Another Podium for Hype Energy eForce India in F1 Esports Event 2
1 November 2018 | Ravenol Marketing
The points continued to roll in for Hype Energy eForce India at last night’s F1 New Balance Esports Pro Series 2nd event at the Gfiniti Esports Arena, with another podium for German driver Marcel Kiefer, and top 10 finishes in all three races. However it was a difficult event for Fabrizio Donoso Delgado who picked up time penalties in both races he competed in, dropping him down the leaderboard from potentially race winning positions.
Race 4 - Paul Ricard, France
Wednesday saw the debut of Hype Energy eForce India’s third driver, Mads Sørensen, who took part in Race 1. However he was unable to compete with his team mate Marcel who started in 4th. On pole was Mercedes Brendon Leigh, who had showed outstanding performance at the last event. He got away cleanly at the start, but after choosing to pit early he came under pressure from Toro Rosso’s Frederik Rasmussen, and after a few tussles, Rasmussen was forced off the track, for which Leigh was given a 5 second time penalty.
Behind him, Marcel was in 5th on the tail of Mercedes’ other driver Daniel Bereznay. Despite having DRS, the tight pack meant drivers ahead also got DRS, so he was unable to get past. Further back, Mads finished in 12th having struggled to find form in his first race.
But the controversy was to come after the race. Mercedes successfully appealed Leigh’s penalty, arguing he was only in that position due to earlier contact with Rasmussen which was not his fault, so he was reinstated to race winner. Being demoted to 2nd, Rasmussen made it clear he was not happy with the decision and vowed to battle harder in Race 2.
Race 4 – Silverstone, UK
True to real form there had been the usual British weather in qualifying, but this didn’t shake up British driver Leigh who again qualified on pole. Alongside him was Hype Energy eForce India’s Fabrizio, with the fired up Rasmussen right behind next to Marcel on the 2nd row.
Leigh was straight off the line, with Fabrizio forced to defend against Rasmussen, whilst behind him Marcel fended off Sauber's Salih Saltunc. As with the real circuit, overtaking was more difficult at Silverstone and the drivers were able to get their elbows out more effectively. But that didn’t stop Fabrizio from tailing Leigh, trying to get a good exit into Lap 3 when DRS was enabled. From there he tailed him into the Hangar Straight and got the job done.
Rasmussen was straight behind Leigh one the Hype Energy eForce India car was out the way, and as the pair battled for 2nd, Fabrizio started slipping away until he made a late break for the pits and locked up at the pit entry, triggering the speed sensors. The result was a 5 second stop-go penalty, to be served as a 15 second penalty after the race. With his race effectively over, Fabrizio came back out in 9th.
Behind the leaders, Marcel was still defending from Saltunc and had lost 2 seconds on them. Without DRS he was eventually overhauled. Meanwhile, Rasmussen pitted to try to get the undercut on Leigh, who was going for a long first stint. With the other drivers having pitted, Fabrizio was up behind Marcel and being the good team player, shielded him from Toro Rosso’s Cem Bolukbasi so he could get back after Saltunc.
Race leader Leigh pitted at the end of Lap 9, coming out just ahead of Rasmussen, but determined not to let the momentum slip, and forced his way up the inside. Meanwhile freed up to chase after Saltunc, Marcel had managed to retake 3rd. Fabrizio then came up behind, putting pressure on him.
Then on the last lap, Leigh saw a chance to get past Rasmussen, who initially left him space but decided shut the door a little too late. There was more blue on silver contact and Rasmussen was forced wide again, allowing Leigh back into the lead. Further back, Saltunc forced his way past both Hype Energy eForce India drivers, but was later deemed to have cut a corner to do so and was given a 3 second penalty. This meant a second podium for our man Marcel!
Race 6 – Spa, Belgium
Fabrizio had once again qualified really well in 3rd, behind Bereznay and Rasmussen. This time Leigh had struggled with qualifying at the tricky Belgian circuit and was back in 5th.
Off the line, Fabrizio was immediately challenged by McLaren Shadow’s Enzo Bonito, but he surged back to retake 3rd. Shortly after, issues with setup proved terminal for Bonito, and he was forced to stop. However Red Bull driver Joni Tormala was quick to pick up the baton and close in on him.
Further back, having qualified in 12th, Marcel was now up into the points places in 10th. However it wasn’t a good race for him and after pitting he dropped down to 13th and was unable to recover the pace of the previous races.
Meanwhile, Fabrizio came into the pits after Rasmussen, but after a fantastic virtual pitstop, he managed to jump him and get out ahead. But neither of them were fast enough to stop Tormala pulling off an overcut and he came out just ahead. Fabrizio challenged him but was unable to get past, then was further frustrated when Leigh also managed to leapfrog him in the pits. Determined, Fabrizio fought back and managed to get past both of his rivals, but was given a 3 second time penalty for his efforts after exceeding track limits multiple times.
This meant a clean run to the finish for Bereznay out in front, whilst behind him Fabrizio battled to stay ahead of Tormala and Leigh so he didn’t drop too many places in the tight chasing pack. But on the last lap Tormala forced his way past into effective 2nd place. Leigh tried to follow but was held off by Fabrizio, opening the door for Rasmussen and Saltunc to get past into effective 3rd and 4th place. After the penalty, Fabrizio dropped down to 7th, but was still able to pick up some points for the team.
So a mixed event for eForce India, with Marcel’s podium and Fabrizio’s penalties. Clearly there is still a lot to come from these two drivers. The next event is a double header set across the 16th and 17th of November. We’re looking forwards to catching up with Marcel, Mads and Fabrizio again then.