Rear View Mirror 10-16-17
Over the weekend there were upsets, some favorites delivered on their expectations, and there were huge shake-ups in the world of racing. Read on to catch up on everything that happened on track in this edition of Rear View Mirror.
Red Bull Global Rallycross Los Angeles
It has been a year of mostly ups and some downs for Tanner Foust. Foust dominated the race weekend in Los Angeles, but it wasn’t enough to catch his Volkswagen Andretti teammate Scott Speed. Foust and Speed were both fighting to be the first three-time GRC champion, and Speed won.
The GRC Beetles of Speed and Foust were untouchable. They inspired quotes in the Red Bull Powerblock broadcast like, “nobody can challenge a Volkswagen off the line.” Of course Foust and Speed are also at the top of their driving game as well, making for a tough combination to beat.
Coming into the final round, Speed was ahead of Foust by 30 points, and the best Foust could hope for was to dominate and have his teammate completely fail. While Foust won qualifying, every heat, and the final GRC event of 2017, it was only enough to take 11 points out of Speed’s overall lead.
Watch some of the highlights in this video.
Forza was on-hand at Red Bull GRC Los Angeles as well, giving fans a chance to drive Foust’s GRC Beetle among the other 700 cars in Forza Motorsport 7.
Formula Drift Irwindale
Anyone who was watching James Deane over the course of the 2017 Formula Drift season knew that he had the championship locked up tighter that a hairpin curve. Deane was flawless all year in the Worthouse Drift Team S15. He only needed single-car bye run to secure the championship, but he did better than that.
Deane ran unopposed until his only battle of the event in the Great 8 against Odi Bakchis. In that battle, Bakchis caused contact that forced both cars into the inner bank where Deane’s S15 hit the wall. Deane was unable to get his car fixed to compete further. No matter, the result would be third place for Deane and enough points to take the championship.
Worthouse teammate Piotr Wiecek carried on to the very end to win the finale event and capture the Rookie of the Year honors to boot. In the final rounds, he battled some of the best in the business, defeating Kristaps Bluss, Fredric Aasbo, and Dai Yoshihara.
Forza fans also had a chance to show off their own drifting skills in a booth that offered a sweet set up to experience Forza Motorsport 7.
After the final race of the DTM season, the top three positions were only separated by six points. Who would win the championship came down to the final race. When Jamie Green won the race on Saturday he was poised and ready to take on fellow Audi drivers Rene Rast, and Mattias Ekström, as well as BMW driver Mike Rockenfeller on Sunday.
During Sunday’s event, Rast started in second but fell back to fifth. Ekström and Green were sidelined by penalties. Rockenfeller put in a brilliant drive to finish third but it was not enough. Rast battled through a race that had a dangling wire blocking his view, yet finished second behind defending champion Marco Wittman. It was Wittman’s first victory of the year, but rookie Rast took the prize of the championship, his first year in the series.
Watch the highlights from the second race.
Alabama is not known for earthquakes, but when what NASCAR is calling “the big one” hit, the Round of 8 was all shaken up. With just 17 laps to go, the #38 of David Ragan spun and caused a wreck that retired or ruined the race for 16 cars, eight of which were driven by playoff drivers. Martin Truex Jr. later claimed responsibility for causing Ragan’s spin.
Among the casualties were Kyle Busch, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Earnhardt Jr. came out the best of the bunch with an eventual seventh place. Later crashes involving Chase Elliot and Ryan Blaney affected the playoff points as well.
In a final lap pass of Ryan Newman, Brad Keselowski took the win and got a pass into the Round of 8. Keselowski avoided three wrecks in the last 17 laps, and with the help of teammate Joey Logano was able to push past Newman. The race took almost four and a half hours to complete due to incidents.
Watch “the big one” hit:
WEC Round 7
It was supposed to be a six-hour race, but Mother Nature limited it to a rain-soaked foggy mess of four hours 24 minutes and change. There were six safety car periods, one full course yellow, and two red flag stoppages along the way. It made for some incredible imagery and some very challenging driving, and proof that the WEC has some amazing drivers.
Toyota took home a 1-2 on their home track, with the #8 claiming victory and the #7 following. The result keeps the driver’s championship up for grabs. According to the WEC, Toyota had better tire performance that contributed to their win. The #1 Porsche had early contact with the winning Toyota that damaged a dive plane and caused the Porsche LMP to fall back before the nose was replaced.
In GTE LM, The AF Corse #51 collected their third win of the year and it put James Calado and Pier Guidi in the lead of the driver points. Ferrari extended their lead in the manufacturers points chase to 47. The #91 and #92 Porsches filled out the podium. Those points moved them ahead of Ford for second place in the manufacturer title race.
Check out the spray and lack of visibility at Fuji:
Last week Heavy Metal Affliction featured Scott Warner’s amazing 1965 Ford Mustang Production B racecar, a car that was entirely thought through before being built to perfection. Since there were so many details about that build, I never got a chance to mention that Warner – Gamertag captn nasties – is a member of a cool Forza group called 2old4Forza.
The name is ironic, because of course nobody is ever too old for Forza. However, it does reflect the older age group that races regularly together. The group has been together for over ten years. One look at the more than 600-member list will reveal quite a few well-known names from the Forza community.
Many members race with a wheel and pedal setup and full simulation settings, but they encourage anyone who is looking to have fun in Forza to join their group. They offer lessons for the beginner and put on competitive races for all skill levels as well as photo contests and more.
Here is a recent photo contest winner from Shaggy SoCal
Tuff Puppers Photo Contest
Mopar fanatic and Forza fan Tuff Puppers just finished judging a photo contest he sponsored. Every entry won a code for cool Forza gear. Take a look at the second place winning photo from Manual Clutch and check out the post for the top photo and other entries.
I am ready to get my drift on tomorrow in the #TuesdayDrive on Mixer and Twitch. We will be hitting some of the driftable tracks in Forza Motorsport 7 and might even go for a big oval to push my feeble drifting skills to some hopefully spectacular smoky skids and fantastic wrecks.
I’ll also be hitting Rivals as I have a lot of work to do to begin sending love letters back to those of you who have destroyed my times. Also if you liked Scott Warner’s Mustang from HMA, he will be in chat and drifting with me. If you have questions about his car you can ask him during the show. I hope to see you there.
Red Bull GRC photos courtesy of Red Bull Media.