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Week 2: Bahrain Review - Torrent Motorsports
Ups and downs, but building steam steady!
The second race of the 2007 FSR Season took
"TMo Banner" place this weekend in beautiful Shakir, Bahrain. With Torrent Motorsports fielding cars in all 4 divisions that FSR offers, it was another busy yet successful weekend for Torrent Motorsports.
The first race of the weekend was the FSR AMA race and Anthony Rice and Michael Schreiner were representing Torrent Motorsports again. Anthony entered the race tied for 14th in the Driver Championship standings and Michael was tied for 18th. When the drivers got on track for qualifying Anthony was once again able to make it into Q2 for the 2nd straight week. He wound up 10th after Q2 and rolled on the grid in 10th place. Michael Schreiner was blocked in and did not get a clean lap and rolled on the grid in 22nd position.
When the race started there were some mechanical failures and bad luck for both of these drivers. Anthony Rice was running in the top 10 for the first half of this race and unfortunately his brakes started to fail. He ended up finishing 9 laps down in the 17th position. Michael Schreiner was able to get a clean start but was experiencing brake problems with about half the race to go, got hit in the rear entering a corner, and wound up in 22nd position. After the race Michael commented that, "The start was crazy and I made it through without damage but my brakes were not right and the rear tires kept locking up. Then someone hit me in the rear and the car wouldn't handle very well after that. I accidentally locked up the brakes and spun out again and that was the end of my race. I am really disappointed because I had a good setup, I am sorry I let everyone down.". Anthony Rice was having trouble seeing with his brake problems and he said, "Heading down into the left hand hairpin I lost vision and I was heading for the wall. I pitted and got the front clip replaced but my right front brake let go a couple laps later."
Tony Rice stayed steady in the 14th position in the Drivers Standings and Michael Schreiner stayed steady tied for 18th.
After the AMA race it was time for the Pro guys to get started and Torrent Motorsports has the strongest Pro team in the FSR series. The drivers of Donny Alumbaugh, Sam Giltner, Matthais Balanski, and Gary Madew all had a great weekend, some with heartbreak and some with great success.
In qualifying Sam, Matthais, and Gary made it to Q2. Sam Giltner started 2nd with Matthais Balanski in 3rd, and Gary Madew in 10th how unfortunately Donny Alumbaugh wasn't able to put a great lap together in qualifying and started the race in 16th.
The start of the race was very tough as Sam Giltner was able to pass the leader into turn 1, but made a mistake in turn 2 and Matthais Balanski came out with the lead after the first two turns. Matthais lead the first 6 laps until Sam was able to overtake and lead the remaining 37 laps. Sam Giltner took the 1st victory for Torrent Motorsports in FSR and the first win of his career. Sam was very excited and said, "I drove as hard as I needed to, didn't make any mistakes, and here we are...Victorious!!! Now let's look ahead to Australia, and see where we stand."
Matthais Balanski was having a great race and was running in 2nd place behind Sam with 13 laps to go when his brakes went out. Matthais was too upset to comment but screamed over the radio when his brakes went out and was very distraught over losing a podium finish. Matthais wound up 14th, one position out of the points.
Gary Madew started 10th during the race and had a very quiet, very clean race. Gary worked his way up to 6th place and scored 11 points for himself towards the Drivers Championship.
Donny Alumbaugh had a
"Sam Giltner Celebrates!" very good race, but during the first pitstop he missed his stall and had to go around the track again, costing him a lot of position and time then he lost his brakes with about 6 laps to go. When exiting the pits, Donny lost his brakes and nearly hit Sam Giltner who was coming around to complete the final laps of the race. It was a very close call and due to that, Donny decided to park his car after another lap to not put Sam in a bad position again. Donny said, "I am bad with pitstops and I need to practice them more, we would have been okay but missing that stop pretty much affected the rest of the race for me since I was upset and overdriving which resulted in some spins and may have elevated the potential for bad brakes."
All 4 drivers ran well and three finished in the points. The unfortunate trend of brake issues was evident in the first two races of the weekend and the issue would continue on to the WS Ace race. Sam brought home the first win for Torrent Motorsports and moved himself up to 3rd in the Drivers Championship standings. Donny Alumbaugh moved up to 7th in the Drivers Points, Gary Madew is up to 10th, and Matthais Balanski is tied for 16th. In the Team Standings Team Beta moved up to 5th while Team Alpha advanced to 7th.
After the Pro race the entire team celebrated Sam's win that night and had great confidence heading into the ACE and WC races with the monkey being lifted off the back.
The WS Ace race was very competitive and Torrent Motorsports decided to field 6 cars for the WS Ace event. The gap between 1st and 24th was less than 2 seconds and from 6th to 24th was less than 2 tenths of a second, the qualifying speed was very competitive. Unfortunately not all the drivers who attempted to qualify made the race. Michael Theis and Jimmy Jones were unable to make the race, being less than half a second off the final grid spot.
