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View this race as it happened here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQief-fgNCk, and see the latest standings here: http://otlracing.com/f12018-season-one/

ABOUT THE TRACK

The OTL F1 2018 league moved on to round 3 and the German GP, and the question on everybody’s lips was “can anybody put up a fight and challenge Reece360 hd 2 for the win?” The answer was an emphatic yes! The German grand prix takes place at Hockenheim, an enjoyable track for every driver as long as you can nail the setup. Hockenheim was first used in 1970 but in a much different form to today’s shortened layout. The track has 17 corners and a lap length of 4.574km, of which the drivers had to withstand 34 laps for a total race distance of 306.44 km. The first corner is a particularly difficult one to get right whilst avoiding picking up time penalties, most drivers doing exactly that but none so suffering more than Dazfell who picked up a massive 18 seconds worth during the race. The track has five high speed sections and one of the few tracks that has 3 DRS zones.

QUALIFYING

The tyres available for this race were the US, S and the M compound, so the second fastest compound was 2 compounds softer than the first. This meant to try an alternative strategy and start on the soft compound, you would be giving up more than a second out of your lap time during qualifying. Nevertheless, four drivers opted for this strategy, those being Midzy15, Reece360 hd 2, Dazfell and JamieOC2004. A few mistakes were made during the session, with AVERAGE SHARPIE spinning on his US, JamieOC2004 spinning onto the grass on his softs, and Reece360 hd 2 running off of the track at the hairpin also on the softs, later describing the compound as “worthless” and “not a qualifying tyre”.

It was Midzy15 who set a fantastic lap, achieving his first pole position of the season with a time of 1:11.702. Reece260 hd 2 lined up alongside him with a lap time of 1:11.822, 0.120 seconds slower, those 2 being the only two drivers into the 1.11’s.

In 3rd we had Dazfell, 0.335 seconds off the ultimate pace. All three drivers on the soft compound. 4th was Muellcomic92336 with a great qualifying at his home gp and his best of the season, showing a constant improvement.

The third row of the grid was filled by AVERAGE SHARPIE and AshManDjango, in desperate need of a good result to get his season off and running. 4th row was JamieOC2004 in 7th, the last person on the soft compound, and 8th was MrFish 1986. 9th was Quilkor, who had OTL DAVEALEX4 for company on row 5, the last row being filled by OTL legger Ezzie1972.

THE RACE

The lights went out and initially it looked like Reece360 hd 2 got away the best off of the line but due to alot of wheel spin, Midzy15 was able to lead the race after the first corner while Dazfell went round the outside of Reece360 hd 2 and was forced a little bit wide.

Dazfell just got ahead when Muellcomic92336, on the faster US tyre dived down the inside of his team mate and Dazfell snatching 2nd position. Reece360 hd 2 momentarily dropped down to fourth place as Muellcomic92336 lead Dazfell down the straights. Going through the hairpin Muellcomic92336 managed to hold on to 2nd from his team mate and Dazfell, the latter dropping behind Reece360 hd 2 and having to settle into fourth for now. OTL DAVEALEX4 had dropped all the way to the back of the grid as had AshManDjango.

Dazfell then picked up his first penalty of the race on lap 2, while Reece360 hd 2 finally got passed his team mate on lap 3 with Dazfell managing to get through as well. Dazfell then picked up the slipstream of Reece360 hd 2 and made a move for 2nd at the hairpin but couldn’t quite complete the move. Muellcomic92336, Mrfish1986 and AshManDjango all pitted on lap 4, changing onto the soft compound tyre. Dazfell then kept within the 1 second DRS gap but couldn’t get close enough to make a move on Reece360 hd 2.

These two were inching up to Midzy15 who was leading the race by 2.5 seconds after the first lap. Reece360 hd 2 had finally caught up to Midzy15 by lap 9, at this time Dazfell had fell back a little bit. Reece360 hd 2 got the split stream on the long straight and had a little look into the hairpin but decided against a dive down the inside. They went side by side for the rest of the lap with Reece360 hd 2 finally getting the lead by the end of the lap. Both then went side by side leading onto the straight again and through the hairpin with Reece360 hd 2 just coming out into the lead. It was again on the long straight when Midzy15 picked up the slipstream and dived down the inside at the hairpin but went too deep, forcing Reece360 hd 2 off the track. Roles were reversed on the long straight, allowing Reece360 hd 2 to regain 1st place through the hairpin when he finally pit on lap 13, followed by Dazfell who both pit onto the medium compound.

