Manage Your Pace is a great iRacing league that provides fantastic racing. Featuring their F3 race series, we have the race reports for Red Bull Ring.
Manage Your Pace Season 2 Round 3 of the F3 series in iRacing took place in the stunning Austrian mountains at the Red Bull Ring where #9 Julius Fahlbusch hoped to increase his already sizeable championship lead over the chasing pack.
All drivers were looking to make an impression in the first race of the season to be broadcasted with commentary from the excellent Tim Cox.
Above is a video of the highlights, and full race reports in detail below. Be sure to check out and support Manage your Pace.
The drivers took to the track for qualifying and #56 Jules Attivissimo set the early pace, closely followed by the other championship contenders #75 Linus Areng and #13 Ruben Laso. Fahlbusch briefly took provisional pole as he and Attivissimo swapped best laps.
Attivissimo would eventually win the qualifying battle with a 1:24.347, just 0.05s ahead of Fahlbusch with Laso and #90 Sebastian Rischmann putting their cars on the 2nd row.
Attivissimo had a clean getaway from pole and took a defensive line on the inside into turn 1 as the drivers behind all made it cleanly through the first turn and onto the long straight where drivers knew they could capitalise on the draft into the difficult turn 3.
At the front Fahlbusch used his better exit out of the first turn to get alongside Attivissimo into turn 3, keeping his car on the inside but was unable to keep ahead as Attivissimo’s better exit from the outside gave him a clear, but narrow, lead.
As the remainder of the field made it cleanly through turn 3, despite a scary moment for #40 Camden Kraft who brilliantly held a huge slide, the drivers continued to jostle for position into the infield section. Areng was able to overtake championship rival Laso for 4th behind Rischmann with a brilliant move around the outside of turn 4 that gave him the inside line into turn 6.
Turn 6 saw the first incident of lap 1 as #8 Jeremy P Cooper spun on entry but was lucky to avoid any contact and continue at the back of the field, hoping to show his evident pace and work his way up the field. Cooper’s job would be made much easier as an initially calm lap 1 ended with a potentially pivotal moment in the championship battle.
As Attivissimo opened a small gap at the front, Fahlbusch was under pressure from Rischmann very close behind into the fast final 2 turns. On the exit of the final turn Fahlbusch slightly lost the rear and over-corrected the car sending him into the outside wall and destroying the car.
Just behind Fahlbusch’s incident, several drivers were caught out by the penultimate turn. #21 Olger Mile span and luckily stopped short of the wall while Kraft also spun leaving #6 Joris Dek with nowhere to go, launching his car into the air and ending his race upside down.
Lap 2 also had drama at turn 4 when #99 Graeme Lynch spun and ended up stationary in the middle of the track. The drivers behind were unsighted and #22 Philip Fletcher lost his front wing when he was unable to avoid Lynch.
With such a close field #77 Bryan Spaan, #7 Danny Bate and #4 Jack Williams were lucky to very narrowly avoid Lynch’s stricken car but behind them, season 1 veteran, #707 Frederique Rijsdijk also collided with Lynch, sending Lynch’s car then into the path of Mile, who was lucky to escape without major damage.
The incidents had spread the field out slightly with Attivissimo impressively pulling out a gap from a very close battle for 2nd between Rischmann, Areng and Laso that would rage on for a number of laps.
Behind the top 4 a race long battle was brewing with #96 Timothy Southern chasing down #5 Aidan Lucas, Lucas returning after missing Round 2. Southern attempted an overtake into Turn 6 on lap 6 but Lucas was able to hold on to 5th.
Cooper was working his way back up the field and after a short battle was able to overtake Spaan to move himself into 9th position and limit the damage to his AM championship lead.
Areng was able to overtake Laso for 3rd on lap 7 after previously losing the position when he exceeded track limits at the last turn and receiving a slow down penalty.
This allowed Rischmann to focus on closing the gap to 1st but Attivissimo was able to slightly extend the gap and looked set to secure the victory in race 1. Areng had closed back up to Rischmann by the final laps and was within range to use the draft to get close.
