Michael Epps, Rudy van Buren and Bono Huis took the victories in the heats of the NOLA round of The Race All-Star Cup – Fully Charged by ROKiT Phones.
Following on from his victory in the grand final on the Silverstone National circuit last week, Huis won the hardest-fought of the three heats in the latest The Race All-Star Series round.
He surged from third to first at the start of the race, again using Indy Pro Series Tatuuses on rFactor 2, and initially escaped while fellow McLaren Shadow racer Kevin Siggy had to focus on fending off Erhan Jajovski and inaugural All-Star winner Jernej Simoncic.
As Siggy defended against Jajovski on the back straight on the opening lap, Simoncic charged down the outside and got between them into third.
Siggy held second, then steadily reeled Huis in and attacked through the final corners of the race. They were wheel to wheel twice before Huis made it to the flag first with Siggy, Simoncic and Jajovski right on his tail.
The pro driver heats were more straightforward at the front, but as wild as usual back in the pack.
Heat one polesitter Neel Jani was attacked on either side by sometime British Touring Car racer Epps and Wolfgang Reip at the start, with Epps making it from third to first around the outside.
Epps edged away from there, with Mercedes reserve Esteban Gutierrez charging up to second ahead of Jani.
Juan Manuel Correa – who is both accelerating and braking with his left leg while recovering from the horrific injuries he suffered in the Spa Formula 2 race last year – was the star as he came from the back of the grid to fourth.
Indianapolis All-Star final winner van Buren dominated heat two ahead of Mercedes Formula E racer Stoffel Vandoorne, with Charlie Eastwood emerging from chaos behind to complete the top three.
Ed Jones was an appropriate winner of the Jones Soda Last Chance Qualifying race, overcoming Gabby Chaves – one of the few participants with real-world NOLA experience from the track’s 2015 IndyCar race. Formula 2 race-winner Luca Ghiotto chased them home.