The Carlin‘s proved their race pace was just as strong as their qualifying pace, with the team taking up all three podium positions. Despite pressure at the start, pole sitter Petru Florescu held on for the opening lap as he stretched his lead over the course of the first MSA Formula race of the season on Saturday.
Despite starting in third, it was Max Fewtrell who made the best start of the Carlin drivers, quickly deposing of James Pull in second before challenging Florescu as the pair raced up to Paddock Hill bend.
While he might have had the momentum, Fewtrell was left with nowhere to go as he was edged to the side of the track, with Florescu managing to hold on to his lead. The Romanian was given the free air to break clear as Fewtrell was forced to defend his line from Pull behind.
Florescu went on to prove his pace by setting seven consecutive fastest fastest laps, managing to pull out a three-second advantage over his team-mates. His lead was cut short as Ross Martin crashed into the wall at Druids, bringing out the Safety Car.
A one lap dash saw only one driver gain a place as the rest of the field crossed the line in mild confusion with the chequered flag being flow ten-seconds before the time ran out.
This left Florescu with his first ever MSA Formula victory, the championship lead and the fastest lap. Fewtrell held on to second while Pull came home in third ahead of Luis Leeds, who’d spent most of the race defending.
Sennan Fielding had made the best start out of the front runners and jumped from ninth to sixth within the opening few corners. From there he proceeded to pressurise Rafa Martins in the early stages before making the pass with a dive at Paddock Hill Bend.
Jamie Caroline had tried to follow him through, but was unable to make the move stick. He eventually succeeded some laps later in a perfectly timed move just before the safety car was deployed. Martins was determined not to let the position go so easily, weaving on the final lap, before crossing the line in seventh, behind Fielding and Caroline.
The top eight was rounded out by Alex Quinn, who took the rookie victory after a sensational defensive display saw him hold off far more experienced drivers. He’d started fifth but a poor start saw him fall backwards, over the course of the race he struggled to keep pace with the top seven, but managed not to lose any more positions, despite his lack of experience.
Brands Hatch Race 1 Results
|4||26||Luis Leeds||AUS||TRS Arden||+1.392|
|5||3||Sennan Fielding||GBR||JHR Developments||+1.846|
|6||38||Jamie Caroline||GBR||Jamun Racing||+2.424|
|7||21||Rafa Martins||BRA||TRS Arden||+2.684|
|8||7||Alex Quinn||GBR||Fortec Motorsports||+3.118|
|9||93||Zane Goddard||AUS||Double R Racing||+3.390|
|11||23||Billy Monger||GBR||JHR Developments||+4.313|
|12||96||Jack Butel||GBR||JHR Developments||+4.686|
|13||63||Nicolai Kjaergaard||DAN||Fortec Motorsports||+5.348|
|14||35||Harry Hayek||AUS||Jamun Racing||+5.740|
|15||8||Carrie Schreiner||DEU||Double R Racing||+6.404|
|16||88||Jack Martin||GBR||TRS Arden||+6.653|
|17||44||Patrik Matthiesen||DAN||Joe Tandy Racing||+7.224|
|18||67||Frank Bird||GBR||Fortec Motorsports||+7.800|
|RET||33||Ross Martin||GBR||Fortec Motorsports||Retired|