PGRL S3 R12 Recap
08 November 2022
Pretty Good Racing League | Season 3 | Round 12
Premier Series | Phoenix Raceway
Sim Racing Software: iRacing
Thomas George with Steel Horse Racing took the checkered flag as well as the Season 3 Championship tonight in the MC² Editing Services Leading the Way 250k at Phoenix Raceway with the Pretty Good Racing League ahead of Cody Dempster and Michael Chrobok. “We fricken did it!”, George exclaimed as the official points results were released live. “I just said to myself, you just gotta go out and you have to do what you can do, and you know let stuff play out as it’s supposed to… I can’t believe it!”
Isaiah Dupre led the 22-car field to the green flag to kick off the last race of 2022. The early stages of the race saw several drivers struggling with loose conditions on cold tires until getting settled in with the first 10 laps behind them. Mike Rasimas took the lead ahead of Thomas George and Woody Mahan as Dupre fell far back into the field. Michael Chrobok, the points leader coming into the night, was up to 7th and quietly climbing up through traffic making the calculated moves we’ve seen from him all season.
George took control of the field away from Rasimas going into lap 16 and started checking off laps as the field started to spread out around the track with very few side by side battles. Scott Eckrich climbed up into the top 10 running behind Jeff Ward making their expected charge to the front with only 25 laps completed. Going into lap 33, Cody Dempster got loose and slid up toward the outside wall catching Eckrich and bringing out the caution flag giving the leaders a safe chance to come down pit road with George still in control of the field as the green flag came back out.
Yaczik stayed close behind George off the restart with Ward quickly closing on the leading battle from 3rd. Chrobok was up to 5th behind Adam Jurski and Eckrich seemed to be out for the night with significant damage from the earlier incident with Dempster. The drivers were settled into a groove with the laps counting down going into the 2nd half of the night. All 3 championship contenders were running up front with George still in the lead followed by Chrobok and Yaczik. Ward had fallen off the pace and was over 2 seconds behind the leaders running in 5th behind Rasimas.
Chrobok made a risky move coming down pit road under the green flag very early in an attempt to undercut George for the lead. Yaczik saw the move and came down pit road on the following lap, but unfortunately for both drivers Jordan Harnish lost his car trying to get slowed for pit entry and brought out the caution flag forcing Chrobok and Yaczik to restart from the tail of the field going into lap 82 with George still in the lead. Off the jump, George quickly started to pull away from the field building up a gap of over 1 second in the first few laps.
Chrobok was again quietly climbing up through the field back up to 7th as Rasimas was closing the gap to George in the lead with 100 laps completed. Dempster had cleared around Greg O’Berry for 3rd with Ward running directly behind them in 5th. Going into the final 50 laps, 13 drivers were still on the lead lap with George still holding a strong pace in the lead. Yaczik seemed to be struggling running in 11th behind a 3-car battle for 8th between Chance Manning, Rich Jette, and Dupre.
Chrobok reeled Ward and Harnish in and tried to split them. Chrobok was able to clear Ward and dove under Harnish moving up into 5th making aggressive moves to make up lost time with the laps quickly counting down. George and Chrobok came down pit road together on lap 117 under green flag conditions handing the race lead over to Rasimas for the moment. The final pit cycle was completed through the field with 20 laps remaining with George in the lead ahead of Dempster and Chrobok. Chrobok was consistently closing on Dempster who was running a few car lengths behind the leader.
Going into the final 10 laps, the top 3 were coming closer together as Dempster and Chrobok continued to put down faster lap times than George with the leaders quickly negotiating through dense lap traffic. As the checkered flag came out, Thomas George was able to hold the lead and take the final win of the season and secure the season championship with Cody Dempster, Michael Chrobok, Mike Rasimas, and Isaiah Dupre rounding out the top 5 tonight at Phoenix Raceway.
Thomas George overtook Michael Chrobok for the points lead tonight by 2 points to take the championship with 418 points overall. Brian Yaczik finished the season out in 3rd with 394 points. Scott Eckrich held onto 4th place with 350 and Cody Dempster moved up into 5th with 338 points as Season 3 came to a close. The drivers of the Pretty Good Racing League now head off into the off season, but you can find them back here for Season 4 next February on the Virtual Grip Network!