Red Bull Esports’ Sebastian Job took the lead in the Porsche Esports Supercup championship after rival Joshua Rogers was the victim of under-fuelling his car in the Le Mans round.
Rogers was the fastest in qualifying and scored the full 10 points, but the reversing of the top eight meant he started in eighth and one position behind his nearest qualifying rival on pace Job.
They both quickly passed Dayne Warren and Rogers was able to overtake Job for sixth later on the opening lap at the Circuit de la Sarthe.
What followed was a charge up the order by the Coanda Simsport driver, who took the lead of the race away from Kevin Ellis Jr with five minutes left on the clock.
A lunge up the inside of the Arnage corner by Ellis lifted Rogers’ car up onto its two right side wheels, and while Rogers recovered he dropped to fifth.
At the start of what should’ve been the final lap, Rogers passed Sindre Setsaas to gain one position.
He then slipstreamed his way back ahead of Job by the end of the Mulsanne straight, and on the long run to the Indianapolis corner Rogers went through the middle of Ellis and Alejandro Sanchez to reclaim the race lead.
Fifteen minutes had passed on the clock, but the race unexpectedly still had one more lap left to run.
That meant Rogers, who only fuelled his car for an expected four lap race, at the last minute pulled into the pits to refuel with plenty of others doing the same.
Sanchez inherited the race lead but ran out of fuel in his attempt to complete the final lap.
It was Ellis who therefore finished in first with Job in second and Jamie Fluke third.
Mitchell deJong was the highest placed driver who came into the pits and finished in 14th.
Rogers crossed the line in 25th, which meant he had to start the 30 minute long main race from that position.
The Australian ultimately retired from the main race early on, scoring no points from either race.
Maximilian Benecke started the main race from 10th position, but quickly worked his way up to fifth.
Ellis and Job kept trading places up at the front, but a spin from Ellis under braking at the end of the Mulsanne resulted in him and his team-mate Fluke being taken out of race win contention.
Fluke tried to go around the outside of Ellis Jr, but was tagged by the back of his car and pushed into the gravel trap.
That promoted Benecke up to third and resulted in a final 10 minutes of racing where Job, Benecke and Yohann Harth constantly traded positions.
At the start of the final lap Harth had first place and Benecke second.
A move by Benecke into the Indianapolis corner gave him first with Harth unable to find a way back in front despite frantically searching for opportunity.
Benecke therefore won his third race of the season, matching third-place finisher Job’s total.
The results of the races are provisional and are subject to review given the unusual circumstances of the sprint race, but as it stands Job has taken the championship lead away from Rogers.
Job has a 54-point advantage over the reigning Porsche Esports Supercup champion.
The next round of the championship will take place in two weeks’ time on the Nurburgring Nordschleife.