Ira Sidorkova takes double podium in RSKG
Updated: Oct 12, 2022
In the fourth round of the 2022 RSKG season, Irina Sidorkova completed a great recovery in Race 1 and collected a double podium that brings her back to third in the championship standings.
After a challenging round in Kazan, where she had to deal with the extra weight of her car ballast, young driver Irina Sidorkova had another chance to prove her ability to overcome the difficulties that come her way. Round 4 of the RSKG 2022 season was held at Moscow Raceway in Volokolamsk and was a pretty intense showcase of how Irina can bounce back on the race track.
Making her return to Moscow Raceway after almost 3 years, the first track activities of the weekend were not yet what the 19-year-old driver expected – despite the young age, Sidorkova is always aiming for the top end of the classify.
The last time Ira Sidorkova contested a race at the circuit was in 2019, as she raced in the Formula 4 SMP – in a stage marked by heavy rain that hit the circuit that weekend. In the most recent outing, in 2020, when she competed in the Touring Light class, she had to miss the weekend at the last minute, due to mechanical problems on her Volkswagen Polo.
The qualifying session for race 1 presented a fierce battle, where the best lap times recorded from the 2nd to the 6th placed were within the same second. Ultimately, Irina’s 1:49.980 effort gave her 6th place on the starting grid.
With podium expectations, Saturday's race of the Super-Production class started was off to a bad start for Irina Sidorkova - as the driver herself described, she dropped from 6th to 9th position. With the sudden change of scenery, the race became a new challenge for Sidorkova, who would have to fight even harder to achieve a good result.
Despite the challenging scenario that had arisen, in the first few laps the young driver already showed a quick reaction and recovered some positions: by the 3rd lap, she was already in 5th place. Aboard her Subaru BRZ #51, Irina continued to charge up the field, maintaining a good pace. On lap 7, she reached fourth-placed Nikolay Vikhansky.
The fight was intense and, on lap 8, Irina tried to overtake on the inside at turns 7 and 8, where there was contact: Vikhansky lost control of his Honda Civic and dropped to 7th place. The incident between the two allowed Sanvel Iskolyants to catch up with them and he would take fourth place, with Sidorkova remaining in 5th.
As Roman Golikov and Ivan Chubarov fought for the lead, Sanvel Iskolyants and Ira Sidorkova approached Leonid Panfilov in third, in what would be the battle for the podium. The action between the three was extremely thrilling and they traded places several times until Sidorkova made a brilliant double-pass – but Panfilov could fight back soon after.
Irina remained determined to get that final podium spot and, with another daring maneuvre, she finally managed to overtake Panfilov, as he lost control of his #53 Lada Vesta under braking into the last corner. Roman Golikov won the race, followed by Ivan Chubarov and Ira Sidorkova – who brilliantly managed collect yet another trophy for her cabinet.
Unlike the day before, race 2 presented a less eventful scenario. When the red lights went out at Moscow Raceway, an accident at the first corner involved the #78 and #17 cars of the "Touring" class – which always shares the track with the "Super-Production" – imposed the yellow flags in that sector.
With the safety car being deployed only at the beginning of the third lap, there was time for several battles until the neutralization: Ira Sidorkova had started from fifth position and was already up to third. The race then resumed on lap 5.
Since the restart of the race, Sidorkova has maintained a strong pace driving her #51 Subaru BRZ and was closing in on second-placed Leonid Panfilov. On lap 9, Irina managed to overtake her opponent and with that, she was once again closer to the top step of the podium.
However, her momentum to fight for her second win of the 2022 RSKG season was hampered by a mechanical issue that arose in the remaining laps. Even so, Ira Sidorkova managed the gap and crossed the finish line in second place. The race was won by Ivan Chubarov and Roman Golikov completed the podium.
RACERS: You showed once again a great fighting spirit, especially in race 1, with a fantastic recovery to reach the podium. After this intense round at Moscow Raceway, are you satisfied with the results achieved over the weekend?
IRA: "Thank you! I was hoping for the win, but due to the qualification – I did the best lap but it was cancelled for crossing the lines, though I was not sure of that – I started far away from the leader and it took me too much time to get to the front."
R: Certainly getting two podium finishes after a tough round in Kazan is very encouraging. Do you feel a renewed motivation after spending your summer break in Karelia and are you ready to fight for more wins in St. Petersburg?
I: "I always feel the motivation! It is just sometimes objective issues doesn't allow you to be competitive. It happens in motor racing. If I have a good speed I will definitely aim at the win. But I will fight for the win even if those mentioned issues can be an additional challenge."
With the results obtained at Moscow Raceway, Ira Sidorkova returned to the top 3 in the championship standings, with 137 points – 51 behind the current leader, Roman Golikov, and 32 behind the runner-up.
Now, Sidorkova begins her preparation for the next round of the RSKG, which will take place at the modern Igora Drive complex in St Petersburg, between 9th and 11th of September.
Drivers will tackle for the first time the new circuit layout, expanded to meet FIA Grade 1 regulations.