Kiss wins both races in virtual Most
07. July 2020After that blip the previous weekend when he finished second in Race 2 on a cyber Nürburgring, Norbert Kiss was back in dominant form in the ETRC Digital Challenge at the virtual Autodrom Most. The experienced sim racer was untouchable in timed practice, capturing pole for the first race. Sascha Lenz (MAN) and Lukas Hahn (Iveco) in the next two starting positions were some way off the Hungarian ace’s pace.
Every fan knows how treacherous the first chicane at Most can be – the two 90° bends, first right, then left, are the undoing of many a truck racer in the real world. In the game race too there was hefty elbowing, at the front, but Kiss was able to exit in the lead, even as Hahn got the jump on Lenz. Over the subsequent laps the Hungarian pulled away effortlessly, while the two Germans fought fiercely for the remaining podium places. Hahn was attacked almost non-stop by Lenz, who in turn had MAN rival Jonathan André hot on his heels. Lenz would get close enough to clobber his compatriot’s crash guard in the fast hairpin at the far end of the circuit, but he could find no opening to overtake, and Hahn crossed the line not quite a full truck length ahead.
The top eight finishers started Race 2 in reverse order. Czech Adam Lacko (Buggyra) was on pole, with British MAN pilot Jamie Anderson alongside on the grid and teammate Téo Calvet, the only competitor to have vanquished Kiss so far, prepared to pounce from behind.
This trio attempted to squeeze through aforementioned chicane side by side, but trying to get all three 2.5m-wide colossi through the two bends at race speed wasn’t going to end well for any of them. As we’ve seen already in the second races of this virtual series, there were some collision and the race had to be red-flagged.
The restart followed rather rapidly. Lacko lumbered off, while Anderson, who’d gotten his nose ahead of the Czech before the lights turned green, was off into the lead, tailed by the Buggyras. Before the first lap was complete, the Brit was docked 10 seconds for having jumped the start.
Lacko had regained his rightful lead, but he was overhauled by his youthful teammate in next to no time. While Calvet proceeded to pull away, Kiss had scythed his way up from P8 and was now looking for a way past Lacko. Kiss was through shortly enough, and closing in on Calvet. Lacko meanwhile came under intense pressure from the rest of the pack and, drifting way too wide, opened the door for Lenz and Hahn to shoot ahead.
Kiss was now right up behind Calvet, but as is so often the case in real-world racing, catching up and overtaking are altogether different propositions. Then the French teen made a mistake, allowing his momentum to carry him a metre wide on the exit of the curve at the bottom of the hill. Kiss powered pauseless into the lead. While Calvet was able to keep up initially, from then on it was Kiss all the way to the flag, with Lenz and Hahn following after in P3 and P4.