Van Der Geest captures hairline finishto clinch class title in Barcelona Catalunya Multiclass

Image by Alex Freitas
Nice battle all the way!

Freitas controls top spot most laps in class for win

Barcelona Catalunya Multiclass
ROUND 8
17 Dec 2016
PREVIOUS

17 Dec 2016 — A narrow 0.284 seconds separated John Van Der Geest ahead of Carl Middleton at the checkered flag for Van Der Geest to take second place in the WEP1 class and clinch the series championship in the Barcelona Catalunya Multiclass in the eighth and final round of the World Endurance Championship series.

Van Der Geest swapped leads multiple rounds with Ville Hartikainen in a prolonged fight for second starting early on, fighting over a stretch of 48 laps. Van Der Geest spent the majority pursuing Hartikainen after engaging him on the first lap. In the end Van Der Geest settled into second through attrition the 13 laps running to the checkered flag, holding off Middleton by the narrow margin at the line.

The WEP1 class championship was clinched this final round by Van Der Geest with his second-place run. Van Der Geest took the victory in four of his seven starts, leading 244 of 489 laps total.

Alex Freitas raced at the front of the WEP2 field most of all drivers, leading 33 of 55 laps on a run to first place.

Barrett Erickson passed through more than half the field from 11th on the starting grid to third place in the WEGTE class at the finish line.

Fahn Thomas held the WEGTE class lead for 20 laps in a run to first place.

Freitas traded positions back and forth with Mike Erickson in a lengthy and determined battle for the race lead from the middle stages, running within a turn of each other over a span of 55 laps. Freitas spent nearly equal parts leading Erickson after catching and passing him on lap 18. Driving the Acura ARX 03, Freitas fended off an extended attack by Erickson midway through, staying just an apex ahead of him over an unbroken run of five laps. After losing the spot on lap 23, Freitas passed Erickson for the second time and into first place on lap 28, and defended it against pressure by Erickson another 27 laps toward the finish.

Freitas finished the series second in the WEP2 class standings. Freitas made seven starts and led 190 of his 382 laps while taking the win four times.

Erickson spent nearly equal parts of 25 laps total leading Ronan Smedeman after challenging and passing him on lap 30, coming from as many as six positions back. Erickson passed Smedeman and into third place on lap 30, and kept it the remaining 21 laps to the checkered flag.

Erickson finished the series second in the WEGTE class standings. Erickson made seven starts and finished as high as second.

Thomas swapped leads multiple rounds with Martin Buchan in a long and tense battle for the race lead from the beginning, running within a scuff of each other over a stretch of 52 laps. Driving the Ferrari 458 GTE, Thomas spent nearly equal parts leading Buchan after being engaged by him on the first lap. Thomas fended off an extended attack by Buchan in the middle stages, staying just a straightaway ahead of him over a continuous run of 16 laps. After losing the spot on lap 46, Thomas got around Buchan for the second time and into first place on lap 50, and kept it the remaining couple laps to the conclusion.

Thomas finished the series in front of the WEGTE class standings. Thomas made seven starts and led 234 of his 369 laps while taking the victory a half-dozen times.

World Endurance Championship series finished its season after eight rounds spanning four months. A total of 59 drivers competed for points in the multiclass championships.

John Van Der Geest won the WEP1 class championship in a tight campaign over Tobias Mueller, separated by just a handful of finishing positions in the end. Van Der Geest led 244 laps and took four victories in seven races. Ken Jagger, Gergely Kovács, and Joao Botelho De Sousa finished out the Top 5.

Mike Erickson won the WEP2 class championship in a tight campaign over Alex Freitas, separated by just a handful of grid positions in the end. Erickson led 148 laps and took three wins in eight races. Ramon Llupart, Porfirio Dias Santos, and Darien Bailey finished out the Top 5.

Fahn Thomas won the WEGTE class championship, leading 234 laps and taking six victories in seven races. Barrett Erickson, Mark Carty, Jerry Chen, and Gilles Lalonde rounded out the Top 5.

