We are not in the final stretch of our third season and the second season of the National Simulation Racing Series. This season the NSRS had a lot of new faces and it looked like we may see a new champion amongst the league’s best racers. However, with three quarters of the season complete and just four races to go Danny Vandoorne is leading the league by a significant margin.
If Danny Vandoorne is going to be dethroned some racers are going to need to really race well down the final stretch. The man closest behind the reigning champion is an NSRS rookie Spark Spencer III who made a name for himself destroying in the lower tiers last season. However, Spencer is currently 118 points behind the lead and has been in a bit of a slump himself lately.
Third place currently belongs to Tigole Bitties. In season 2, Tigole was not considered much of a contender but this season he has definitely made a splash. Bitties started season 3 off strong and held the lead in the NSRS for quite awhile but Danny Vandoorne was consistently behind him waiting for his opportunity to get atop the standings.
Fourth and fifth place in season 3 happen to both be the same racers that finished season 2 in those positions. Kurt Gunnabee is currently sitting in fourth and making a push to snag the third place position from Bitties. Alex Light is currently holding off Joe Trickle and Robert Phelps for the final position in the top 5.
The remaining races are all tracks that Danny Vandoorne performed well on during his championship run last season with the exception of the season finale, Talladega Superspeedway. Last season Danny really struggled in Talladega and ended up placing 15th, one of his less impressive races all season. Fortunately Danny is very comfortable on the other three tracks he has on the coming schedule. At North Carolina Speedway Vandoorne ended up in 4th place, at Road America Danny secured the third place position, and at the Kentucky Speedway Danny was able to finish in second place behind Kevin Keselowski who has been a non-factor in season three. If Danny is able to match those performances again this season, or even come close to them, he should have a very nice buffer heading into Talladega to end season three. It is going to take some major mistakes by team Vandoorne or a really impressive string of races for somebody else near the top of the standings to unseat Danny this year.
Speaking of Teams, Burnin’ Parms Motorsports is looking like they will be able to secure the first ever SCOR team win with their current 5964 points. The team is anchored by two top 5 racers in the NSRS with Danny Vandoorne and Kurt Gunnabee.
Behind the Burnin’ Parms is the group that goes by RJ Motorsports, who’s most valuable member may be their namesake Rick James who has been dominating the STSC after taking an extra season there to perfect his craft. Joe Trickle is also making a big splash for the team with some solid finishes thus far, including 4 top five finishes.
Rounding out the top 3 teams is Lightspeed Racing in third place, trailing RJ Motorsports by fewer than 100 points. Alex Light is definitely the heart and soul of this team but it does not look like they have it in them to secure the top team spot this season. Best case scenario they should be able to hold off Robert Phelps and Yuno Wozy to finish third.
Overall, this season has seen what is looking like two top dogs in each circuit and the continuation of the Danny Vandoorne dynasty in the league’s top series. Going forward, everyone will be fighting to take the crown. There is a slim chance that is happens in season 3 but many racers have already begun eyeing season 4. Personally, I have July 2 at Talladega Superspeedway circled on my calendar; maybe somebody can make a run and come home with the upset. We will see.