Midzy15 decided to stay out an extra lap and lost a lot of time, just coming out ahead of Dazfell. JamieOC2004 had made his way up to fourth after pitting on lap 15 onto the medium compound as well, the same lap as Muellcomic92336 and Quilkor were having a battle which ended with Muellcomic92336 keeping 5th and Quikor losing a lot of time after running deep at the hairpin in 6th. MrFish 1986 and OTL DAVEALEX4 had a great battle on lap 17 when the former went up the inside through the hairpin, but the latter managed to hang on to 8th by holding it around the outside. At this point Reece360 hd 2 was leading the field by around 2 seconds. Mrfish 1986 had a look up the inside again at the hairpin on lap 19, they both went side by side through the fast left hander when OTL DAVEALEX4 managed to keep the lead. They then both pitted, changing onto the soft compound tyre. OTL DAVEALEX4 came out behind Ezzie1972 but managed to overtake on the long straight, getting a car in between him and MrFish 1986. Midzy15 was coming round the penultimate corner on lap 20 when he ran wide onto the gravel and lost 2nd place to Dazfell, afterwards saying “he had to push to hard to keep up with Reece360 hd 2”. A lap later AshManDjango received a 10 second penalty for exceeding track limits after just coming out of the pit lane. it was clear the backend had no grip. On lap 22 Midzy15 lost the backend and hit the wall, damaging his front wing on the start/finish straight. He was then forced to pit after dropping down to 5th and going into the gravel again. After his pitstop he came out in 9th, just behind his team mate. Midzy15 then retired from the session on lap 27 of 34, ending what could have been a great win for him after starting from pole. AVERAGE SHARPIE and Muellcomic92336 had a great battle on the last lap for 5th place, but due to lag AVERAGE SHARPIE ended up in the wall.

In the end it was Reece360 hd 2 who took the win again, making it three wins from three. Dazfell came home in 2nd place, three second places from three races and JamieOC2004 finished 3rd, his second podium spot of the season. In 4th was Quikor and 5th was Muellcomic92336 after a good race from both of them. in 6th was AVERAGE SHARPIE and OTL DAVEALEX4 was just behind him, followed by MrFish 1986 in 8th. OTL Legger and Ezzie1972 filled p9 and p10 with AshManDjango rounding out the finishers in p11, Midzy15 being the only driver to retire.

FINAL POSITIONS

1st Reece360 hd 2
2nd Dazfell
3rd JamieOC2004
4th Quilkor
5th Muellcomic92336
6th AVERAGE SHARPIE
7th OTL DAVEALEX4
8th MrFish1986
9th OTL Legger
10th ezzie1972
11th AshManDjango
DNF Midzy15

DRIVER REACTIONS

“I played myself in qualifying, I had used the softs on my first run, forgetting I would have have to go again. My final lap was done on used, worn out tires which lost me a lot of time. I then had to start on those same worn tires for the race which is why I got so much wheel spin at the start. but what I lacked in one lap pace, I made up for in race craft. it wasn’t ideal being behind my team mate as i knew how quickly the US would wear out, so in wanted to pass quickly. Unfortunately Dazfell got past at the same time and was right on my tail. I then had a good, clean battle with Midzy for the lead, but I didn’t want to risk my car too much due to my position in the championship. Overall it was a good race for Force India”
Reece360 hd 2

“My qualifying was a strange one, I did a couple of laps on the US and then held back on them to build up pace to qualify on softs, however my soft run ended with me spinning so I decided to put a safe lap on the US to put me 5th on the grid. My start was good not losing any positions, then managing 8 laps on the US. My race setup was good at managing 20 laps on the softs and on 4th position but out of fear of not making it to the end on them i pitted for another set of US however the pit stop was messed up and I ended up on another set of softs instead. Pitting a second time caused me to lose 2 positions but having fresher tires I was catching Muellcomic for 5th place. On the last lap I passed him but still battling however it ended in me crashing due to desync and I came 6th. I want to get top 5 in Australia so I’m looking forward to it. Maybe someone like Midzy can get pole and the win for a change!”
AVERAGE SHARPIE

“Hockenheim, my home grand prix, was going well at the beginning, had great pace in qualifying. but having US at the beginning was only an advantage for 2 laps. Then my strategy went from bad to worse, losing more time falling back to 5th after 2 pitstops switching to softs, but at least held 5th place until the end. Not really the result i wanted though. but still doing everything to secure the lead in the manufacturer’s standings.

Same in Australia, just like in the last races the pole position, as well as winning will be decided between Reece and Dazfell. These guys have crazy pace and they will not back off next time. Australia is not one of my favourite tracks, but my main goal is to stay ahead of OTL DAVEALEX4 to keep Sauber behind”
Muellcomic92336

“Qualifying didn’t go to plan as i could only do 1 lap, then the game froze and my race was going well running 5th and then i spun twice in the stadium section and dropped to last, but after my pit stop i climbed back up to 9th. I love racing Australia but I make silly mistakes at the end of the first sector and touching the grass so I hope i don’t do that in the race. I think both pole and the win will be Reece. I am aiming for 5th but would hope for a bit of rain as that could mess up a few in front”
OTL Legger