V8 Oval Series in Venray: Wouters, Maessen and Verberkt fight epic battles
Frank Wouters, Barry Maessen and Ralph Verberkt were the protagonists of the 2022 V8 Oval Series opener at Raceway Venray – Colin White surprised with a heat win
The V8 Oval Series (V8OS) 2022 at Raceway Venray has opened. As expected, there was an intense three-way fight at the top: Frank Wouters, Barry Maessen and Ralph Verberkt were the measure of all things and delivered hot battles in each of the three races. However, Colin White in his Chevrolet ASCAR surprised everyone with a strong race win.
In the first race, the battle was Wouters versus Maessen, who had to fight their way through the 16-car field from the very back. As both were part of the leading group – red starting numbers on the windshield – they started the 25-lap heat on the back straight. A caution period helped both catch up to the cars at the front.
Jeffrey Hageman, in particular, reeled off many lead laps but after the restart had no chance of keeping Wouters, Maessen, Verberkt and Jeroen van Eerd behind him. In the end, Wouters in the #6 car won by just 0.304 seconds over Maessen and 0.781 seconds over Verberkt. Van Eerd was fourth, with Hageman completing the top-5.
The second race presented a similar picture: the top drivers had to fight their way to the front thanks to the new starting procedure and were again lucky that a yellow phase brought the field together. Nevertheless, White surprisingly won the race in his Chevrolet. Verberkt finished second ahead of Maessen, while Wouters finished fifth behind Yevgen Sokolovskiy.
A small insertion: Sokolovskiy had clashed with White in the first race. During the contacts on the start-finish straight, the Ukrainian’s car repeatedly took off in spectacular fashion. In addition, Sokolovskiy invited his family and many friends to Raceway Venray, who have left their home country because of the war of aggression on the part of Russia.
In the final Wouters dominated the action, but in the final phase the V8OS veteran came under pressure again and again. First, Verberkt put a lot of pressure on the #6 car, but couldn’t get past Wouters. Then the driver of the #2 car had to leave the field to Maessen, who now attacked Wouters. Wouters parried all the attacks and finished 0.155 seconds ahead of Maessen. Verberkt finished third ahead of White and van Eerd.
Wouters won the day’s standings ahead of Maessen and Verberkt. The three are separated by just eleven points after the first day of racing. White secured victory in the ASCAR class for symmetrically built cars. The Briton beat Hageman and Job Rutten. Philipp Bachor, Hans-Jürgen Hummen and returnee Milou Mets were very unlucky: All three had to contend with technical problems and ended up at the back of the field.