Ville Hartikainen raced at the front of the WEP1 field most of all drivers, leading 34 of 59 laps on a run to first place.

Hartikainen traded positions back and forth with Carl Middleton in a drawn-out fight for the race lead from the beginning, battling over a range of 33 laps. Hartikainen drove nearly equal parts leading Middleton after being caught by him on the first lap. After losing the spot on lap 34, Hartikainen passed Middleton for the second time and into first place on lap 47, and controlled it the remaining dozen laps to the conclusion.

Hartikainen finished the series sixth in the WEP1 class standings. He made one start and led 34 of his 59 laps raced while taking the victory once.

Making his 20th start at Barcelona Catalunya, Mark Carty drove to a fourth-place finish in the WEGTE class.

Martin Buchan raced at the front of the WEGTE field most of all drivers, leading 32 of 52 laps but ultimately settling for second place.

Mike Erickson logged 22 laps at the front of the WEP2 class in a second-place run.

Carty wrestled the advantage back and forth with Ronan Smedeman in a lengthy and unrelenting battle for third from the middle stages, running within an apex of each other over a range of 45 laps. Carty drove nearly equal parts leading Smedeman after being engaged by him on the second lap. Driving the BMW Z4 GTE, Carty fended off an extended challenge by Smedeman in the beginning, staying just an apex ahead of him over a solid run of 14 laps. After losing the spot on lap 23, Carty got around Smedeman for the second time and into fourth place on lap 47, and defended it against pressure by Smedeman another four laps toward the finish.

Carty finished the series third in the WEGTE class standings. Carty made six starts and led five of his 291 laps while taking the win once.

Buchan traded positions back and forth with Fahn Thomas in a long and tense fight for the race lead from the beginning, running within a bumper of each other over a span of 51 laps. Driving the BMW Z4 GTE, Buchan ran nearly equal parts leading Thomas after challenging and passing him on the second lap. Buchan fended off an extended attack by Thomas in the beginning, staying just a car length ahead of him over an unbroken run of 28 laps. In the end Buchan lost the spot on lap 50 and settled into second the couple laps running to the finish.

Buchan finished the series eighth in the WEGTE class standings. Buchan made two starts and led 32 of his 104 laps while finishing as high as second.

Erickson swapped leads multiple rounds with Alex Freitas in a lengthy and unrelenting battle for the race lead from the middle stages, running within an apex of each other over a range of 54 laps. Driving the Acura ARX 03, Erickson drove nearly equal parts leading Freitas after being caught by him on the first lap. Erickson fended off an extended attack by Freitas in the beginning, staying just a turn ahead of him over a solid run of 17 laps. In the end Erickson lost the spot on lap 28 and settled into second the 27 laps running to the finish.

Erickson finished the series in front of the WEP2 class standings. Erickson made eight starts and led 148 of his 457 laps while taking the victory three times.

Carl Middleton logged 25 laps at the front of the WEP1 class in a third-place run.

Middleton took the fight back and forth with Ville Hartikainen in a prolonged battle for the race lead from the beginning, fighting over a span of 33 laps. Middleton ran nearly equal parts leading Hartikainen after challenging and passing him on the second lap. Ultimately Middleton lost the spot on lap 47 and settled into third the 13 laps running to the conclusion, missing John Van Der Geest ahead by just 0.284 seconds at the line.

Middleton finished the series 10th in the WEP1 class standings. He made one start and led 59 of his 59 laps raced while finishing as high as third.

Ronan Smedeman won fifth place in the WEGTE class.

Paul Anstey captured third place in the WEP2 class.

Smedeman took the fight back and forth with Mark Carty in a lengthy and unrelenting fight for fourth from the middle stages, running within a car length of each other over a stretch of 44 laps. Driving the Ferrari 458 GTE, Smedeman ran nearly equal parts leading Carty after engaging and passing him on lap 16, coming from as many as three positions back. Smedeman fended off an extended challenge by Carty in the middle stages, staying just an apex ahead of him over a continuous run of 16 laps. In the end Smedeman lost the spot on lap 47 and settled into fifth the few laps running to the checkered flag.

