Introduction

– The Simhq Motorsports team makes its first appearance in the P1-Gaming 24h Series, but by all means, we are no strangers to this league. Horizon Motorsports has put down roots in this series for many events, with a TRG class win at the Nurburgring 24 Hour as its high point.

Now, Horizon has integrated with Simhq Motorsports, brings a strong five-car, 10 driver line-up to do battle with 45 other entries at the famed Road Atlanta Circuit in Braselton, Georgia USA. The 6 Hours of Road Atlanta awaits.

Our teams include:

GT3 Class

#63 Bentley Continental – Jon Uyan & Blazej Myszk

The P1-Gaming 24h Series - Six Hours of Atlanta GT3 63

#64 Chevrolet Camaro – Jordy Zwiers & Greg Hall

The P1-Gaming 24h Series - Six Hours of Atlanta GT3 64

TRG Class

#62 BMW 125i – Matthew Overton & Bill Sutter

The P1-Gaming 24h Series - Six Hours of Atlanta TRG 62

#65 Chevrolet Cruze – James Andrew & Kyle House

The P1-Gaming 24h Series - Six Hours of Atlanta TRG 65

#66 BMW 125i – Matt Horst & Brian van Beusekom

The P1-Gaming 24h Series - Six Hours of Atlanta TRG 66

Qualifying

The 50-minute session provided ample opportunity to get hot laps in. Jordy and Jon both put down 18 laps!

Jordy was able to claim SMHQ’s first pole in any P1-Gaming race.

In TRG, Matthew and Brian carried a close intrasquad rivalry, with Matthew pipping Brian by four-hundredths of a second!

GT3
#64: Jordy Zwiers – P1 – 1:15.8060
#63 – Jon Uyan – P26 – 1:17.4800

TRG
#62: Matthew Overton – P9 – 1:25.9695
#65: James Andrew – P6 – 1:25.6667
#66 – Brian van Beusekom – P10 – 1:25.9735

Race

The race turned out to be a bit of a struggle for our teams. 50 cars on a 2.54-mile circuit is a bit crowded, you could say.
In the #64, Jordy managed to lead the majority of the first two hours. At that point, Greg was to take over the car. Instead, the #64 was hijacked by a terrorist, who roamed the track unimpeded for 20 minutes before race control was able to bring him in. In the end, the #64 received a DQ.

Jordy commented, “Unfortunately I had the outside lane at the start, I couldn’t defend my position. After some hard racing heading towards turn two, the situation got tight and ended up in the grass, losing two more positions. Time to put the hammer down and regain the lead! Now there didn’t happen much, just steadily in the lead and then it was time for a driver swap… the devil.”

The start

The #63, with Jon and Blazej, were plagued with incidents and lag events. If a team is only allowed so much bad luck, they used it up in this one race. The final result left the team in P20.

From Jon, “This was a storm before the calm already and hoping it was now passed, I needed to settle to a good pace with the big Bentley. Which proved to be quite the challenge, as the Bentley was having cramps thru all sectors’ twisty bits but the straights were fine, even though I was not running low DF!”

In TRG, the #62 of Matthew Overton and Bill Sutter soldiered on throughout the race. There were a few ups and downs, some impacts, as expected with a field of 30+ GT3s all hungry for some TRG meat. P8 was a happy result for the group.
Matthew had positive thoughts in reflection after the race. “Our #62 car came into the race with the expectation that the biggest challenge would be managing traffic coming up from behind and that was the reality on race day. Many drivers were patient, especially in the esses as well as the two right-handers before the back straight, but there was a number who were less so. Fortunately for us, most of our issues were self-generated, with, usually, little effect on others.

The #65 of James Andrew and Kyle House wrapped the race in P9, right on the heels of the #62. The Anglo-American squad showed a great result in Kyle’s first race with the team.

James reflected on the positives and negatives after the race. “After I somehow out-qualified my TRG-class teammates, my first stint was – by my standards – brilliant. I was enjoying the pressure and intensity and my own performance. Then I made my first pit stop and the day went bad.”

TRG cars

The #66 of Brian van Beusekom and Matt Horst brought home the team’s best result, a P5 in class. The team was consistently in the top 5 all day, often sneaking into a podium spot. Unfortunately, a lagging car caused a crash for Matt in the last hour, and the resultant damage dampened any chances of a podium.

