Timing was everything at ISM Raceway last Thursday for the Sam Maxwell Customs 175. When to push? When to lay back? When to pit? For Marc “the Watchman” Cohn, the timing was perfect, as the rookie scored his first Lionheart Retro Series win. Cohn even picked the perfect race to win, as his personal sponsor, Sam Maxwell Customs, was also the title sponsor of the event. The moment was not lost on Cohn: “To win at Sam’s race, when Sam has done so much for me, I’m just trying not to cry right now, because this is the pinnacle of my racing career.”
Cohn came steadily through the field from an 8th starting spot, and was in just the right position when leader Dylan McKenna spun on lap 146 entering turn 1. Collected McKenna’s wreck were 2 of the fastest cars on the day in Dustin Wardlow and Sage Karam. Cohn, running just behind the pair was able to squeak through and inherited the lead. “Honestly I don’t know (how I got through that wreck) because I had been trying for laps and laps to try and get by Dustin and Sage.” But get through he did, and from there it was a matter of playing defence as Cohn managed to keep the cars David Altman and Ryan Otis at bay. The win saw Cohn rise a whopping 15 spots in the championship standings to 7th place. Otis meanwhile cut Karam’s lead in half to just 20 points.
Rounding out the top 5 were solid drivers from Dean Moll and Chad Dalton. Dalton especially had a solid drive from 23rd on the starting grid, and is the main reason the iRacing Today Motorports driver finds himself 4th in points behind Karam, Otis and George Sandman.
In the team championship, Firefly Motorports, lead by strong finishes from David Altman and Frank Bieser carried the day with 117 points, 3 points better than NLR Sim Racing lead by race winner Marc Cohn. Overall, Raven Motorsports Black still leads the way by 85 points over NLR, but they can’t afford to many stumbles.
This was a race of attrition as only 11 of 33 starters finished on the lead lap. It started off with an unfortunate netcode incident involving series founder Jorge Anzaldo and ended with a caution involving Joshua Gayman and George Sandman. Between those 2 events 11 cautions slowed the race for 43 laps.
If the drivers are hoping for relief however, the schedule makers at Lionheart have other ideas, as the series travels to Japan for their annual visit to Twin Ring Motegi, which is famous for it’s 4-wide action down the straights at speeds approaching 180mph.
Tune in this Thursday, May 9th, 2019 for the SimXperience 175 from Twin Ring Moteig, only on the iRacing eSports Network presented by GSRC.