EOS33 FZW write up:
This season went as I expected last season, Lars and Timothy got their opportunity to fight for the championship and for quite a while it seemed like it could even become a 3 battle for the lead. Timothy took the lead of the championship with a decent 1-3 to kick off the season, it seemed last season's 3rd place finisher wasn't taking any prisoners as he lead the way for the entirety of 1 day. The next GP wasn't as good for him and instead ended up being a 1-3 to Guilherme which strangely enough left both of them behind Lars in the championship who had been consistently grabbing podiums until China. A relatively poor showing for Lars and another victory for Timothy put him in the lead of the championship again and Lars down to 3rd, it really was a topsy turvy season up until this point. And is if it couldn't get more hectic, Bahrain's impressive mix of strategies provided us with a new race winner, Santi, and a new championship leader, Guilherme. It definitely seemed as though the 3 were going to be relentless for the remainder of the season...
And if you really believed that you'd have been shocked to see the reality of the second half of the season. It seemed Timothy found a completely new gear, maybe from being a higher level relative to his opponents, and really started to pull away. Winning every GP from Spain all the way to Europe made the gap pretty much insurmountable and just 3 GPs later Timothy would be crowned as the champion of S33s rookie tier. Congrats on winning your first title, if you keep the sort of pace you showed in the 2nd half of this season pro could be a very successful season for you! Then there was 2nd to decide and unfortunately for Guilherme it seemed he fell victim to trying to compete with higher levelled teams, whether it was lack of experience, resources or activity something dragged him out of the chance to battle for 2nd and Lars was promoted quite comfortably to pro. Well done on finally reaching pro Lars, I hope you do well in the new tier. Unlucky Guilherme, but I feel next season could be the one! Still, you'll have to look out for Krishna, Santi and Hint who all seem to be making lots of progress!
S33 must have been the closest season pro has ever seen! At least it was definitely a far cry from the absolute domination seen just 18 days before! It really was a complete and utter mess and I loved it!
The season was kicked off with the equal highest leveled player of the tier, Cooper, taking the lead of the championship but behind him it seemed almost everyone got into the points, Thimo, James, Spencer, Marty, and Michael all got into the top 10 in the first round and it definitely wouldn't be the last time they'd see the top 10 that season. Surprisingly enough the next GP wasn't won by any of them though, in fact the top two was taken by null-pointers in the form of Thorvald taking what must have been his first FZ win and Red Burro. Cooper got the points he needed to keep first in the championship but another bad result in China was what killed it for him and instead what allowed James to take a win and the lead of the championship. Cooper's result was so bad that even Michael got close and Marty had suddenly also gotten into the mix.
So in no time at all 4 managers where in close enough proximity to take the championship lead at any moment. In the end it was the winner of the Bahrain GP who ended up the leader but surprisingly also least likely one to do it too. Marty won and went from 4th to 1st in no time at all and only helped his championship chances with another win in Spain. It was all looking good for the lvl15 but as we had come to know being in the lead didn't mean you would be keeping it for long and Cooper attempted to reinforce that by almost taking the top position after a 1-2 in Monaco only to miss out by 6 points! Now the championship really was a mess, behind the top two Spencer, James, Michael, Thimo and Thorvald all seemed to also be very close for the top spot too, just a few good results could see them rocketing up to 1st!
But as with all good things, the titanic battle these 7 players were giving us had to slowly fizzle out as the consistent top runners inevitably pulled away and soon we started losing players from the fight. Consecutive good results for Cooper and Spencer brought them right behind their lower leveled opponent and Hungary-Europe it all went up for them and down for an unlucky Marty. After leading the championship for so long 2 GPs getting an average of only 4 points vs the 30+ of his rivals put him in 3rd and with only 6 races to go he would really have to dig in to make up the ground again. But finally Belgium was the beginning of an upwards spiral for Marty as he gained massively on Cooper and only lost 4 to Spencer taking another victory! And even better for Marty, a 1-2 in Italy almost fully undid all the damage done by his 2 rivals over the last few GP putting him points behind Cooper with 4 races to go!
