Nagy and Davidovski share wins in Zolder SIM races
13 July 2020
Dániel Nagy and Viktor Davidovski took a win apiece after a pair of action-packed races at a virtual Circuit Zolder in Belgium, with Gilles Magnus and Bence Boldizs keeping just within fighting distance in terms of the championship.
In qualifying, Magnus set the first benchmark in his Comtoyou Racing Audi of 1:36.200, but after ten minutes it was Nagy who leapt to the fore with a time of 1:35.907, before improving his time again with a lap over eight-tenths of a second quicker than his title rival. Nagy’s teammate Mat’o Homola moved up to second until the final moments of the session, when a flurry of late improvements from Magnus, Teddy Clairet and Bence Boldizs demoted the Slovakian to fifth on the grid.
In the first race, Nagy led the way from pole position into Turn 1, while Magnus was caught out by the fast-starting Peugeot of Teddy Clairet, with the Frenchman jumping ahead of the Belgian into second. A three-car incident occurred further down the order, with the Peugeots of Jimmy Clairet and Aurélien Comte coming together, which also collected the Honda Civic of Viktor Davidovski, with Comte retiring from the race.
Before the end of the lap, Magnus had got back ahead of Teddy Clairet at Turn 7, while Nagy was now starting to pull away from the pair of them quite comfortably.
The second BRC Racing Team Hyundai of Homola had jumped up to fourth ahead of the Zengõ CUPRA TCR of Boldizs at the start, but the Hungarian was able to re-pass the Slovakian at the start of lap three.
Soon after, Homola dropped out of the race when he disconnected, promoting the Comtoyou Racing Audi of Nicolas Baert to fifth position, just as the Belgian had just overtaken the Peugeot of Gustavo Moura. Further back, Abdullah Al-Khelaifi was having to defend in his CUPRA against the closing Hyundai of Luca Filippi, and the Peugeot of the recovering Jimmy Clairet. Filippi made his move around the Qatari driver on lap nine at Turn 3 to take seventh, while there was trouble a lap later as Gustavo Moura went wide at Turn 4 and out of sixth place, holding up Al-Khelaifi and giving Jimmy Clairet an easy pass.
Up front, Nagy controlled the race and went on to win by four seconds ahead of Magnus, and extended his championship lead, while Teddy Clairet completed the podium in his Peugeot.
In the second race, the top ten were reversed, which meant it was the PSS Racing Team Honda of Davidovski that started from pole position. The Macedonian made a great start to lead the way into Turn 1 ahead of Moura and Al-Khelaifi. There was drama behind involving all four of the championship front runners, with Nagy spun out at Turn 1 with contact from Teddy Clairet, while Boldizs was also turned around after coming together with Magnus.
Later on the lap at Turn 7, Filippi grabbed the final podium spot from Al-Khelaifi, while there was further trouble as Comte, who had started last and was already up to fifth in his DG Sport Compétition Peugeot, was spun around by Boldizs, and collected Jimmy Clairet in the process.
While Davidovski controlled the pace up front, the rest of the race was all about Magnus and Nagy’s recovery from their lap one incidents, with Magnus picking off a car per lap from lap three, overtaking Al-Khelaifi, then Filippi, and then Moura to move up to second, where he’d go on to finish. His pass on Moura involved some contact at Turn 2, which saw the Portuguese driver fall all the way down to ninth.
Filippi was now promoted to third, but the Italian soon had the recovering Boldizs closing in on him. Boldizs tried to dive down the inside at the Turn 10 chicane to grab third on lap 11, but ran wide and fell back behind Nagy who was now sitting just behind his teammate for the final three laps.
Davidovski went on to claim his first win in the TCR Europe SIM Racing series ahead of Magnus and Filippi, while Nagy picked up key points in fourth, and now holds a 71-point lead over Magnus with 90 points available, going into the season finale on July 22nd at a virtual Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
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