– Following on from back-to-back Pole Positions that turned into lowly finishes, the Division 4 SimHQ Motorsports squad had their sights set very firmly on having a solid comeback drive. That plan turned out pretty well, actually.
Blazej Myszk was unable quite to milk enough speed from the car to be on the front row (whose cars were 4 thousandths of a second apart), but he was less than half a second behind them and tied for fourth position. Having set his time first, he lined up ahead of the #398 Breslin car.
With everyone having had reminders to just have a simple race, Myszk indeed started sensibly and calmly. Eventually though, some fun came looking for him – at Brooklands, lap after lap. A prototype dive-bombed on lap 15, but couldn’t hold its line and sideswiped him. On lap 16 a GT did something similar, and on lap 17 Blazej recognized the pattern and narrowly avoided another.
There was little other excitement until it came time to swap drivers, two hours into the race. Technical problems meant that nobody was waiting in the garage when Myszk came in, so he was forced to do a third stint! Not a problem, it seemed, and he handed over to Matt Horst with no further issues and with five hours remaining.
Matt had a car that was in good condition and was using a setup he’d put hours into developing. He was therefore more than able to keep the car in a good position while still driving – as instructed – sensibly and carefully. He did, however, see some unexpected action.
He was on the receiving end of a silly move by a lapped car around the outside of Stowe. The #365 Undercover Simracing entry desperately wanted to unlap itself but turned in too sharply, pinching Horst’s nose and sending him for a spin.
Later, the #383 DriveGameSeat Racing Team car, while leading the race, seemed to misjudge whether it should overtake at The Loop. It tried, then tried to back out, but couldn’t do it fast enough. Contact was made and Horst spun again.
Between the two incidents, the scheduled pit stop had happened but without taking new tires, and this decision had pushed the car up into third position. Things were looking very nice for a day of not trying too hard.
With around three hours to go, Horst handed the car to Jason Whited, including about 30 seconds of repairs. Almost before he’d got going though, fun visited him. On his first lap, a late move by another GT caused contact in the chicane before Club (apologies were received mid-race) but there was no time to calm down, as the Breslin car suddenly appeared on the scene and forced itself between the two cars as they came down the home straight side-by-side!
It wasn’t long before talk on the pit wall moved to the idea of keeping Whited in the car to the end of the race. That meant asking him to do a triple-stint just as Myszk had done, but Jason accepted the challenge. Afterwards he cited the middle stint as the really difficult one, and actually enjoyed the challenge of chasing down 5th position in the closing minutes.
In the end he fell short by just seven seconds, and all three drivers left the circuit beating themselves up over small mistakes they’d made which had cost that time. But the truth was that this was exactly the positive, stable race the team had craved and spirits were raised enormously.
Here is the race chart from the Division 4 GTE Group at Silverstone.
The eight points gained are somehow the second-best haul of the season but, crucially, they see the #399 leapfrog several teams in the championship, having been mired at the bottom of a tight group of midfield runners. Now tied for 8th position and with the final race at Le Mans offering double points, more of the same would do very nicely indeed.