From the ups and downs of Mosport to the high banks of Michigan, the Lionheart IndyCar Series rolls on to its last stop before its Indy 500 for the Midwesnt Simulation 200. Round 9 is presented by Midwest Simulations. Owner Scott Rupp is an Iowa native who also is a sponsor for league veteran Dan Geren. Rupp designs and fabricates motion simulation systems. For more information please visit: https://www.facebook.com/MidwestSim/
Last week at Mosport, Adam Blocker dominated from start to finish, only giving up the lead when coming in for pitstops. The Carolina driver barely put a foot wrong, but was kept busy at the tight and twisty Ontario track with lapped traffic almost every lap after some first lap chaos. Dustin Wardlow and Stephen Laarkamp put on a show for second place before the “Candyman” pulled away towards the end. Andrew Kinsella managed to get around Laarkamp for 3rd place, but the rookie was strong throughout the race and served notice of his intention of securing that Rookie of the Year trophy, and the Buttkicker prize that goes with it. James Krahula finished 5th, holding off Justin Weaver in photo finish.
Michigan is a special place for Lionheart. It is where the series had its very first official race. The inaugural event took place July 3rd 2014. So much has changed in the nearly 4 years since that very first race. From humble beginnings the league has grown each and every year. For its first 5 races the Lionheart raced with splits, before moving towards a single roster. The winner/s of the first ever lionheart event was Michael Chinn in the 1st server and Danno Brookins in the 2nd. Several series veterans still remain nearly 4 years and 100+ races later, Joe Hassert, Jesse Vincent, Michael Gray, Ian Adams, Vincent Bluthenthal, Robert Blouin and Jorge Anzaldo. GSRC’s own Amjed Yamin even raced in the Lionheart inaugural event.
Michigan hosted the season opener for the league’s first two seasons before being moved to the middle of the season for season 3, where it has remained ever since. Michigan was also the home of the 3rd All-Star Race which saw Jason Galvin on Pole and Korey Connor come away with the win. It is a track that has made an appearance each and every season in Lionheart and one that will most likely be on the schedule each and every year to come.
Adam Blocker is coming off his 2nd victory of the season climbing 5 spots in the standings, and now sits 8th overall, just 1 point behind Ron Hacker. The Adrenaline team has now won 5 of the 8 races so far this season, with Blocker snagging 2 road course wins and points leader Andrew Kinsella winning on 3 ovals. Kinsella remaining the points leader through the first 8 rounds will be absent for Round 9 and will unfortunately use a drop week in the process. That means that his teammates will be expected to up there oval game if they hope to continue their dominance.
That might not be a problem for the Adrenaline stable though. Last season’s race saw Chris Stofer taking the win over Michael Goodman. Stofer led a race high 41 laps. While 22 of the 34 cars finished on the lead lap. Stofer has traditionally been fast on the big ovals, and the Adrenaline Motorpsorts driver will be looking to get his season back on track. Look for Stofer to be around the front on Wednesday night!
Stephen Laarkamp has been the rookie to beat this season and is coming off an impressive run at Mosport. Finishing 4th and gaining another spot in the standings, now sitting 5th overall only -4 points back from James Krahula. Laarkamp has also been clean this season with just 7 total incs on the year for a 1.00 avg. This talented rookie has been knocking on the door of victory several times this season. If anyone is able to break up the Adrenaline party at the top, it might be Laarkamp. Krahula meanwhile stands to take over the iron man standings with Kinsella missing Michigan. Both drivers sit currently at 845 laps / 1,475.32 miles on the season. This consistent approach has severed Krahula incredibly well and looking toward the second half, could see Krahula moving further up the standings..
Adrenaline continues to pull away in the team standings after another strong running last week. Now +131 points ahead of Synergy it appears the battle is more focused on who will take 2nd in the championship as No Name and Synergy are separated by just 22 points.
Which drivers will carry momentum through Michigan into Indy? The anticipation builds as the league looks ahead to Round 10 for the iRace for Gage Indianapolis 500. The 2nd leg of the 2018 Triple Crown will be ran on Sunday July 15th. But before we get there, the Midwest Simulations 200 will take place Wednesday June 26th at 10:35pm eastern, only on GSRC and iRacing Live.