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Drift Kings Round 1 & 2 Recap

Rick Van Goethem takes the win in the season opener in Italy with Dmitriy Illyuk claiming the victory at the second round in Hungary!

In the first ever round of the newly-formed 'Drift Kings' series, the former King of Europe and King of Nations elite returned to the Castelletto Circuit in Italy for the opening round, which saw heavy rain throughout the weekend create an extremely technical season opener.

Rick Van Goethem used the conditions to his advantage, as he toppled 2018 King of Europe Champion Marko Zakouril in the final round to clinch the top spot on the podium. Italian driver Alberto Cona landed third place.

Elena Zaniol secured the top spot above Karolina Pilarczyk and Michaela Sacherova in the Queen Championship, with Riccardo Tonali in 1st Davide Banno in 2nd and Luca Fuschini in 3rd in the Pro2 Championship.

With the weather forecast looking far more promising for the second round in Tokol, Hungary, it would take a sudden turn for the worse going into the Top 32 Pro battles, but it didn't stop the drivers giving it their all to fight for the podium.

After turning the circuit into a smoke bowl throughout Saturdays practice and qualifying sessions, it was local driver Simon Csaba that impressed the judges the most to take the top qualifying spot with 88.48 points.

In an insanely close session, Rick Van Goethem once again proved himself as he took second place with 88.39 points, shortly followed by Nicolas Maunoir with 88.43 and Stavros Grillis with 88.33! With less than half a point deciding the Top 4, we knew that game day was going to be exciting!

After a challenging Top 32 session, with the drivers giving the dedicated fans their best efforts, Marco Zakoruil would suffer severe car issues at the hands of former Pro2 Champion Pavlin Penev in the small final, which handed the Bulgarian a well-deserved spot on the Pro Series podium.

After an epic one-more-time encounter, it would eventually be Dmitriy Illyuk who secured the win after finding himself in the final with Round 1 winner Rick Van Goethem, who once again earned another podium spot, this time in second.

Drift Kings: Pro
P1 - Dmitriy Illyuk (Ukraine)
P2 - Rick Van Goethem (Netherlands)
P3 - Pavlin Penev (Bulgaria)

Rick Van Goethem's consistency throughout the two rounds means that he currently sits 25 points clear on the overall leaderboard, with Marco Zakouril in second and Dmitriy Illyuk in third.

Drift Kings: Pro2
P1 - Maxi Grimm (Germany)
P2 - Bence Gaspar (Hungary)
P3 - Tamas Kreisz (Hungary)

In the Pro2 series, Maxi Grimm made no mistake as he took the top spot after facing local driver Bence Gaspar in the final. Third place went to Tamas Kreisz.

Drift Kings: Queen
P1 - Karolina Pilarczyk (Poland)
P2 - Michaela Sacherova (Czech Republic)
P3 - Denise Ritzmann (Germany)

In the Queen series, Karolina Pilarczyk returned to form to land the top spot against Michaela Sacherova, as Denise Ritzmann took third place.

Click here for the Drift Kings Round 1 Official Photo Gallery

Click here for the Drift Kings Round 1 Official Video

Click here for the Drift Kings Round 2 Official Photo Gallery

Click here for the Drift Kings Round 2 Official Video

It's been a challenging, yet epic beginning for the Drift Kings series, and we can't wait for Round 3 in less than a month, where we'll be hoping for sunny skies and more insane battles!

Make sure you're there to join us as we return to Italy. This time, it's Modena that plays host as the competition gets even more intense!

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