The second round of the iRacing World Championship Grand Prix Series was held at Phillip Island. The action started straight away with Mitchell DeJong beating Martin Krönke to pole position, Rasmussen would start alongside DeJong, with Krönke all the way back in fifth place for round two.

The start saw no contact, but it did see Frederik Rasmussen and Joshua K Rogers go off on the first lap. This left Huttu in third and Krönke in fourth. Then on lap 5 Kazuki Oomishima spun, then a corner later made contact with Mortiz Lohner who was able to carry on, but Oomishima collected his teammate and an Orion Race Team car, ending his race early. As the battle for second position continued DeJong was able to build a gap to Martti Pietilä. Ten laps in Huttu was finally able to get past Pietilä on the main straight, leaving Krönke just behind his teammate. Then towards the end of the lap FA Racing G2 Logitech G’s day got worse when Isaac Price spun on the exit of Siberia, leaving the Brit in 31st place. At the start of lap eleven Krönke made it past Martti Pietilä, putting the defending world champion in third place.

The 35 car strong field racing into turn one of the Phillip Island Circuit in Australia

 

Fifteen laps into the race Aleksi Uusi-Jaakkola went for a move down the inside of Martti Pietilä coming into Lukey Heights, Aleksi made contact with Pietilä’s side pod, sending him into the gravel trap and down the order to eleventh, he came in to the pits at the end of the next lap to retire from the race early. At the end of lap 16 Krönke, Uusi-Jaakkola, Jamie Fluke and Peter Berryman came in to take their pitstops, almost confirming that they were on a three stop strategy. All three of the drivers came out into clean air, which left them to set some quick laps to possibly gain some positions using the under-cut. Olli Pahkala, Mack Bakkum and Antoine Higelin came in to stop a lap later to cover the other drivers moves to stop. After the stops Krönke had gained 1.5 seconds on Gregor Huttu, meaning that him and DeJong would most likely have to stick to the two stop strategy to have any chance of beating Krönke to the chequered flag at the end of the 69th lap.

At the end of lap 20 Dejong and Huttu came in to pit, meaning that they were committing to the three stop to be able to cover Krönke and Uusi-Jaakkola. On lap 24 Mitchell DeJong overtook Uusi-Jaakkola for second place at Honda corner. 28 laps into the race fan favourite Olli Pahkala crashed out of the race exiting Siberia, he said after the race that he had “incredible stutters after 20 laps,” as many people know Olli runs in VR and stutters in VR make it almost impossible to drive and sometimes making the driver sick. Five laps later Krönke came in to change tyres, just a lap after he was past by Huttu on the main straight, this meant that Martin was defiantly on the three stop strategy. On lap 42 Huttu came in for his final stop of the race, meaning that he was on a two stop strategy. Five laps later DeJong made his final stop, he came out behind Huttu, meaning that DeJong would have to play chase if he wanted to win round two.

 

With eighteen laps to go Krönke came in for his last stop of the race, now he had to chase down Huttu and DeJong to make history and get 15 wins in a row. As the laps ticked by DeJong was getting closer and closer to Huttu, just waiting for the right time to make the move for the win whilst Krönke was catching the pair seen tenths a lap.

The controversial incident between Huttu snd DeJong with five laps to go at Honda corner

 

At turn four, with five laps to go, DeJong went for a move in the braking zone, he was swerving trying to pull a dummy move off on Huttu, but, Gregors reaction was to brake early. Because both of the drivers were on old tires there was not much grip to re-adjust to avoid contact. This caused Mitchell to hit Huttu’s side pod, sending both of them off of the racing circuit. DeJong came back onto the circuit first which meant that it would be even harder to stop Coanda from getting the most wins in a row by any team in the iWCGPS.

DeJong celebrating his first win in Coanda colours in the iWCGPS

 

So that was it, Huttu was not able to catch DeJong to take the win, Krönke has finally been beaten, the Redline cars had shown pace, now there are three drivers that are in the fight for the championship. Fighting for a championship that can only get even more exciting.

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