In the meantime, time for a race report…
Qualifying – 10th
I elected to only go out and do a safe lap at the end to get me a few places higher on the grid, but at the end of my lap which was already terrible, I spun and smacked the wall so slammed the anchors to ensure I did not cross the line. So fresh tyres at the start.
Race – 5th
Prepare for a long paragraph… Ok so at the race start I shortshifted to let the guys in front get ahead so I wasn’t in the thick of it because that’s where accidents happen. Picked up a few places and by the end of the lap I was 6th I think. On lap 4 @bradley13 had caught up to me a lap earlier and when we reched turn 9 (i think) he divebombed down the outside at a gap he thought was there, but wasn’t. As my video indicates, my wheels were perfectly straight, I did not turn across your line. (no biggie tho just don’t try and blame me) So I lost out to brad and then went to rejoin and then swerved back off again to avoid spinning @david-a before @sato113 passed me also. Then, 2 laps later at the exit of the final bend, I hit the gravel and span. Was lucky to be able to get it into reverse and save my front wing. So then I was bored until lap 10 when people began to pit. By the end of lap 12 I was P4 I think, and I was about 16 secs ahead of Theo. Then @electrolite pitted and came out about 3 tenths ahead of me at the start of lap 17. He got away quickly and I was meant to pit on lap 16 but I saw that Theo was held up in a fight, and thought “if I can get enough of a gap I can come out in front on tyres that will only have like 10 laps to do” so I pushed a bit harder, but elected to pit on Lap 18 when the gap went from 17.5 secs to 16 in one sector. So fresh options. I emerged behind Theo and @pezlo2013 and just ahead of @shyguy1992 who then passed me through turn 3 while I tried to re-adjust the fuel and kept swerving back to the racing line. Dylan span off ahead and lifted me to 6th. At the end of lap 19/start of lap 20 I had DRS and a fair amount of KERS on shyguy but as I went past and settled onto the racing line he tapped my right rear wheel, meaning I began to slide a bit, I reduced it to a fishtail and regained control just before I went into the gravel. I then stayed behind him for a lap and tried again, down the inside. I made the move stick this time, only to be rammed off at turn 4. So I turned up the fuel in accordance with my strategy and was going to stay behind when at turn 9 I missed my braking zone a bit. I was slowing down as much as I could and avoided contact with shyguy… But then the box thingy happened and he span off. I set about catching Theo. I had 8 and a half laps to catch and pass him, him being 6 seconds ahead. On lap 26 I caught up and at the start of lap 27 I managed to get past Theo, I think I out-braked him into T1 and then used some KERS to ensure I stayed ahead through turn 3. He followed me well, and then at the start of lap 28 he used all his KERS after getting the DRS, and managed to pass me at turn 4! Little did I know I was about to enjoy the best few corners ever… Turns 5 and 6 I followed but was poking around here and there, I caught him a bit more through 7 and 8 and he was defending hard into 9, on the inside. I braked early and tried to use the switchback but failed, Then at turn 10 (or 11, don’t know which it is) he defended hard on the inside again so I tried the switchback again but I misjudged, made him slide and ended up spinning into the wall and losing my front wing. I limped home, not before crossing the line in reverse :P. Great race overall and once again fantastic battle with Theo, we seem to battle a lot haha look forward to racing you all in China.