WORDS: Ryan Jones
Australian Josh Rogers has closed to within 14 points of the Porsche TAG Heuer eSports Supercup by taking his second-consecutive feature race win in Round 6 of the series at Brands Hatch on the weekend.
For the first time this season, Rogers failed to take pole after a mistake on his final timed lap left him fourth on the timing board. Nevertheless, fellow compatriot Dayne Warren snatched pole position for himself, maintaining a 100% record for Australia in qualifying this season. Joshua Anderson qualified in 20th position for the sprint race while Jarrad Filsell did not compete in the event.
The sprint race action largely manifested in the battle for 2nd position while eventual race winner Alejandro Sanchez opened up a healthy margin out front. That particular battle reached boiling point at the halfway mark with championship protagonists Sebastian Job and Rogers throwing everything at the backend of Jamie Fluke’s Apex Racing Team car. Both drivers were able to eventually get by and then pull away to ease the pressure on themselves. Dayne Warren meanwhile found out the downside of going fastest in qualifying, as the reverse grid put him in eighth on the starting grid and he struggled to make progress throughout the race. Anderson couldn’t rekindle the form of last round and had his hands full on his way to a 24th place finish.
Desperate not to let Sanchez get away like in the sprint race, Rogers raced out of the gates in the feature race and hounded the pole sitter in the early running. Dayne Warren’s event took a bad turn on the opening lap with the privateer driver dropping to 27th place, and just up the road was Anderson who picked up three spots early on. Crucially, Warren didn’t let the early mishap trigger more errors and he was gradually able to claw his way up a few spots in the ultra-competitive field. One of those spots was that of Vendaval’s recently returned Anderson who saw his race playing in reverse to Warren as he fell further down.
The trigger point up front came almost exactly at halfway with a swift dive from Rogers at Hawthorn bend proving to be almost undefendable; once given the clean air, the reigning champion drove away to pick up his second consecutive PESC feature race win. Warren finished in 18th place while Anderson ended up 4 laps down, in 28th.
In the championship fight Rogers is now 14 points shy of Job at the top, while Warren is sitting comfortably in fifth. Anderson is narrowly holding onto an automatic spot in next season’s competition thanks to his place in 19th and Filsell is 24th – 21 points away from the final 2021 qualification berth, held at the moment by Max Verstappen.
The next round of the Porsche eSports Supercup will take place on the 29th of August at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.
Porsche TAG Heuer eSports Supercup Points
1. Sebastian Job – 360
2. Josh Rogers – 346
3. Alejandro Sanchez – 333
4. Maximilian Benecke – 285
5. Dayne Warren – 246
6. Jeff Giassi – 209
7. Kevin Ellis Jnr – 189
8. Tommy Ostgaard – 186
9. Sindre Setsaas – 158
=10. Jeremy Bouteloup – 139
=10. Graham Carroll – 139
19. Josh Anderson – 81
24. Jarrad Filsell – 58