Entering the final lap Areng was pressuring Rischmann and was able to get alongside on the outside of Turn 6. With the situation complicated by a backmarker Rischmann slightly drifted wide when braking on the limit and made contact with Areng, sending him into the backmarker and allowing Rischmann to secure 2nd place and Laso to take 3rd.
After a race long battle, Southern overtook Lucas with a lap to go and was able to bring the car home in an impressive 5th, only 2 tenths of a second ahead of Lucas at the finish line.
The top 10 was rounded out by #84 Alex Lewis in 7th and Bate in 8th, both having relatively lonely races after the first laps. Cooper completed a solid recovery to finish 9th ahead of Spaan in 10th.
After Fahlbusch’s low scoring race, Laso had closed the championship gap to just 11 points, with Attivissimo now in 3rd, jumping ahead of Areng.
Cooper’s lead in the AM championship was reduced to 22 points.
A fantastic getaway and turn 1 from Attivissimo at the start of race 2 gave a glimpse of what was to come as he held a comfortable lead into turn 2 on lap 1. A gap that wouldn’t close for the rest of the race as he would go on to a comfortable victory. There was still excitement to be had behind, however.
With the whole field again getting through turn 1 cleanly, the drivers looked to use the draft to make up places into turn 2. Entering turn 2 3-wide, and looking to brake late to gain an advantage, Fletcher was on the inside of Dek and Mile but made contact with Kraft ahead, spinning him and in the resulting crash, Dek was also turned around as drivers behind picked their way through the stationary cars.
After Rischmann went slightly wide at Turn 6, Areng managed to take 2nd place while further back, Jack Williams caused a scare for drivers immediately behind with a spin. Luckily no other drivers were caught up in Williams’ incident and he was able to continue with no damage.
Heading into lap 2, there was another potentially huge moment for the championship standings as Areng lost control on the exit of Turn 1 and hitting the wall. Areng was able to continue to the pits but his race was over.
In a slightly less damaging copy of Areng’s incident, Lucas also span on the exit of turn 1 while attempting to overtake his team mate Bate. Fahlbusch had managed to enter lap 2 in 10th after starting 15th and avoiding incidents on the first lap. Areng and Lucas’ spins moved him up to 8th and put him in a great position to recover points.
In a battle for 13th on lap 2, a close group of Fletcher, Rijsdijk and #15 Liam Williams, who missed the first race of the round, were joined by the recovering Lucas. Fletcher led the group into turn 6 but was hit from behind by Rijsdijk, with both ending in the gravel and signalled the end of Fletcher’s race 2.
Fahlbusch was continuing his charge up the field and overtook Lewis for 7th entering lap 3 and was able to quickly close down Bate for 6th a lap later.
While defending his 2nd place position hard from Laso, Rischmann showed his frustration at a backmarker with an expletive laden radio message, but he was able to hold on to 2nd with Laso dropping back into the clutches of Southern and Cooper who were battling hard in their AM championship battle.
Laso was overtaken by Southern at Turn 4 and Cooper was also able to take advantage into the next corners to drop Laso further back into 5th. Laso counter-attacked immediately on Cooper and was able to retake 4th swiftly.
There was exciting racing to be found throughout the field with a 4 car train battling for 3rd, and now including Fahlbusch, who was able to easily dispatch Cooper and take 5th on lap 5. Later that lap Southern lost control of his car, losing him a number of places and dropping him into an intense battle between Bate and Lewis.
Mile, Liam Williams and Dek were locked in a fight for 12th with Williams attempting a risky overtake on the outside of the penultimate corner on Mile. Both drivers managed to make it side by side through the final two corners with Williams coming out on top but Dek was close behind with a good exit onto the start/finish straight but Mile was able to hold off the challenge into Turn 1.
On lap 6 Southern was looking to regain the positions he lost earlier and looked to overtake Bate into Turn 1, getting a bad exit and putting him into the sights of Lewis behind. With fantastic close racing between them, Southern was unable to keep hold 7th and had allowed Botfield and Spaan to close the gap behind.
Botfield was able to get on the inside of the final two turns and made an impressive move stick and dropping Southern straight into the clutches of Spaan. Spaan was able to overtake into turn 1 on lap 7 and Southern spun on the exit of the turn, dropping him further down the order.
