Verberkt is the 2021 V8 Oval Series Champion at Raceway Venray
Ralph Verberkt secured the title at the V8 Oval Series finale at Raceway Venray – Jentsen Adriaenssens took victory in the ASCAR standings
The die is cast: Ralph Verberkt is the 2021 V8 Oval Series champion at Raceway Venray. The Dutchman beat Barry Maessen and Jeroen van Eerd in the finale on October 24 and secured first place in the overall standings of the Dutch Late Model series with two second places and a third-place finish.
Verbekt collected a total of 1134 points in the 2021 season. At the finale on the 0.5-mile oval (around 880 meters), the driver of the #2 car benefited from retirements of van Eerd and Maessen and impressed with his consistency. Verberkt made it onto the podium in all races, while van Eerd and Maessen had issues and thus lost important points.
Perfect start for Maessen
The race day got off to a perfect start for local hero and 2021 EuroCup winner Maessen in the #14 Chevrolet Camaro. The Dutchman drove to a dominant victory in the first heat ahead of Verberkt, setting an example in the championship battle. Verberkt finished second ahead of van Eerd. However, it was actually not Maessen who crossed the finish line first, but returnee Frank Wouters.
Wouters was disqualified after the race because his car was two millimeters too low. “Too low is too low,” Wouters told ‘Leadlap.net’ about his disqualification in the first heat. “The scrutiny has improved a lot since I left back then, which is something I really appreciate.” So Maessen inherited the win and crossed the finish line with a big lead over Verberkt.
Big-One shatters dreams
In the second race, the big-one of the day occurred at the start: In turn one, several cars crashed into each other, which is why there were many cold deformations. Van Eerd and Maessen were also involved, while Verberkt was able to continue unharmed. Also involved were Jos Kuypers, Philipp Bachor and Jeroen Hermans. The race was ultimately won by Wouters, whose car this time complied with the rules.
Verberkt was second behind Wouters, while Darragh Adriaenssens completed the top 3. Maessen, with his badly damaged car, still tried to race, but then had to park the Camaro prematurely on the small oval in the middle of the motorsport arena. This paved the way for Verberkt to win the championship.
Wouters dominates the final
The third race saw a hot battle between Verberkt and Maessen for first place. The two raced door-to-door for several laps, which is why Wouters was able to sneak up from behind. The returnee overtook both Maessen and Verberkt and also secured first place in the final – thus fourth in the day’s standings.
Maessen finished second, while Verberkt shot across the finish line in third. It was no longer enough for Maessen to knock his compatriot off his throne, so Verberkt was able to celebrate his championship victory after the race. Van Eerd finished second overall, while Maessen was third. Jentsen Adriaenssen finished fourth to win the ASCAR classification for symmetrical cars in the V8 Oval Series.
While Stephan Driessen completed the top 5 after a solid season, Philipp Bachor from Germany only had to settle for sixth place. The driver from Wattenscheid experienced a season with a number of setbacks and is eager to bounce back in 2022. Hermans finished seventh ahead of Darragh Adriaenssens, while Hans-Jürgen Hummen and Kuypers completed the top 10.