Daniel Kiss dominates for the second time in the weekend this time in a MadCape Racing Team car after Jim Parisis has technical problems and retires.
Daniel Kiss for MadCape Racing Team is the winner of the Thrustmaster FSR World Championship Round 1 in Australia!! Kuba Brzezinski finished 2nd on his first ever WC appearance for Origin Front Row Racing and the third spot on the podium was taken by Petar Brljak for Twister Racing.
The poleman, Jim Parisis, after leading the race for a few laps experienced some network issues which caused his disconnection and the first DNF of the season, which was very unlucky for sure.
The early laps saw a small lead group of four drivers develop that incredibly were entirely new or non World Championship drivers. Daniel Kiss the winning Ace Driver from Saturday doing one of three allowed "step up drives"*, Kuba Brzezinski, newly promoted from Pro in 2014, Jeroen Kweekel the Pro Winner from earlier in the afternoon, likewise "stepping up" and then newly promoted 2014 Ace Driver Jonny Simon. Sadly an incident involving Jeroen Kweekel took out Jonny Simon and the battle was left between Kiss and Brzezinski as they built a small gap to the drivers behind.
It was a tight fight for the win as Daniel and Kuba traded blows, virtually mirroring each other's pit stops as they both implemented a 4 stop strategy. The two were seldom separated by more than 4 seconds. Who would switch to the Prime tyre first? It was a case of who would blink first and go for the undercut on a final set of options (thus committing themselves to a slower final stint on Primes) and who would build the foundations for a fast final stint by taking their medicine earlier with prime tyres.
Left with no other way to dent the Kiss pace Brzezinski went for it, options in stint four. He attacked and pulled the gap down to two seconds, took his primes and went hard. Kiss was in front but the gap was dropping as Kiss had to run his worn primes as he awaited the pit window for an options final stint. It was down to 15 seconds. Is it possible? Kiss pits and rejoins behind Brzezinski! The crowd were on their feet, we had a battle royal. Could the Polish speedster hold off Kiss who was now on options?
The answer was no. Kiss got the options working and was threatening even at the end of his out-lap. Skillful defence from Brzezinski held him up briefly but in a classy and respectful showing from both drivers the pass was dealt with into turn one without contact.
The win seemed to be in the bag for Kiss, but the race was not over. Brzezinski now had to defend again from Petar Brljak, attacking on fresh options. He managed to hold him off and the gap was just 0.328 seconds at the end of the 58 laps. All the more impressive as Brljak was P10 on the grid.
Muhammed Patel of England took 4th with a consistent drive from a solid qualifying.
David Greco improved from 11th place on the grid to take 5th by the end of the race.
Enrico Di Loreto had a thrilling battle with John-Eric Saxen as Di Loreto climbed from 14th on the grid to 6th. Meanwhile John-Eric Saxen for Avid Chronic Racing had the best improved position of the day coming from 19th to finish 7th.
In what is becoming a recent trademark for Blair Disley, the GhostSpeed Racing Team driver, he made a measured attack and some elegant overtakes to impress with a climb from 15th on the grid to 8th.
Rounding out the top 10 were Eros Masciulli in 9th and Patrick de Wit the Faster Than Speed driver in 10th.
*-The series rules allow drivers to "step up" for a maximum of 3 rounds above their main series. The rules also mandate that the top 3 drivers from a category must move up to the next category for the following year.
Kiss must be asking himself why he doesn't drive World Championship full time? Kweekel who drives in Pro and also had the pace might be asking himself a similar question. Or at least what is he doing in Pro?
After the race Brzezinski was heard to say that Jonny Simon was underrated as a driver and his pace prior to his DNF had impressed.
The teams will be scrambling to try to unlock the secrets of Twister's setups before next week in Sepang, Malaysia. See you there.