Mile and Dek were still locked together but had a collision which would be reviewed by the stewards at Turn 6, with Mile ending up in the gravel and losing a couple of spots from 13th.
Heading into the final few laps, Attivissimo and Rischmann looked to have secured the top 2 positions again but drivers behind were still looking to gain positions.
Fahlbusch was hunting down Laso for 3rd and close battles were raging between Cooper and Bate for 5th and Spaan and Botfield for 8th in a battle that had lasted the whole race. On lap 8 Spaan was able to get past Botfield with his third attempt of the lap into turn 4 after failing to overtake with attempts at turns 1 and 2.
Bate attempted an overtake on Cooper on the inside of Turn 6 but Cooper held position and the lost time for both drivers allowed Lewis behind to close the gap, ending up right behind Bate heading into lap 9.
By the start of the 9th lap, Fahlbusch had closed the gap to Laso and attempted an overtake into Turn 4, but Laso was able to hold him off for the rest of the lap and hoped to survive the final two laps of the race and close the gap in the championship to Fahlbusch even further.
Behind them, Cooper had pulled a small gap on Bate, who had fended off an attack from Lewis and pulled a small gap for himself heading into the final lap. Attivissimo entered the final lap with a comfortable lead and would take the victory ahead of Rischmann, taking another 2nd place, but the battle for 3rd would go down to the wire.
With an excellent exit of turn 1, Fahlbusch took the outside line into turn 3. Holding his car on the outside of Laso he got a better exit and was able to clear Laso on the following straight and immediately took a defensive line into turn 6.
Despite pressure from Laso, Fahlbusch took 3rd following a great recovery drive. Cooper took advantage of the battle behind him to take 5th place, the highest places AM driver. Bate resisted the pressure applied by Lewis on the final lap to beat him to 6th by less than a tenth.
Following a spin for Spaan on lap 10, where he hit the wall after losing control at turn 3, Botfield was able to take a solid 8th place despite Lucas behind in 9th narrowing the gap on the final lap. Lucas had attempted an overtake at turn 6 but Botfield held the speed on the outside to fend off his teammate.
Another Screw Loose Racing driver, Liam Williams rounded out the top 10 after a clean recovery from 20th on the grid. Attivissimo’s 2nd victory of the day allowed him to take 2nd place in the championship, just a point ahead of Laso and narrowing the gap to Fahlbusch to only 12 points.
The final race of the day would see most of the championship contenders start at the front, but with Areng down in 18th with hopes of using his pace to climb up the order and keep in touch with the other championship hopefuls.
Attivissimo showed his calmness with another good getaway from pole but Rischmann’s big weakness again showed itself with an awful start from 2nd place, spinning his tyres and losing 7 places on the short run to turn 1.
Towards the back of the field Dek was caught out by early braking ahead into turn 1 and had to take to the inside of the track, bouncing over the turn 1 kerb and into Liam Williams, while outside them Spaan and Mile also made contact in the very tight turn 1 battles. All the drivers were able to escape with no incidents although Dek dropped to the back of the field on the long straight following the corner.
Cooper looked to take 3rd place from Laso at turn 3 and give himself hopes of a podium but wne ttoo wide on the exit, touching the kerbs, unsettling the car and spinning to the infield. Cooper avoided the wall but had to wait for the field to pass before rejoining. Botfield was another spinner on the cold lap 1 tyres, spinning from 9th into the gravel, but was also able to rejoin.
There was drama at the final section on lap 1 as both Spaan and Lynch span exiting turn 9. Spaan’s car was on a dangerous trajectory crossing the racing line of the last turn and Fletcher also span as he was caught out by Spaan’s out of control car crossing his path ahead.
With the top 10 slightly spaced out, apart from Rischmann regaining a spot from Lewis and Southern spinning at turn 1, the lap 2 action was found towards the back of the field with Jack Williams, Mile and Kraft battling. Mile was able to hold off the attack from Williams and pass Kraft shortly after for 11th.
Jack Williams was made a slight mistake misjudging the braking point of Kraft ahead into turn 1 on lap 3, spinning and narrowly avoiding Dek close behind. Cooper was the next car on the scene and successfully avoided Williams but was unfortunate to spin in the process of doing so, as did Lynch behind him. Luckily all the drivers involved were able to continue but the field had now spread out, but with several drivers out of position.