He didn't even stop there, Singapore becoming the 3rd GP in row that he had outscored Cooper and finally after losing the lead all those races ago he had it again with 3 races to space. But it was still silly close between them, around 15 points with GPs? 1 mistake could ruin it all! In Japan it seemed there was only 1 man who didn't make a mistake, and it was Marty, an absolutely dominant 1-2 by 26 seconds gave him a 30+ point lead going into the final two. And he would need every bit of that lead if he was going to keep it after missing Brazil, but that's what he did! Cooper had an open goal to be tied with Marty going into the final GP but Spencer denying him the win (and helping himself in the fight for 3rd with Michael) by a measly 4 tenths meant that it stayed at 7. It all came down to the final 27 laps of the season and Marty made sure it wasn't even a contest, his S S S versus Cooper's M M M, was unmatchable and the lvl15 manager grabbed a 1-2 and his first Formula Zero championship on the final GP of S33. Congratulations Marty! What an amazing championship to win! I hope you do very well and continue to surprise in elite!
Unlucky Cooper, this time you didn't quite make it to the title but at least I'm sure you know where you can improve and that'll all go into your return to the top tier. Thanks Spencer (congrats on 3rd), Michael, James, Thimo and Thorvald for giving pro a fight to remember. I wish you all the best of luck in S34!
Almost exactly as the entire tier had hoped for FZW elite finally got one of it's more interesting championship battles in seasons! With out Connor at the beginning of the season it was difficult to know who'd be the championship contender/s for S33 so things became a little clearer when Joshua won the first GP and took the lead by total of 7 points to me in 2nd. Still, it was just one GP and anybody could still get into the fight with all of the races remaining, instead race two would offer me my first win of the season and put me in the lead of the championship due to a relatively poor result from Joshua.
Nenad, Patricio and Povi were very close in their battle for 3rd too, up until this point none had gotten the big points but all of them managed to get top 7s in both GPs, and even though that didn't change going into China a 4th and 9th from Povi put him ahead of Patricio and only 1 point behind Nenad! Back up to the fight for the lead and it was almost a complete walkthrough from beginning to end for Joshua. From a 1-2 in qually to the 1-2 at the end of the GP virtually unchallenged meant that he retook the lead and the pressure was back on me to take it back! Just to make it doubly hard Bahrain was the same GP Connor returned to racing and he seemed eager to get back into the championship!
In the end a close battle with Connor and seemingly only Connor ended with me as the victor but only stretching the gap by 4 points. The "Blue Rhino" managed to move from 0 points to 5th in the championship in just one race but at this point I was still more worried about the manager right behind, Joshua, who didn't have the perfect GP and resulted in me taking the lead by quite a margin. Spain managed to produce a very similar GP to Bahrain, once again I won and only gained 4 points to Connor as Joshua had another relatively poor showing allowing the gap to open up to over 50 and for Connor to only be 39 behind from being 80 down.
Monaco must have been the biggest surprise of the season, the championship battle was pretty much left unchanged but crucially Chaz was able to convert a pole position into his first elite FZ victory. It wasn't easy, even at Monaco because of how aggressive everyone was off the start dropping him far down the order early one. Chaz fought back brilliantly and got himself the win, moving him up into 7th in the championship and fortunately for me stopping Joshua from completely ripping apart my championship lead! And even more fortunately for me it was Connor who went on to win Turkey while Joshua missed out on double points, handing me a near 60 point lead to Joshua and 70+ to Connor. From here it was just about holding out until the end of the season.
And in Britain I did a great job of holding out by giving away an average of 20 points to both of my rivals. It truly had to be one of my worst GPs of the season as I underfuelled off of the podium and instead Connor drove to a clear win while Joshua completed the podium. So in just 1 GP 1/3 of the lead was gone! Great news for both of the blue teams! Germany provided us with the same close finish it did last season, this time Povi did win and instead Connor was the one who found himself losing the lead on the last lap. Still, it did mean that he would move up to 2nd in the championship and that now after being 80 points behind just 4 rounds before had the gap down to below 40. It was clear who was now the main threat to my lead now, at least it was to me...
