With the Racing Club International Diamond Drive Cup coming to a conclusion at Imola, Aenore Rose had the championship clinched, guaranteeing her the title no matter the result. Aenore would push on to make history regardless, eager to become the only RCI champion to qualify first, win, and achieve the fastest lap in every round of an RCI sanctioned series. Meanwhile Ruby Acosta would race to improve her points standing, coming into the round fourth behind GTWR driver Sara Dove. Although Kaine Luna couldn’t participate due to hardware issues, her second in the standings was clinched, leaving the Brazilian with a fantastic debut season.
Qualifying was cold and precarious, but the two Queens’ Design drivers still put in a fantastic result with Aenore getting that sixth and final pole position from a 1:40.910. Ruby couldn’t improve on her time in the dying stages of the session but still managed to find herself in third with a 1:42.060, just enough to stay ahead of her championship rival Dove. Aenore launched off the line at the drop of the green flag for the 90 minute affair, and although Nicole Fox in second had a small chance at overtaking her in the very early stages of the race, Aenore would soon slip away and further increase the gap at the front. Ruby encountered herself in a close battle for third as she was jumped off the line by Sara, and did her best to try and find a way around for the first lap. Ruby would manage to sneak past on the lap after, getting to work on Nicole in second for a crucial points gain. With the race halfway completed the potential record-breaking feat looked good for Aenore, coming out of the pits well ahead of anyone else in the field. Ruby lost a few seconds in the cycle to Nicole, making the fight for second just a bit harder as the two would be evenly matched on pace. However, with under 30 minutes left in the race Nicole would make a mistake entering Tamburello. The two nearly collided as Nicole rushed to get turned around in the right direction, but Ruby was able to dodge the stricken McLaren in time. As the 90 minutes expired Aenore found herself across the line as the official overall and Pro champion, achieving a feat never done before in RCI competition history with a perfect season of six pole positions, six fastest laps and six victories. Ruby would manage to increase the gap to Nicole behind, achieving her best finish of the season in second. She’d manage to gain a position over Sara in the standings, making for a Queens’ Design 1-2-3 in the Pro class and overall.
The Diamond Drive Cup was a great way to introduce ourselves to the world of sim racing eSports, but more importantly we managed to reintroduce two drivers who were pushed out of the sport and have them improve their abilities and perform the best they’ve ever done in their careers. With their regained confidence, we’ll be sure to see them climb up the ranks. As for the whole of Queens’ Design, our next step will come very soon. We hope to see our supporters follow us wherever we may go, and we thank them for their continued support.
(text by Ruby Acosta, pictures by Aenore Rose)