Having taken second spot in the penultime qualifying session of the DMEC season on Friday, Irishman Jack Shanahan went one step further as he endured perhaps the wildest event of the season to date to defeat Polish driver Pawel Korpulinski to top the podium here in Germany. Here is all you need to know:
Shanahan took out English youngster Max Cotton at the Top 32 stage of competition, setting up a mouth-watering battle with Latvian young-gun and Iron Drift King competition winner, Nikolass Bertans in the Top 16, where Shanahan would simply prove too strong for the youngster as he moved forward to the Top 8.
The Top 8 portion saw Jack go against Czech driver, Marco Zakouril; a driver he’s only too familiar with, having battled on many occasions in the past. It would be touch and go for both drivers as a one more time (OMT) decision would come after their first shootout. However, with another battle in the bag, it would be Shanahan moving forward to battle Lithuanian, Andrius Vasiliauskas for a place in the final.
Vasiliauskas, a man possessed here in Germany would hope to see himself on a DMEC podium for the first time this season, but it wasn’t to be as Jack would push his way past the Lithuanian to battle an incredibly on-form Pawel Korpulinski in the finale.
Korpulinski was the one who perhaps looked the strongest heading into the battle after his performances in the lead-up, but it would be Shanahan that the judges would prove the more precise of the two, as he was crowned the king of Round 5 here in Germany, moving him to second place in the championship, a mere 12 points behind current points leader, Piotr Wiecek.
Rounding out the podium was Shanahan’s younger brother Conor, who overcame Vasiliauskas in the play-off to close the gap between Wiecek in first and him in third to just 37 points heading into the final in just 6 weeks’ time in Poland.
Speaking of Wiecek, the Polish driver and current championship leader would bow out of competition at the Top 16 stage after his differential would fall out of the car, seeing him score the lowest points he has at any round this season, closing the gap at the top.
Additionally Irishman James Deane, who sat joint-second heading into the event, would bow out of competition at the Top 32 stage after clutch issues saw him suffer a bad hit with the wall, moving him down to fourth place in the standings with 1 round left to go.
Delighted to take the win here in Germany, Cork native Jack Shanahan, had the following to say: “I’m absolutely delighted. I can’t believe I’m back in the championship fight after Riga and I’m ready to throw the kitchen sink at it!“
An equally as delighted Pawel Korpulinski said: “I couldn’t be more happy. Ferropolis is definitely somewhere special for me to get my second podium from the last 2 events here. With such a great result here I can’t wait for the final in my native Poland.“
With 5 rounds of the 2022 Drift Masters European Championship season now said and done, the championship title crown comes down to the Final Fight of the season in Lodz, Poland, on September 30th & October 1st, where fireworks will certainly fly!
2022 DMEC driver standings (after 5 of 6 rounds)
- Piotr Więcek POL 390 pts.
- Jack Shanahan IRL 378 pts.
- Conor Shanahan IRL 353 pts.
- James Deane IRL 303 pts.
- Tor Arne Kvia NOR 282 pts.