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With 12 groups entered, together with Mercedes-AMG Petronas, Pink Bull Racing Esports, Williams Esports and Romain Grosjean’s R8G Esports, the genre-leading entry checklist visited a digital Spa-Francorchamps circuit in 24 similar 800bhp V10-powered single-seaters.
2021 championship runner-up Rietveld set the preliminary tempo with a 1:41.243 benchmark with 5 minutes full.
With simply over one minute left, a number of rivals set their finest instances. Wolves GR Esports’ driver Adam Maguire set a time simply zero.zero13s behind Rietveld, adopted by Marcell Csincsik simply zero.025s additional again and Huis additionally inside zero.1s of pole place in fourth.
Collection debutant, and two-time F1 Esports Series Pro champion, Jarno Opmeer, certified in fifth. Regardless of their finest efforts, nobody might topple the 2022 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual victor who delivered the quickest time at Spa two years in a row.
Off the road at first of the 60-minute race, Csincsik had the very best launch, solely to be borked by pole-sitter Rietveld. This allowed Maguire to run across the exterior of the R8G driver at La Supply and sit on the story of the chief.
In the meantime, additional again within the pack, Michi Hoyer was squeezed by Liam de Waal onto the grass however was capable of regather management. Nevertheless, he then speared into the aspect of Collin Spork on the first nook. All vehicles have been fortunately capable of proceed, however Hoyer acquired a 10-second post-race time penalty.
On the third lap, reigning champion Huis began to march ahead in what would in the end be an embattled race, nipping previous Csincsik at Malmedy. Crew-mate to the chief, Kevin Siggy, moved ahead too, overtaking Jernej Simončič for sixth earlier than Les Combes. Crew Fordzilla driver Nuno Pinto who certified 24th then span at Double Gauche, smashing into the barrier and retirement.
Then, catastrophe for the pre-season favorite. With 10-minutes full, Huis began falling again, dropping third to Csincsik on the exit of La Supply, then operating extensive at Bruxelles and dropping behind Siggy. Earlier than lengthy, he dropped behind Simončič and the 2 BS+Competitors drivers of Muhammed Patel and Ibraheem Khan.
Huis’ Mercedes-AMG teammate Opmeer then retired with a technical problem. However, with 44 minutes left, Huis began his fightback from Mercedes-AMG’s nadir, getting by Khan in an aggressive transfer on the Chicane.
Csincsik was on hearth at this level, and nearing the midway mark he scythed previous Maguire for second and began consuming into Rietveld’s lead with consummate ease. It took just one lap for the Hungarian driver to meet up with the Dutch race chief, and he introduced Maguire with him.
With 28 of the 60 minutes left, Simončič was the primary to enter the pitlane alongside six different entrants to finish their obligatory go to.
On the subsequent lap, the three on the entrance all pitted at precisely the identical time. Huis adopted, however Siggy stayed out for a lap longer. After it had all shaken out, Huis had jumped Siggy and Reitveld now had a three-second lead.
Then issues obtained contentious as Huis tried to go across the exterior of Maguire for third at Les Combes. The 2 rubbed wheels via the precise after which once more via the left, with the Wolves driver half-spinning and dropping to ninth.
Within the kerfuffle, Siggy squeezed onto the rostrum after which chipped away at Csincsik in second. The 2022 DTM Esports champion then drafted by to make it a Crew Redline first and second with 10 minutes left.
As the ultimate laps approached, the battle for third was the primary focus, with Huis as soon as once more banging wheels at Les Combes, this time with Csincsik. The positions remained the identical. One lap later, Huis used the push-to-pass system for the primary time within the race to fly by the R8G driver in a straight line.
From there, the Crew Redline – the staff this 12 months supported by Max Verstappen – managed the ultimate two laps to take a assured win, Rietveld forward of Siggy.
For the primary time in System Professional Collection historical past, Huis and Mercedes-AMG had been bested, however nonetheless salvaged third.
System Professional Collection 2022, Race 1, Spa-Francorchamps, outcomes
- Jeffrey Rietveld – Crew Redline – 35 laps
- Kevin Siggy – Crew Redline +zero.037
- Bono Huis – Mercedes-AMG Petronas Esports Crew +three.614
- Marcell Csincsik – R8G Esports +6.532
- Jernej Simončič – Burst Esport +10.527
- Muhammed Patel – BS+ Competitors +15.346
- Erhan Jajovski – R8G Esports +16.415
- Petar Brljak – Williams Esports +17.839
- Adam Maguire – Wolves GR Esports +18.326
- Ibraheem Khan – BS+ Competitors +19.121