around the Marina Bay street circuit in perfect conditions. Mj_coop took another pole position but after a mistake following his first pit-stop he retired which allowed Betrayer to guarantee the lead. The points leader didn’t have it all his own way as he held off a final lap attack from Aaron who seemed to have the move done before wing damage halted his final lap fight. In a surprise showing it was a superb race for Gazzaman96 in the Force India who came all the way from 12th to third and take his and the team’s first podium of the season. Tejuarr and Captain_Stiff both had excellent races after early mistakes saw the pit crews in action before expected as the two recovered for respectable fifth and sixth places respectively.

The first European race of the season was the home of Ferrari in Monza but the two scarlet racers had their worst points total collectively of the season.

An issue for Betrayer in qualifying saw him start from the back of the grid and only manage sixth place allowing WaveIntel to take home a comfortable and dominant victory ahead of Aaron who maintained his good form with a third consecutive second place.

The surprise result of the week was the spectacular drive from Renault driver F1Richard67 who took third after impressing all afternoon. Pole sitter was once again mj_coop but after suffering a spin at the Parabollica he required an extra pit-stop as he recovered to ninth.

 

 

F1Richard on his way to a debut podium in F3

 

 

The home of British motorsport in Silverstone held round five of the championship and after utilising brilliant one lap pace BWAClyde put his Red Bull on pole position.

However, the race victory was taken by mj_coop after an explosive final lap saw coop and Aaron collide exiting Stowe which with two corners left saw Aaron crash out and coop take to the grass allowing Betrayer through but after missing a gear on the final corner it gave coop the victory on the line as he finally managed to put his speed into practice.

Betrayer picked up second and was joined on the rostrum by Clyde who did very well to stay with the leaders. WaveIntel had earlier crashed out after an accident with the returning JFMUFC at Stowe saw both pick up extensive damage in a bitter blow for the Haas driver’s title hopes.

 

 

BWAClyde picked up his first pole position this season and finished in third after a slow start to the season. Christian Horner was quoted saying “Clyde really did well for us out there today and a pole and podium shows just how fast he can be when the car is set up right for him”

 

 

The final race before the season break was in China as the grid looked forward to the Shanghai circuit. It was SirSpud who had a rocket of a lap to get his Mercedes to the top of the times.

Unfortunately for Spud it wasn’t transferred to race pace as he dropped to seventh as mj_coop took a second win in the Toro Rosso followed home by Betrayer and WaveIntel as the Scotsman looked to make up for his non finish in Silverstone.

The season week long break became two as the Canadian Grand Prix was postponed and subsequently cancelled as the grid moved straight on from Montreal to Suzuka for the Japanese Grand Prix but it was business as usual for the top two as Betrayer took the win from WaveIntel whilst Aaron got back onto the podium in third. BWAClyde took a credible fourth as drivers like Fascone, Stiff and Notorious picked up useful points further down the order.

The beautiful city of Budapest was the location of round nine as the cars would race around the notoriously difficult overtaking circuit the Hungaroring.

The established top four had already made a break for it early in the race and it was Betrayer who won once again after taking his first pole position of the season. Coop and WaveIntel rounded out the podium but further back there were points for Bren_Ons and osteven002 as the two managed eighth and ninth.

Betrayer’s two victories had put him within touching distance of the title and with WaveIntel as his only challenger it seemed like a matter of time before he would clinch the points required.

However, the Haas driver was not prepared to give up the fight and a victory in Bahrain and a third for Betrayer who was beaten by coop for second meant that with two races left in the season it would mean that Betrayer only required a seventh place finish to win the title in Austin.  Further back Spud, Notorious and Bren_Ons all picked up useful points as the fight in the midfield for sixth to eleventh was extremely close.

Knowing that Betrayer would miss the final race in Malaysia it was a crucial race for him to wrap up the title as a ninth/tenth plus two wins for WaveIntel would see him snatch the title from the Maranello team. All worries from the pit-wall were quelled as Betrayer took the race victory and therefore put the title out of reach of his rivals with a race to spare.

WaveIntel stayed with him and picked up second with Aaron in third but it was the red garage who would be celebrating late into the night with a trip to Sixth Street in Austin and sample the fantastic night life. The team also celebrated wrapping up the constructor’s championship, with Betrayer and Tejuarr taking that accolade back to the stacked trophy cabinet within Maranello.

It was a fantastic display from Betrayer in Austin and he clinched the title with a race to spare

 

The final race of the season was hosted by the outgoing Sepang circuit in Malaysia and it certainly threw up a whole load of excitement as the race was predicted to be rain affected and with strategies all different across the grid it turned out to be an outstanding race.

WaveIntel finished off the season in style with a victory and his fourth of the campaign. He was followed by SirSpud who drove well to get second but it was an incredible display from Williams driver osteven002, his best result to date was ninth and using a long first stint he went from 15th on the grid to take home a first podium as he was cheered on by the rest of the field. He was followed by Captain_Stiff who after spinning out of third early on recovered from ninth to fourth to pick up his best result of the season in a frenetic end to the season.

 

osteven002 went from 15th to 3rd in a rain affected race in one of the drives of the season

 

Betrayer was quoted after claiming his title that it was “a pleasure to race against the field and that to win the title in such esteemed company means a lot” before thanking the team with “Forza Ferrari” and with five wins over the season he certainly set the benchmark for others to follow.

It was a truly deserved title for Betrayer and with such a consistent season in regards to pace and results no one could offer up a better recipient of the inaugural F3 trophy. The F3 league has shown that while not the fastest league in IRL that the racing and comradery between drivers of all teams was second to none and the races offered excitement unrivalled.

 

Betrayer now has to find space to put his F3 title trophy

 

 

WaveIntel took home the award for the most fastest laps over the season and it was the fast starting Captain_Stiff who made the most positions from qualifying to race results. While the only drivers to start and finish every race were both Renault drivers of Stiff and F1Richard in a consistent season for the Enstone team.

There is a very good chance that we see drivers like Betrayer, Coop and WaveIntel promoted to F2 next season but with such a competitive league left behind and with drivers ready to battle it out in the F1 2018 game. We are in store for an absolutely incredible season. Can the likes of Spud, Notorious, Clyde or Stiff look at taking up the challenge? But with so many drivers on the grid enduring positive seasons we can expect more of the same next season.

There have already been rumours of drivers linking up already and alliances forming so with contracts up with current teams it will be interesting to see who partners who next season.

The season was exciting, competitive and explosive from flag up in Australia for pre-season to flag down in Malaysia. Credit is due to all drivers for making it a memorable season and the admin team for creating the positive and fun community within the league.

Registrations are open for F1 2018 so join up now and experience it for yourself!