FSR WS: Phillip Puschke Takes Maiden Victory
Shanghai was a race to remember for Ghostspeed driver Phillip Puschke but it didn’t start out that way as qualifying was a very different story.
It started when Precision’s Cyril Werdmuller put in a dominant lap to take pole position away from his team-mate Jack Keithley. Keithley began the race 50 points away from current leader Peter Duivelaar so a Precision 1-2 on the grid looked promising, with Peter in the USA doing some work with SimRaceway. ATR’s Eros Masciulli started the race in 3rd with NetRex driver Rob Van Starkenburg in 4th.
The race start saw Jack Keithley have a fantastic launch taking the lead into turn one, there were no collisions in the midfield and they snaked through the opening corners seemingly with no damage. The field settled into their groups and then the racing began. There were many speculant moves during the opening laps but what was a bigger suprise was the fact that Keithley now had a 3 second lead after just 2 laps racing! With his team-mate doing a thorough job at teaching young Rob Van Starkenburg a thing or two in deffending, it was looking like a great opening stint for the Precision duo.
Starkenburg didn’t have what it took to pass Werdmuller and in the end surrendered his third place to Puschke and dropped down to fourth place. However things went from bad to worse for Van Starkenburg after a spin on lap 11 sent him careering down the field jostling in a fiesty group of drivers who included De Matos and Gosling among various others.
As the first round of pitstops approached, it seemed Jack Keithley found his first stroke of bad luck, after pitting relatively early, the brit found himself in the midst of a raging war between traffic. None more important so than ATR Managements Vecchioni who was side by side with the precision driver on the exit of the final corner, but Jack cut accross to quickly,dragging Vecchioni to the left hand side of the track and slamming him into the barrier. Whilst Keithley escaped seemingly harm free, he itallian was not so lucky and had to make an extra pitstop for repairs.
There wasn’t just fireworks at the front of the field either, on lap 22 Ben Tusting made contact with Vouri who spun out from 15th place losing two positions and rejoining in 17th.
After the second pit stop it seemed that out of nowhere Ghostspeed driver Phillip Puschke had gained a huge advantage! The lead was down to just 2.3 seconds with around 15 laps left.
Another battle which kept the audience on the edge of their seats was that of GT-Omega man Pedro Melin and Rob Van Starkenberg, it was a high octane fight with constant position switches and side by side action, but all eyes were firmly planted on the front two.
But it wasn’t to be Precisions day, Jack Keithley suffered a technical problem causing himself to spin out and seemingly giving the lead over to Puschke who had brought the gap down to just over a second! Puschke went on to take the chequered flag and take his maiden victory in Formula Sim Racing!
The battle between Melim and Van Starkenberg raged on until the final lap when the two had an epic side by side battle through the opening corners but it was the experience of Pedro Melim which earnt him his 8th place result.
3rd place was the polesitter Cyril Werdmuller making it a double podium for Precision Motorsport and fourth place was Ivar Kalamees who drove a solid race in his GT-Omega. Patel rounded ou the top 5 in his twister followed by a great result by Eros Masciulli in 6th postion. Eduard Mallorqui crossed the line in 8th place ahead of the last lap battlers.
In terms of the championship, Peter Duivelaar still has a gap over Keithley but only by 10 points! Precision are now in firm control of the constructors title and will be looking forward to Valencia in 2 weeks time.
You can catch all the action live FSR TV powered by SimRace.TV on May 20th and you wont want to miss it!
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