(Formula Ford Press Release)
Forced to settle for a third-place finish in Saturday’sround of the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain, there was no stopping Ashley Sutton today as he romped to twin wins in Norfolk in his EcoBoost Mygale. Sutton sliced through from third on the grid in the first of the day’s battles, and then led from pole to chequered flag in the second.
There were podium finishes today for Ricky Collard, Max Marshall, and for championship protagonists Harrison Scott and Jayde Kruger, with Jayde finishing second to Sutton in the finale to claw back some of the points lost to Scott in earlier races. After 18 rounds, Harrison now leads Jayde by 14 points.
The Hertfordshire 20-year-old took off from the grid like a scalded cat in his MBM Motorsport EcoBoost Mygale, pursued by the JTR car of Jayde Kruger, and quickly stamped his authority on the race. Though Kruger gave valiant chase, stealing the fastest lap from Sutton on the final lap, the result was never really in doubt. Sutton crossed the line 2.8s ahead of his rival to claim another £1000 victory; Ashley has now bagged £5000 for his efforts this season, more winnings than any other driver.
“The most exciting thing about my race was seeing the chequered flag,” joked Sutton. “Like this morning, it was a case of getting a gap and maintaining the lap times and being consistent. We’ve come away with another win and that was the idea; it’s been a good weekend all round.”
Kruger was disappointed not to have been able to take the fight to Sutton, but relieved to have finished ahead of his title rival Harrison Scott and to have salvaged a podium finish from a difficult weekend which got off on the wrong foot with major electrical problems in Friday’s testing. “That’s my best result from this weekend, so I can’t complain. Not the worst race and not the best race; I’d like to have won but the car took a little time to come good. I made a mistake or two at the beginning, as well. It’s a decent end to a weekend we’d like to put behind us, I think. The team have worked really hard for me and it’s some repayment for them.”
Max Marshall stole third from Scott early on in the opening lap, and Harrison struggled to stay on terms thereafter. Marshall, the Saturday race victor for JTR, claimed the final podium placing with Scott having to settle for fourth and a loss of six points to Kruger.
The battle of the race was between impressive championship newcomer Michael O’Brien (MBM) and Falcon’s Ricky Collard. O’Brien got ahead of the more experienced Collard for fifth on lap two but didn’t put up too much of a fight when Ricky decided he was coming back past two laps later. Collard was then handed a five-second penalty for exceeding track limits, and then a drive-through penalty for repeating the misdemeanour, which handed a delighted O’Brien not only fifth overall but also the Scholarship class runner-up spot. Said Michael: “That was brilliant – I was catching the championship leader towards the end, and took fifth overall and second in the Scholarship. I couldn’t have asked for anything more, really. I was maybe a little soft in letting Collard past but I thought I’d stick behind him and see where it took me; in the end he got a penalty and it all worked out.”
Juan Rosso placed sixth, the sole surviving Radical entry after James Abbott pulled off after a lap with a misfire, ahead of a determined-looking Louise Richardson in the Richardson Racing Mygale (seventh her best finish so far) and Chris Mealin’s Falcon car. The penalised Collard was classified ninth and Greg Holloway was 10th after a late spin in the SWB Sinter.