Finally we had reached the second half of the season, Chaz had moved himself up into 6th position in the championship now, already a full 2 positions higher than the season before despite also having Connor ahead. Povi continued to hold on to 4th in his first full elite season since he left a few seasons back. And the top 3 were only 40 points apart with 8 GP to go! The Hungarian GP really was a complete mix up, Connor lead the way for most of it, even if it did also mean having less kers than both me and Joshua, but that was only until a poor pitstop sniped him out of the battle for the lead and instead handed me an easy path to victory and Joshua 2nd position in the title race again. But because no one could get a really good result the gaps stayed relatively unchanged for another race.
And unfortunately for me Europe was the beginning of my championship woes, not having internet for a solid 5 GP meant competing with 2 very quick racers on a less preferred device and the cracks really started to show. Connor and Joshua continued to dominate the top 4-5 as I barely scraped keeping two cars in the points with Povi also always being their in case one of us made a mistake so now the gap finally dropped below 40 again. The tier moved on to Belgium where we got a few two stoppers going against a horde of 1 stoppers and it still ended mere tenths between them. Max was the only 2 stopper using SS while Povi was the only one using Softs and they still only finished 5 tenths off of each other, but just like last season it was a 1 stopper who won the GP in the form of Joshua. A solid 1-5 from him meant that Joshua was only ten points from taking the lead of the championship again and a little bit of air to Connor too.
5 GPs were now left of S33 and I wouldn't be showing up to the next 2, and with that news I already convinced myself that I was out of the fight and it was now up down to Joshua and Connor to battle it out for the championship but strangely enough neither of them would take the win in what was a stupidly close Italian GP. Everyone picked the same strategy but no one could compete with the top 3 of Povi, Connor and Joshua, the 3 must have been on very similar terms with kers because all 6 of their cars finished within 1.2 seconds of each other! Povi won and nabbed his 2nd win of the season as both Joshua and Connor amassed enough points to pass me in the championship and create our first lead change since Bahrain.
Singapore is a track where pole can run away with the race and just like 2 seasons before Patricio got pole again. Although this time he wasn't quite able to replicate the magical pace G Wood had that day and instead missed out on a win to Connor grabbing his 4th of the season. With that win he overtook Joshua in the standings again and was now a solid 35 points clear of me he got meaning an 85 point swing from Hungary. So after being far behind for the majority of the season Connor now found himself somehow leading it all with 3 races to go, but that didn't mean the pressure was gone!
Japan proved to be a weirdly indecisive GP for the championship, nothing really moved about, even if you looked down the order we didn't get any new managers in the points and Povi only further cemented his hold on 4th in the championship. I managed to win the GP but unfortunately even that wasn't enough to gain on Connor, so we moved on to Brazil as the hope of a final lead change began to decrease! Joshua and I would need to win to have a solid chance going into the final round, Connor only had to get some decent points to still have the best chance into the finale, but who wants "decent points"? And just as all the other times he had to fight to get the win against what appeared to be a quicker strategy from me and not only did he win but he also got a 1-2 and with Joshua who was already behind having another average GP the gap was only 2 points away from being mathematically insurmountable for the final GP...
So, after what really was one of the more exciting, tragic, confusing and inspiring seasons of elite FZW to date, the tier had reached the finale which was also the championship decider! And for the top 10 it was a lonely GP. Patricio lead the way for the 1 stoppers for the entirety of the GP using Povi's AI 2 stoppers as a way to pull away from the fatal four blue cars behind while I was busy trying and failing to make a 2 stop work around Abu Dhabi. In the end Patricio took a comfortable win to round of the season as Connor finally mathematically wrapped up his 3rd elite FZ title. Congrats Connor, S33 was a great comeback and a good sign going into the future. Unlucky Joshua, the beginning of this season looked quite promising for you but it just didn't go your way in S33, GL for S34. Wd on 4th on your return to elite Povi, S34 could even be your return to the top spot of FZW! And Congrats Patricio for being the last of the 100+ pointers.
Wd Chaz, Nenad (who I'm sad to say is leaving but hopefully will return to FZ one day), David, Mick and Steve for getting into the points this season and GL to everyone for S34, may it be even better than what we saw in S33!
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