After a great 2014, in which Faster Than Speed returned to victory, taking its first three race wins since 2009, the target for our 15th FSR season was clear: a much improved showing in the FSR World Championship, where the team had struggled with some well-known external issues the previous year.
On March 29th, FTS unveiled the stunning FTS-P15, the panther beast for our 15th FSR campaign. If you missed it before, turn the volume up, select YouTube's 1080p quality and enjoy the launch videoclip of the FTS-P15:
The year kicked off to a good start for the team. Patrick De Wit scored the first points of the WC season with a hard-fought 9th place at the Melbourne season opener. A spirited drive in the following round at Sepang, with several overtaking moves and battles until the final lap, gave him 7th place and strong points in a race with 21 finishers.
However, several incidents, some bad luck plus a few mistakes meant the team was unable to score the following five races, despite showing some excellent pace on occasions, such as at Spielberg. It was a dry spell which was successfully turned around later during the season.
As Patrick and the team decided it was best for him to end its participation in FSR due to personal reasons, the team brought in Mike Partington for the second half of the season. At Silverstone, FTS scored its first double point-scoring finish of its 15th FSR season, with reserve Eros Masciulli and Mike finishing in 7th and 9th places respectively. Another reserve, Victor Ivanov, gave the team a further point at Monza with a 10th place finish that could have been a lot more.
At Spa-Francorchamps, Mike Partington put in a fantastic drive to finish in 5th place, a faultless race after a brilliant qualifying, placing the FTS-P15 on the front row. Two weeks later, he delivered another stunning drive at Singapore, putting FTS back in the FSR WC podium, at least for a few days. Mike made great use of strategy and then resisted a late charge from the eventual World Champion Brljak to finish in a fantastic 2nd place. Unfortunately, a post-race penalty left him without his deserved podium, with the 30 added seconds demoting him to 6th place.
More points at Suzuka and Austin meant FTS scored points for six consecutive races, with strong races from Norbert Leitner to 10th and 8th places respectively, before driving the team's final FSR lap at Interlagos.
Faster Than Speed drivers also had great performances off the main FSR season. Before the start of the season, Patrick De Wit became the 2015 FSR Winter Series champion, winning 2 races and finishing all 4 in the podium, driving against many of the top FSR WC competitors.
After the season came to an end, the FSR Race of Champions also allowed an FTS driver to shine: Norbert Leitner, who got up to the semifinals, just a race short of getting to the final. He was only defeated by the 2015 champion Brljak, who only lost a race to Norbert throughout the competition.
Achieving the aim of a much stronger showing in the FSR World Championship, it was a good final season, with points scored in 8 out of 14 rounds and enjoying some fantastic drives. Faster Than Speed ended its 15th FSR WC season in 9th place, with 40 points.
A few weeks ago, Faster Than Speed announced its decision to put an end to its 15-year participation in FSR (see An incredible journey...). Over its 15 seasons of FSR action, Faster Than Speed has achieved 5 online championship titles, over 35 race victories and well over a hundred podium finishes. 115 different drivers have sat inside our striking panthers and will leave lots of incredible memories forever. In FSR WC, the team took part in 243 FSR WC GPs, with 486 starts, scoring a victory in Turkey 2007, 11 podiums finishes and 3 pole positions.
As we close our 15th and final FSR season, get ready to have a look back at the team's greatest FSR moments and relive the most unforgettable races of its 15 FSR seasons in typical FTS style! Stay tuned and thank you for your support all these years!