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Brazil: FTS ends the season with a double points finish at Interlagos

Discussion in 'Formula SimRacing' started by Christian Smirnoff, Nov 8, 2012.

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    Yes, we know, finish is written with only one n. However, when you have the finnish duo of John-Eric Saxen and Mikko Puumalainen, and they finish the Brazilian GP in 7th and 8th places respectively, it's definitely a double points finnish!

    The result of the season finale at Interlagos marked Faster Than Speed's first double point-scoring finish of the season.

    In the World Championship, Mikko Puumalainen replaced Giuseppe Marconi for the final race of the season. In Q1, both Mikko and team mate John-Eric Saxen went through to the Q2 session by setting the 6th and 9th fastest times respectively. It was the first time the team had both cars in Q2 this season. While neither driver was fully happy with their Q2 laps on the race setup, Mikko and John-Eric qualified 7th and 9th on the grid respectively.

    Both drivers made good starts, keeping their starting positions throughout the opening lap. Mikko would soon attack Kostadinov, beginning a tight battle with the pair driving side-by-side for most of lap 3, before Mikko completed the move to move up to 6th. Both drivers deployed 3-stops strategies, showing a solid and consistent pace.

    After the first round of pitstops, Mikko put Baldi under pressure. A first brave attempt from Mikko saw him try to squeeze himself between the NetRex car and the pitwall on the main straight, but was unsuccessful. The battle continued, but a couple of laps later, they unfortunately made contact into the Senna S, with Mikko understeering into the Hungarian. In another display of his sportmanship, Mikko tried to return Baldi the position, but had to resume racing speed and dropped to 9th as the Hungarian had lost further ground due to stalling his engine.

    While Kostadinov jumped John-Eric with fresher tyres during the last round of stops, it was a strong performance from the finnish duo, with John-Eric and Mikko finishing in 7th and 8th places respectively, separed by less than a second at the finish line, scoring the team's first double points finish of the season and 10 valuable championship points. We thank again our friends at Precision Motorsports for allowing Mikko to drive the FTS-P12.

    Faster Than Speed has finished the season 8th on the Constructors' Championship with 59 points, improving its 9th place from 2011 and scoring almost twice last year's points (31 points). John-Eric Saxen, the man who has completed more race laps in the whole field in 2012, was 9th in the Drivers' Championship with 55 points.

    John-Eric Saxen (7th): "This was a good finish to the season, nothing brilliant, but again where I expected to be.
    In Qualifying I had a bit limited preparation. Considering that, getting into Q2 was a nice surprise. In Q2, the race setup did not perform as expected. This is one area I will need to improve on for next year.
    In the race, I managed to keep my position through the first laps after some fighting with Disley. Later on there was a massive queue with Baldi, Kostadinov and Puumalainen, none of which I could overtake, so I decided to do the undercut this time and pit a lap earlier. This worked well at first, as I got past a couple of cars in the pits and later on, Puumalainen and Baldi had their moment, promoting me to sixth.
    In the final two stints I had to focus really hard to keep my position due to running longer stints at the end, which compromised my pace. Kostadinov pitted 2 or 3 laps later which gave him fresh tires with less fuel, making it an easy pass. After some focused driving I managed to keep Mikko behind me to eventually finish 7th.
    This was a good season overall, better than the last two ones, especially in qualifying pace. I wish to thank Faster Than Speed and Christian Smirnoff for letting me drive the whole season in their team as a loan driver. Now my batteries are empty and I can only hope for a new simulator platform next year to regain the same motivation for yet another season."

    Mikko Puumalainen (8th): "Qualifying was pretty much what I expected, could've done slightly better though, P7. In the race, I took a normal start, was able to keep my position and then have a nice battle with Kostadinov on lap 3, going side-by-side for what seemed like the entire lap, finally taking the position. I made a couple of errors after that, losing the position and another to Baldi.
    After the first stop I was able to catch Baldi and we had a hard battle for position. Unfortunately I made a mistake and touched Baldi's rear under braking for Turn 1, causing him to spin. I tried to wait for him, but after letting three cars past and seeing Leppälä and Tali were coming next, I thought he had retired so I continued. Sorry again for Baldi and the NetRex team.
    After that it was a pretty lonely race, I tried to push but the pace wasn't there today. I tried to catch John-Eric in the last stint but wasn't fast enough, so I finished in P8.
    Thanks to Christian Smirnoff for giving me the opportunity to drive, also thanks to the Precision team for allowing me to drive on loan for another team. It was a pretty quiet season for me, maybe next year will have more action, time will tell!"

    With the season now over, we would like to congratulate the season's champions: Bono Huis, Jack Keithley, Petar Brljak and the winning teams, Precision Motorsports and GhostSpeed Racing Team.

    Please stay tuned for news on our 2013 FSR campaign, driver lineups and of course, the FTS-P13 challenger! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@FTS_Racing) and Google+ for the latest news and announcements! Have a nice break and... bring on 2013!

    Faster Than Speed
    Press Release
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