Smedeman finished the series 21st in the WEGTE class standings. He made one start and finished as high as fifth.

RESULTS Click driver name for individual report
WEP1 1 Ville Hartikainen 59 1:31:13.844
WEP1 2 John van der Geest G.E.A.R. 59 1:31:46.475
WEP1 3 Carl Middleton Speedworks 59 1:31:46.759
WEP1 4 Tobias Mueller 58 1:31:29.627
WEP1 5 Ken Jagger Bad Voices Racing 57 1:31:45.709
WEP2 1 Alex Freitas Oceanika Motorsport 55 1:32:28.325
WEP2 2 Mike Erickson Bad Voices Racing 54 1:31:31.061
WEP2 3 Paul Anstey SimMadRacers 54 1:32:26.605
WEP2 4 Jorge Herrera 54 1:32:46.915
WEGTE 1 Fahn Thomas Oceanika Motorsport 52 1:32:00.226
WEP2 5 Bruno Chacon Riders on the Storm Racing 52 1:31:56.723
WEP2 6 Ramon Llupart Moonshine Academy 52 1:34:04.044
WEGTE 2 Martin Buchan Atlantic Motorsport Pro 51 1:31:17.867
WEGTE 3 Barrett Erickson Bad Voices Racing 51 1:32:16.796
WEGTE 4 Mark Carty CanAm Racing 51 1:33:05.035
WEGTE 5 Ronan Smedeman Moonshine Academy 50 1:31:19.068
WEGTE 6 Jason Whited Riders on the Storm Racing 49 1:31:14.339
WEGTE 7 Scott Ring 43 Suspension
WEGTE 8 Javier Manzanares 35 Suspension
WEGTE 9 Todd Chapman 13 Accident
WEGTE 10 Alan Chapman 11 DNF
WEGTE 11 Toni Baena 5 DNF
WEGTE 12 Bill Miller 4 DNF
POSTRACE

INT
0
FIN
1
Q
2
REP
+8
CLASS
WEP2
CAR
Acura ARX 03
Posted by Alex Freitas at 01:01 AM on Sun Dec 18 CET

Why Porfirio is not in the results?

Now the race:

Since qualy I was aware that would be close between me and Mike.And boy,it was.Most of race we were 1,2 seconds apart.With tires going down rapidly towards the end,I almost lost it in the last sector(I don't known how Mike avoid me,sorry!).The last lap would be tight if Mike haven't had his tire blow up.Gonna miss those battles...

Anyone got the replay?(since r2p doesn't anymore?!).Got it!(thanks John!)

INT
–32.631
FIN
2
Q
3
REP
+6
CLASS
WEP1
CAR
Porsche 919 Hybrid
Posted by John van der Geest at 01:16 PM on Sun Dec 18 CET

I was curious to see if Carl would manage to take second place in the end with the Toyota and doing a 2 stop. I just held on to second in the last lap with Carl almost on my bumper. That was fun. I was on hard tires and was down to my last red box and grip was bad, so that was a exciting last lap.
I did a Max Verstappen on him haha.


Posted by Gilles Lalonde at 10:55 PM on Sun Dec 18 CET

Sorry guys, my poor rig crashed right at the end of the warmup... too many entries... not enough memory.

INT
–1 L
FIN
3
Q
6
REP
+8
CLASS
WEP2
CAR
Oreca 03
Posted by Paul Anstey at 04:43 AM on Mon Dec 19 CET

Qualy was a disaster. I made a last minute change to my setup and the backup was way to loose and I lost it in T3 hitting the wall and ripping off the front wheel.

Started last and had to power through all of the GTE cars. Managed to do this fairly quickly and set about reeling in Porfirio and Jorge. My setup ate the front tyres and by the time I pitted I decided I needed new shoes. A 60 second stop meant Jorge overtook me in the pit lane. He made his stop at the same time. However for some reason he stayed on the pit limiter way too long and I overtook him at the end of the pit lane. Kept it clean from there on to the chequered flag.

Well done to the winners :)

Only 2 weeks to go :(


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