Straight from Brian’s mouth, “I had a great time in SHQM #66. Started 10th, which was a little disappointing at first, but I managed to stay out of serious trouble. After a great 4 car fight for 4th to 7th, we ended up 4th after the pit rotation and some bad luck for others. From there it was trying to stay out of trouble and dealing with traffic.”

He continued, “…Towards the end, we were looking at a potential 3rd place but unfortunately, bad luck had to strike us too in the final moments of the race, and we ended 5th. But it’s a 5th that we enjoyed a lot.”

SHQM will return, expecting a stronger result upcoming after quite the rough run for the team. Stronger and smarter, on to the next race, a 12-hour event at a location to be determined. The next race date is March 17th.

Post-Race Comments

Jordy Zwiers – Pole position, what a luck I caught a car to give me a real nice toe at the back straight. My first ever pole in rF2, I was waiting for that for a while! And so close with my mate Shawn, it was tense! The start was a bit odd, to be honest… I started on the outside with P2 right next to my rear bumper and obviously lost pole. I think this needs some rework. To add salt to the wounds I got pushed offtrack, but all good, it’s a 6-hour long race. Slowly but surely climbed my way back up, and finally back up in the lead. Now there didn’t happen much, just steadily in the lead and then it was time for a driver swap… the devil.

I was hoping to finally win my first race in rF2 after being crashed out in VEC when in the lead, but the game thought otherwise, again… Greg got into the car, it showed his name on the live timing and stream, but he wasn’t moving on my screen. Turned out, I also had control over the car? (Greg was on track, I was not moving cuz I thought I didn’t have control, but i didn’t see him drive away or anything ) Not sure what was going on there, so I restarted my PC and eventually after we discovered Greg wasn’t getting recognized he rejoined, getting “pending open session”. Now I tried to join, and got the same message.

Race over, my first ever retirement in sim racing ever Then decided to chill a bit, watch the stream. And all of the sudden I see our Camaro doing laps? Turns out it was AI, but that was a good laugh!

I want to take a moment and thank race control, the race was much better with live stewarding. The races have really progressed! Now, lets hope some drivers do the same, so there’s not a crash in every sector in every single lap. I like that the grid has grown massively compared to when I started here, but unfortunately, the driving standards have gone backward massively thanks to it Maybe an academy you have to pass first is not a bad thing?

Want to congratulate the winners of their respective class, and nice to see another than a Ferrari winning the race. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a Chevy. See you at the next track!

Both classes of cars

James Andrew – It was strange because I had a lot of fun all day even though after the first hour everything I did make our race (and some other teams’) worse.

The live stewarding was excellent. Fast decisions, clearly explained. The sheer amount of traffic was just wonderful. Every corner needed decisions to be made. The driving from most cars was very good – a huge improvement from when I myself told my teammates a few years ago that I did not want to take part in future P1 races. I have no doubt that the stewarding and the race preparation (with the “red zone” being announced) was vital in making sure people were sensible.

After I somehow out-qualified my TRG-class teammates, my first stint was – by my standards – brilliant. I was enjoying the pressure and intensity and my own performance. Then I made my first pit stop and the day went bad. I got a pit lane speeding penalty, lost my rhythm, spun the car, got hit by a GT3, and more. But my worst was still to come.

Later in the race, I lost the car in T5 and somehow ended up rolling backward down the middle of the following straight. As I looked up, three GT3s were heading straight for me. To brake would make things worse, and turning the wheel to try and get off-track would doom someone to be taken out.

I prayed that everyone would go either side of me, but unfortunately, someone hit me straight on (I think a yellow Ferrari). In the smashes and spins that followed, I think that several cars were taken out. If I make a mistake and ruin my race, that is hard enough to deal with, but knowing that my mistake caused so many others to be affected is awful for me. Apologies to anyone involved there.

I crawled back to the pits, staying entirely off the track while telling my teammate to get on the server and finish the race. We did, but we shouldn’t have. That car took a beating on Saturday. I just can’t understand how I could do so well early on then seemingly forget how to control a car!

But it was great fun and P1 is definitely going in the right direction. See you on track (and not on the wall!).

Cars everywhere

Matt Horst – First and most importantly I want to thank the organizers and race stewards for a really fun racing experience.That was the busiest race I have ever done, traffic everywhere all the time it was so much fun.