Areng was hunting down Liam Williams for 8th place heading into lap 3 and was able to easily take the spot despite some resistance from Williams and set off to join a battle forming ahead for 4th between Bate, Lucas, Lewis and Rischmann, four drivers who had been in the top 10 in the previous two races.
Lucas had taken 4th into turn 1 and the battle between the four was becoming intense but with obvious respect between the drivers. At the front Fahlbusch was closing the lead Attivissimo had pulled out in the first laps, closely followed by Laso, but the top three were well clear of the chasing pack by the start of the 4th lap as Areng joined the pack fighting for 4th place and overtook Lewis to take 7th and put him behind his three Screw Loose Racing teammates who continued battling hard.
Rischmann looked like he might be able to stretch the following pack until Lucas attempted an overtake, allowing Bate and Areng behind to close up, but Rischmann held on to 4th and managed to pull out a small gap as Areng, Bate and Lucas went three wide behind into the fast turn 9.
All three made it through cleanly but Rischmann now had a small gap ahead of Bate. On lap 6 Areng was able to overtake Bate after both had gone side-by-side for a few corners. Areng was then able to show his pace and set off in chase of Richmmann who now had a couple of seconds gap.
By lap 6, Fahlbusch was in position to attack Attivissimo, attempting to overtake into turn 3 but Attivissimo held the position with Laso lurking behind to take advantage of any mishaps. Fahlbusch attacked in turn 1 on lap 7, also allowing Laso to get close, and took the outside line into turn 3 where Attivissimo braked late on the inside.
This allowed Fahlbusch to cut back to take the inside line into turn 4 where he managed to secure the lead. With Lucas defending from Lewis and Williams behind, Bate was able to settle into a gap of his own in 6th.
Williams was able to take advantage of Lucas and Lewis’ battle ahead to get a good run out of the first corner, managing to overtake Lucas into turn 3 and Lewis into turn 4 on the 8th lap. Williams was a couple of seconds behind Bate but, with clear track now ahead, aimed to put in some fast laps to apply some pressure as Lucas and Lewis continued battling.
Lucas overtook Lewis for 8th on lap 9 with a brave move on the inside of turn 9 but their race long battle wasn’t over as Lewis retook 8th a few corners later. However, at turn 4 on lap 10 Lucas made slight contact with the rear of Lewis’ car in the braking zone of turn 4, sending him into the gravel as Lucas continued on in a lonely 8th position. Lewis was able to rejoin without losing a spot but came back on track just ahead of Mile.
Heading into the final lap of the day Fahlbusch had a small but clear lead over Attivissimo and Laso in 3rd, and the top 3 would remain unchanged, Fahlbusch grabbing the win and denying Attivissimo the 100% record for the round.
Behind the podium, Areng had caught Rischmann and attempted a last lap overtake at turn 4, unfortunately running out of room on the outside and running off track, releasing Rischmann to take 4th place and leaving Areng 5th after another stellar recovery drive.
Bate took another 6th place despite the gap reducing for the final laps to Liam Williams behind. Williams had managed to get within 0.5s by the finish line and was left wishing for another couple of laps. Lucas took 8th as Lewis retained 9th ahead of Mile in 10th.
At the end of race 3, Fahlbusch, with 184 points, still had a solid lead in the championship of 15 points over Attivissimo on 169 points and Laso in 3rd with 166 points. After another round where he showed great pace but was hampered by one poor race, Areng stayed 4th on 138 points but with the gap to those ahead now looking difficult to recover from with only two rounds left.
The AM championship runaway leader, Cooper, sits in 5th overall with 131 points, ahead of a group of 4 drivers separated by 4 points, headed by Liam Williams on 102 points. Lewis sits 7th overall after a great round with 101 points, just ahead of Rischmann, despite him missing round 1, on 100 points, just 2 points ahead of Southern in 9th.
There was another big gap to Bate in 10th place after round 3 with 78 points, but Bate is another driver with only 2 rounds of points to his name so he will be looking to rise up the table in the next races.
For round 4 Manage Your Pace season 2 heads to Suzuka, a true driver’s favourite.