Carlin Rodin continued their strong showing in Saturday’s Race One, after claiming first, second, and third positions for the Race One and Three grids with Noah Lisle, Louis Sharp, and Dion Gowda, respectively.
Despite an accident between Aqil Alibhai and Gustav Jonsson that caused a red flag three laps into proceedings, Sharp would steal the lead from Lisle off the line and held it until the end, after a strong challenge from the Australian driver behind him.
The even-numbered grid slots on the outside proved to be a great place to start as Chris Dittman Racing‘s Daniel Guinchard followed Sharp’s lead and quickly passed Gowda to take third place. The former British and German karting champion couldn’t hold on to the Australasian leaders, but would successfully fend off his Singaporean-licensed rival to ensure that Carlin would not lock out the podium.
Daegan Fairclough also made a rapid start, jumping from seventh to fifth, which he held until the end to lead JHR Developments‘ charge. He would narrowly finish behind Gowda and Guinchard, with the trio separated by only 1.6 seconds after a 15-minute-long duel.
The chasing midfield pack would put on the best show of the day, but their frantic squabbling left them over 10 seconds adrift of the battle for the podium. Kanato Le and Aiden Neate broke away from the pack initially, although their advantage would be quashed as both received a five-second time penalty for exceeding track limits.
It would drop Le to ninth place, promoting William MacIntyre to sixth from rookie Josh Irfan and James Higgins. Behind Kanato was James Piszcyk, rounding out the points-paying top 10. Neate would fall out of the points following his penalty and was classified eleventh at the flag.
Sharp was clearly pleased with his partnership with Carlin. He explained, “The boys and girls at Rodin Carlin gave me another mega car, just like qualifying. It was on rails for those first few laps.”
Nonetheless, Carlin may have to reconsider their tyre pressure choice, as Sharp explained that the last few laps were tough to manage.
“It was tricky at the end. We kind of hit a bit of a wall with the tyres. The first two-thirds, three-quarters of the race, we had really strong pace, and all of a sudden it just took a massive decline. Yeah, Noah did keep me honest those last few laps, and I was having to just be careful but we were able to get the win.