Photo finish in the V8 Oval Series: Barry Maessen gains important points in Venray
In the first race of the V8 Oval Series at Raceway Venray on July 24, 2022, just 0.027 seconds separated the top drivers – Barry Maessen made up important points
The first of three races in the V8 Oval Series at Raceway Venray provided pure excitement on July 24, 2022. Ralph Verberkt and Barry Maessen were battling for victory at the front and in the end, it was a blink of an eye that decided the outcome of the race. Verberkt finished just 0.027 seconds ahead of Maessen, who in turn secured the day’s win during the course of the race day.
Verberkt took the lead in the first race and fended off all attacks from Maessen in his Chevrolet Camaro, who had the current overall leader, Frank Wouters, in tow. The latter finished just 0.226 seconds behind the leading duo, making the first race a real three-way battle with a dramatic photo finish. Maessen, as Wouters’ closest pursuer, was already making up some points by then.
In the second race, Wouters in the #6 Late Model really turned up the heat. The Dutchman took the lead and crossed the finish line just ahead of Maessen. He was followed by Jeroen van Eerd, who completed the top 3. From the German point of view, it was to be a difficult race day: Hans-Jürgen Hummen had to park his car for the rest of the day after finishing twelfth in the first race and Philipp Bachor struggled with the handling of his Chevrolet. The latter took fifth place in the first race and finished the second heat in seventh place.
In the final over 30 laps – the heats went over 25 laps each – Maessen then prevailed against Wouters, which should be enough for the day’s victory. The driver of car number 14 thus made up a total of five points on Wouters in the championship battle. This means that the two are now separated by just eight points in the overall standings ahead of the famous World Cup weekend in August. Van Eerd secured third place behind them with three top-5 finishes.
The fans were also treated to an exciting comeback at Raceway Venray. After Joep Hendriks had surprisingly celebrated his return to the wheel of a Late Model in the 2022 season, his brother Roy Hendriks, who is active as a highly successful team manager in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, drove the car in July. Roy Hendriks took third in the finale, securing fourth in the day’s standings despite not having raced on the oval in years.
Bachor completed the top-5 behind him, despite a difficult day of racing, with Stephan Driessen sixth, followed by Jeffrey Hageman, Tino van Dijk and Job Rutten. Verberkt was involved in an accident in the second race and had to retire. The #2 car also didn’t really want to pick up speed in the final, which is why it was only enough for the title contender to finish tenth in the day’s standings. Verberkt thus suffered a major setback in the battle for overall victory in 2022.