Fewtrell pushes to the max for maiden Ford MSA Formula victory

  • Fewtrell caps off brilliant weekend with maiden single-seater victory.
  • Win sees Fewtrell snatch the championship lead from Carlin team-mate Petru Florescu.
  • Formula Kart Stars champion Ross Martin takes first Rookie Class win.

DONINGTON PARK 17 APRIL, 2016 – They say things go in threes and for the third time in succession Donington Park played host to a Ford EcoBoost-powered lights to flag victory. In round six the spoils went to Carlin’s Max Fewtrell ahead of TRS Arden’s Luis Leeds and Fortec rookie Ross Martin.

It was a straightforward race for Fewtrell who like the weekend’s earlier pole sitters made a perfect getaway when the lights went out.

The same could not be said of Alex Quinn who struggled off the line in his Fortec Motorsports racer and dropped to sixth. Fastest lap proved to be his consolation prize in a race where he had hoped to record another win for the Racing Steps Foundation.

As Quinn fell back, Luis Leeds (TRS Arden) and Ross Martin (Fortec) were the immediate beneficiaries, moving up to second and third respectively and they proved to be Fewtrell’s closest challengers. However, the 16-year-old kart star had enough in hand to maintain a sufficient gap throughout, preventing his pursuers from mounting an attack.

James Pull (Carlin) in fourth and Sennan Fielding (JHR Developments) in fifth completed a breakaway group which spanned from Fewtrell down to Quinn; with this collection of six drivers capable of consistently lapping in the low 1m 08s bracket.

An ecstatic Fewtrell commented: “I needed to get a good start and be consistent because I knew I had the pace to keep the gap. As soon as I got that gap it stayed the same. Breaking the tow was key.

“Three podiums is brilliant, especially with one of them coming in the reverse grid race and to finish the weekend off with a win is great. Fighting with a lot of second year drivers is obviously a challenge, but I’m learning every race and getting more confident with the car and its Ford EcoBoost technology”.

Added second place man Leeds: “It was an alright weekend. Second in every race session apart from race two this weekend. I hope to get my first win pretty soon, but consistency is key and I’ve said that all along because my goal is to win the championship. I cannot wait for Thruxton. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with myself for three weeks until then!”

It was a landmark race for Ross Martin whose third place netted him his first Rookie class win of the campaign, and demonstrated that the Formula Kart Stars (FKS) champion is taking full advantage of his fully funded prize drive in the UK’s official FIA F4 series.

“I didn’t have a great start to the weekend but what an end”, enthused Martin. “The car felt amazing throughout and I dealt with the pressure well at the start. FKS have been rooting for me to get on the top step of the podium so to get my first Rookie win this early on is fantastic and hopefully my mentor Allan McNish managed to watch the race on television.”

There was drama early on as the field was forced to complete an additional formation lap when Zane Goddard’s Double R racer ground to a halt on the way to the grid.

Carlin’s DeFrancesco added to the excitement when the racing got underway as he rejoined the track following an off at the exit of Craner Curves, only to force several cars to take evasive action when he reappeared on the asphalt at Old Hairpin.

Jamun’s Jamie Caroline scythed through the midfield once again to make his way from 14th to seventh. The highlight of his race a robust overtaking manoeuvre on TRS Arden’s Rafael Martins who would follow the Pirtek Racing sponsored driver home in eighth.

Another stellar pass came from JHR’s Billy Monger who perfectly judged his move on Dane Nicolai Kjaergaard into Redgate on lap four and would later squeeze by Jerseyman Jack Butel on the final lap to finish on the fringes of the points in 11th.

Redgate is also where Martins showcased his race craft; brilliantly turning defence (brought about by team-mate Jack Martin glued to his gearbox) into attack as he tore past Hayek who had leapt in front of the Brazilian earlier on in proceedings. Martin would subsequently follow in Martins’ wheel tracks to also get ahead of the Aussie F4 graduate who clung on to the last points paying position.

It was a frustrating race for Carlin’s Petru Florescu who had to settle for 13th having hoped to make more progress through the field from the back of the grid after fighting at the front in race two earlier in the day.

It’s a result that sees Florescu relinquish his championship lead after Fewtrell’s superb performance this weekend. Attention now turns to rounds seven, eight and nine of season at Thruxton on 7-8 May. All eyes will be on Fewtrell to see if he can maintain this phenomenal run of form and whether Leeds can finally join the roster of maiden Ford EcoBoost-powered winners having now collected a trio of second place finishes.

Provisional results Round 6, Donington Park 17 April, 2016
15 laps / 29.69 miles
1 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin 17m 18.620s / 102.78 mph
2 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +1.063s
3 Ross MARTIN / GBR / Fortec +1.469s
4 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +2.618s
5 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +2.931s
6 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec +3.481s
7 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Jamun +9.939s
8 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +10.798s
9 Jack MARTIN / GBR / Arden +12.594s
10 Harry HAYEK / AUS / Jamun +13.942 etc

Fastest lap Quinn 1:08.338 / 104.25 mph

Rookie Class 1 R Martin; 2 Quinn; 3 J Martin; 4 Kjaergaard

Full results

Provisional championship standings
1 Fewtrell 89; =2 Florescu 76; =2 Fielding 76; 4 Pull 69; 5 Leeds 68; 6 Quinn 55; 7 Caroline 46; 8 Martins 45; 9 Goddard 18 etc
Rookie Class 1 Quinn 136; 2 J Martin 97; 3 R Martin 76; 4 Kjaergaard 72 etc