Round 3 of the ADAC Sim Racing Expo Community Trophy saw the drivers remain stateside, as the infamous Watkins Glen circuit welcomed 32 drivers driving Formula 4 machinery around its challenging combination of long straights, elevation changes and technical corners.
It would also see two new race winners being crowned, in what were two very close and action-packed races. Matija Markovic took pole position on his final attempt in qualifying to secure it by a mere 0.087 seconds ahead of Julian Kunze with a 1:46.790, whilst Dörr Esports’ Bence Bánki completed the top three. The session would see the top twenty covered by only 0.752 seconds, with MJR eSports’ Daniel Berka posting a best effort of a 1:47.542.
Markovic would narrowly hold on for the race win in Race 1, pipping Makozi Racing International’s Kodi Nikola Latkovski, who started down in fifth place, by a winning margin of 0.059 seconds after 13 laps. Kunze would take third place, as the German would be battling hard with Bánki in the dying stages of the race, with the latter missing out on the final step of the rostrum by just 0.055 seconds.
Ballas Esports’ Ilia Drovossekov would not only take fifth in the first race but also secured the RIG Fastest Lap Award with a 1:46.834, finishing ahead of chief title rival Kirill Antonov from RUVIS Racing Team. T3 Motorsport’s Leonard Karten was in the thick of the action and would take seventh, ahead of Witchwood’s Ramon Ivanov, Joyce Blöcker and Virtualdrivers by TX3’s Mihai Neg, who completed the top ten.
In the top ten reverse grid race, it would be Drovossekov that would become the fifth different winner so far, having waited to eventually get past Neg for the lead and would not look back. Antonov would be one of the many casualties, having retired due to an incident coming out of the final corner and into the pit lane entry, which saw his left rear wheel get ripped off, abruptly ending his charge.
Markovic would take another solid top three result in a row, finishing well over 1.5 seconds behind Neg in third. However, he would have to fend off Bánki, with it being a photo finish between the pair, with the latter missing out by just 0.025 seconds.
Latkovski was able to secure some solid points again by taking fifth, narrowly edging out Ballas Esports’ Kilian Guijt by 0.075 seconds, ahead of another solid performance by Joyce Blöcker in seventh. Toadline Racing’s Kirill Sokovikov faired better in eighth, with Ares Gaming’s Oliver Haecke and Sebastian Reeh completing the top ten.
Drovossekov becomes the new championship leader with 210 points, 35 ahead of Antonov, followed by Latkovski in third, a further 15 adrift.
The ADAC SimRacingExpo Community Trophy heads to the Red Bull Ring on September 1st for Round 4, so we will see what the public decides on which cars will be used, and who will end up leading the way after the racing in Styria!