VRCC DTM Round 3

Updated: Feb 17

Words by Rebecca Bland

Round three of the VRCC Group A DTM Series took place on the most romantic day of the year, but there was no love lost between the drivers as the battle in both the drivers and teams standings heated up at Imola. Round two saw the drivers face Brands Hatch with Alex Jamieson and Dan Abbitt the victors in the two races and resulted in Dan and Alex being matched on points in the driver's standings.

Race 1

An exciting start to the evening’s racing at Imola saw a surprise qualifying success from AJR Motorsport’s Charlie Heath who managed to qualify second behind Alex Jamieson, and the Abbitt brothers clawing at his heels. One top name we were missing this week was Andrew Gillone of Ambrex Racing as he didn’t take to the start line for this round.

Another slow start off the line for Jamieson saw him drop down to fifth almost immediately but Charlie Heath took advantage of this and took a commanding lead. Several spins ensued including Dan Abbitt who fell down the placings to thirteenth, eventually working his way back up to fourth. Stu Neale of Three Wheels Racing fell victim to cold tyres and spun off on the first lap, eventually finding his feet and climbing back up to a credible sixth. Meanwhile after his initial off and working his way back through the field, Alex Jamieson, unfortunately, DNF'd after he crashed into the back of a stationary car parked on the grid. Race leader Charlie Heath also spun around Acque Minerale but managed to contain the damage to third place.

With Ben Abbitt maintaining a clear lead, the two AJR Motorsport teammates Alexander Rhodes and Charlie Heath found themselves in a battle for second. There was no love lost between the two teammates and they changed places no less than twice on the last lap, with a final mistake from Charlie leading to Alexander taking second place, with both drivers taking their first podium. Dan Abbitt managed to climb back to fourth, and Two-Tone Motorsport’s Nathan Birch rounded out the top five.

Race 2

Race 2 was only a little less eventful with Ben Abbitt leading from start to finish, proving he’s a force to be reckoned with in this driver's championship. Charlie Heath started in third but fell to last place on the first lap after an incident, and Dan Abbitt spun for the second race in a row dropping from third to ninth, although he eventually worked his way back up to fourth. Luck was not on Stu Neale's side in this round as he had another off and ended up down in tenth from fourth position.

The story of the second race though was Alex Jamieson’s gallant comeback from last place to finish second, only four seconds behind race winner Ben Abbitt. This will prove important in the points race as going into this round, with Alex 60 points at the top of the table and Ben just behind on 50. Rounding out the podium was Alexander Rhodes, who scored his first two podiums. Dan Abbitt finished fourth and Nathan Birch once again finished in fifth for Two-Tone Motorsport.

Results to tenth place

Race 1:

1st – Ben Abbitt (Abbitt Motorsport)

2nd – Alexander Rhodes (AJR Motorsport)

3rd – Charlie Heath (AJR Motorsport)

4th – Dan Abbitt (Abbitt Motorsport)

5th – Nathan Birch (Two-Tone Motorsport)

6th – Stu Neale (Three Wheels Racing)

7th – Roy Grassie (AJR Motorsport)

8th – Nick Isherwood (Independent)

9th – Koen de Groot (Big Logo Racing)

10th – Jari van Binsbergen (Big Logo Racing)

Race 2:

1st – Ben Abbitt (Abbitt Motorsport)

2nd – Alex Jamieson (Ambrex Racing)

3rd – Alexander Rhodes (AJR Motorsport)

4th – Dan Abbitt (Abbitt Motorsport)

5th – Nathan Birch (Two-Tone Motorsport)

6th – Charlie Heath (AJR Motorsport)

7th – Roy Grassie (AJR Motorsport)

8th – Koen de Groot (Big Logo Racing)

9th – Alex Richardson (Flying Tangerine Racing)

10th – Stu Neale (Three Wheels Racing)

About the VRCC:

The VRCC is a community of drivers organising leagues across multiple sim racing platforms including Project Cars 2, Assetto Corsa, and Assetto Corsa Competizione. Races are run throughout the week and are often accompanied by live commentary and broadcasts on various platforms. The community is best known for its Virtual Touring Car Cup, but have also provided race series with Ginettas, MX-5s and Vintage F1 to name a few, alongside occasional stand-alone events. Follow their page on Facebook to find out more, or join in the conversation on Discord.

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