Four Ferrari’s took to the track to represent the famed prancing horse brand in the IMSA iRacing Pro Series’ 3rd round. After a brief 10 minute qualifying session to kick things off, it was clear that the Ferraris’ wouldn’t have the outright pace for a win. Alessandro Balzan led the charge, qualifying on the 11th row, while James Calado, Michael Lewis and Mason Filippi found themselves a few rows further back. It was looking to be a thrilling race as the green flag fell just a few minutes later.
Drama in second half. Ferrari saw its hopes of a strong finish in the third round of the IMSA iRacing Pro Series dashed in the second half of the race as Alessandro Balzan’s brilliant strategic maneuver netted him second place after the pit stops, only to see all of that hard work vanish at the hands of an over-eager maneuver upon the restart. Having started on the 11th row, Alessandro made up significant track position as other cars peeled off to the pits. That included Alessandro, but by only fueling the car, he saved nearly 20 seconds compared to his rivals and vaulted into second position before the competition caution neutralized the race. Upon the restart, however, he was punted from behind going into T4, and that effectively ruined his chances of a decent result, ultimately finishing in 19th but still the best of the Ferraris.
Virtual Debut. Ferrari factory driver James Calado made his IMSA iRacing Pro Series debut, racing on behalf of Risi Competizione on a circuit that the English driver has never before competed on in real-life, never mind in the virtual environment. James did a strong job for a first-ever time, qualifying in the middle of the pack and adopting the same brave strategy chosen by Balzan. Despite incurring some damage along the way, he looked on for a solid finish in the top half of the pack, but late-race drama pitched the Ferrari into a spin and effectively ruined his race. James ultimately finished 23rd.
Michael Lewis and Mason Filippi never seriously factored, mirroring the conventional strategic route and finishing 28th and 33rd respectively, both one lap down from the winning BMW.
Schedule. The IMSA iRacing Pro Series will be back in two weeks’ time, at Road America on May 14th, again starting at 6pm, eastern time.