As for the driving, i saw a lot of GT’s showing a lot of patience with the touring cars, which was supersizing and nice. I had no contact with any car except maybe traded a little paint with one or two touring cars.The one big crash I had that basically ruined our chance for a podium turned out to be a touring car lagging/warping very badly.I had originally thought it was a gt car that hit me.It did seem like there was some kind of crash on every lap, I guess I was lucky this time to stay out of them all.Looking forward to the next race.

Matthew Overton – So, in addition to being thankful for some of the driving out there when I was a big target, I’d like to also thank the P1 organizers for a GREAT race. 50 cars on the track is an enormous amount of work and they added to their load with running live stewards as well as streaming. The reaction to issues during the race was very quick and they worked effectively and fairly in the background on race and admin issues.

Our #62 car came into the race with the expectation that the biggest challenge would be managing traffic coming up from behind and that was the reality on race day. Many drivers were patient, especially in the esses as well as the two right-handers before the back straight, but there was a number who were less so. Fortunately for us, most of our issues were self-generated, with, usually, little effect on others. A notable exception for me was a GT stopped cold just on the crest before the descent to the s/f; he moved a little as I was making my choice left/right and it ended with us both losing bodywork. It was a bad situation for them to be in – and I’m sorry that it ended badly for us both.

It was in all other ways a fun race – I think a real advance over some of the others we have raced (and that progress due to the P1 team and their hard work) and I’m looking forward to the next track.

A fun race, but the start was brutal

Brian van Beusekom – First of all, also huge thanks from me to the organization. It was a great race considering it was 50 cars on a tiny track. Good race control and a good stream as usual.

I had a great time in SHQM #66. Started 10th, which was a little disappointing at first, but I managed to stay out of serious trouble. After a great 4 car fight for 4th to 7th, we ended up 4th after the pit rotation and some bad luck for others. From there it was trying to stay out of trouble and dealing with traffic.

Towards the end, we were looking at a potential 3rd place but unfortunately, bad luck had to strike us too in the final moments of the race, and we ended 5th. But it’s a 5th that we enjoyed a lot

Now on too the P1ST championship, and for those that do not drive there, see you at the next endurance event.

Jon Uyan – About my race (not an attractive picture but here it goes).

Coming to this race a bit unprepared for the “qualifying setup” department, the qualy session started horribly bad. Sitting in the back of the grid after few attempts, had to try few new things and use couple of tips teammate Blazo (Blazej) was giving me over TS. My fourth run improved us to P26. Then I tried additional adjustments of my own and started a 3-lap run as session clock was winding down. First flying lap was no good due to traffic, second flying lap started with a fast first sector; .5 sec up, in sector 2 I saw .7 sec up and I had almost no traffic in front for the rest of the corners. End of back straight, left-right and under the bridge, on my hud’s delta lap time I could see I was up .9 sec and some change and it was a good improvement, coming down the hill checkered flag came out, I took the last corner pretty good and crossed S/F line hoping to see at least a good mid-pack position but my time did not count! Noooooo, why? Was very disappointed with P26, (I think!)

Or not! Because race start was a bit chaotic in mid-pack actually. I saw cars spinning everywhere, first at T1 exit then going to T2 more cars spun right and left. After T2 I was in P16 already. Ok P17, I had to give way to an anxious Z4 thru T3-4. This was a storm before the calm already and hoping it was now passed, I needed to settle to a good pace with the big Bentley.

Which proved to be quite the challenge, as the Bentley was having cramps thru all sectors’ twisty bits but the straights were fine, even though I was not running low DF!. Bentley did not suit this track, it was more obvious in the race. We could have had a chance to get in top 10 maybe if everything was ok and we could keep the consistency but it was not meant to be. Various problems, some penalties, lag issues, delays on driver swaps etc. kept us fluctuating all race long between P15 and P20.

Teammate Blazo had the worst luck when he ended up behind the wall across pits after a lag spike and colliding with another car. Had to find a way around, got back on track, nurse the car around the full lap and spent time in pits for repairs. I am surprised we finished in P20 actually, could’ve been much worse.

Overall our team did ok. With 5 entries and 10 drivers, we occupied 10% of the field, got pole position thanks to Jordy’s brilliant drive, led the race with a ~50 sec margin until AI bug bit us. All the cars except the #64 Camaro finished the race, which was our No.1 goal. Overall we are – as a team – very happy with the success of this race, the server was rock solid, most of the cars finished, very low attrition rate, 26 teams, 50 entries, 188 drivers. Very happy to be part of it!

P1-Gaming 24h Endurance Series