Four TMo drivers did make the race though, with Nicholas starting 17th, Klaus Seimetz (in his first race with Torrent Motorsports) in 18th, Gary Mola in 20th, and Wes Richards in 22nd. The race was going to be a tough one for all the drivers, as the race started there were large wrecks in turns 1 and 2 and all 4 of the Torrent Motorsports drivers were able to get through with no damage.
Klaus Seimetz came through the wrecks first and after lap was was in the 11th position. Klaus ran a very good race and ended up finishing 9th in his first race for Torrent Motorsports. There were some communication problems between him and Nicholas during the race but the two were able to work it out and were fine. Klaus was very happy with his finish and we look forward to more success from him.
Nicholas Morse came through the first two wrecks in 12th place and set his sights on Klaus. It took Nicholas a few laps to get around Klaus after communicating over the radio that he wanted by. Nicholas overtook Klaus and then continued to move up all the way to the 5th position. Nicholas then pitted and came out in 9th place. When making a move past the Mauricio Gomez, Gomez was able to stay close and coming out of turn 14, Gomez took out Nicholas who then spun, and was hit in the side by Blair Disley. This ended Nicholas and his race and he ended up finishing in the 19th position.
Gary Mola had a good clean start and worked his way up to 14th position through the early parts of the race. As his lap times continued to go down he communicated that he was feeling good. Early in the race he accidentally got on the gas a little too early in turn 4 and he spun and hit the wall. Gary damaged the left front suspension and his rear wing. After getting repairs, Gary reported that his car had horrible
"TMo in Bahrain" understeer and after his next pitstop he lowered tire pressures but the change made no effect on the car. During the middle part of the race on the very hot and tough desert track of Bahrain, Gary started to get dehydrated and shake. The team nutritionist stated that Gary was, "Severally dehydrated during the race, and he should pit to get fluids." Gary made it to his next pitstop and came in with Nicholas, Nicholas let Gary go as he was running higher but Gary overshot his pit and Nicholas swerved and hit the wall. When asked about the event and his physical condition Gary said, "I am sorry, I had to go to New York yesterday and I got very little sleep on the way back to Bahrain, and I was dehydrated from yesterday. I promise to be better prepared for the rest of the season, I don't want to let my teammates and sponsors down like that again."
Wes Richards did not have much to say after his 12th place finish. He was very unhappy and simply commented, "I decided to try a different race setup and strategy right before the race and it was a bad idea. The car was very slow for me." Two drivers finished well for Torrent Motorsports in the Ace division and 3 of 4 had great cars. When asked about his DNQ Michael commented, "I messed up twice, on my first hot lap I ran out of fuel and ruined a perfectly good lap. The 2nd lap my tires were not up to temp and didn't turn a good lap.". Jimmy was asked about his event also and replied, "I think I'll move to AMA, I think I am a bit too far behind in Ace to make the races, it looks like we have the Pro division wrapped up, so I think I'll drive in Ama."
With such an eventful Ace weekend it was up to the WC drivers to put the icing on the cake for the weekend. The World Championship race was another great success for Torrent Motorsports. Andreas Spengler and Petter Kaasa did a great job in the toughest division in the world.
Andreas started the race in 9th and Petter Started 14th but both had a great race after qualifying. Petter was able to work his way all the way up to 7th position after battling hard all day and commented, "If I had not been so bad at the starts I could have maybe gotten a better place. 7th is not bad with all the great drivers in this series. I think I will practice my starts before the next race, I lost 5 spots before I even got to the start/finish line at the start of the race, I need to do better and I will."
Andreas had the best run of the day going as he was on a 2 stop strategy and moved up to 2nd place with 10 laps to go. Andreas was shooting for a podium and was very close to doing that. He commented that, "The race was really awesome, if I had better rear tires and a bit more topspeed, maybe I could have saved the podium, but overall, it is a step in the right direction. We were really competitive this weekend." With 8 laps to go Darius Trinka got underneath Andreas going into turn 1 and that dropped Andreas to third. With 6 laps to go David Greco closed up on Andreas and overtook him in turn 14, putting Andreas back to 4th place. Andreas fought back but lost traction out of turn 6 with 2 laps to go and ended up finishing the race in 4th place.
Torrent Motorsports continues to move in the right direction and our results continue to show, we now have a 3 week break before we head to Australia, we will respond to all the fanmail and questions we got while we are away and thank you for your interest in Torrent Motorsports. Feel free to continue contacting us.
For more race coverage, head over to WWW.TORRENTMOTORSPORTS.COM!
Article by: TMo Press, 2007-04-03 16:47:38