Seventh heaven for Ford-powered Lando at Silverstone

  • Norris extends his championship lead with win number seven
  • Lando leads home a Carlin 1-2 ahead of Colton Herta
  • Toby Sowery third for MBM Motorsport’s maiden podium finish

SILVERSTONE 26 SEPTEMBER, 2015 – Lando Norris boosted his MSA Formula Championship title hopes in style this afternoon, the Ford EcoBoost-powered driver claiming his seventh win of the season to extend his points lead. Fifteen-year-old Lando’s Carlin-prepared car led all the way from the first turn despite intense pressure from his team-mate Colton Herta to win by four-tenths of a second.

Norris seized the advantage off the line, getting away more smartly from P2 than did Double R’s Matheus Leist, who was starting from the pole for the first time after showing Norris and the rest the way to tackle a qualifying lap on the 1.6-mile Silverstone National circuit. Worse was soon to come for Leist, who out-braked himself into Maggotts and slipped to fourth behind Herta and MBM Motorsport’s Toby Sowery.

By the end of the second lap and thanks to Leist’s error, Norris led Herta by nine-tenths of a second, but that was as comfortable an advantage as Lando would be allowed for the duration of the race as the American, the youngest in the field, posted fastest lap after fastest lap in his pursuit. By the end of the fifth lap Colton was a car’s length behind and looking to take advantage of any errors which Lando might make.

The long slipstream down Wellington straight offered Herta the chance to close in on his team-mate, and twice he tried to carry that momentum through with a challenge at Luffield. Norris was equal to the moves, however, and fended him off each time.

Said Norris from the podium after the second successive Carlin 1-2: “It was mainly down to the start and managing to get in front, and then I had Colton pressuring me for the whole race. There were a couple of times he had a good go at me; he did a good job. Winning today is good for my championship hopes; it will be hard for me in race two, and then hopefully race three tomorrow [from which Lando will start from pole] can be just like this…”

Added Herta: “It’s hard to pass here; I thought it would be easier. These are such fast corners. I had two or three goes at it but Luffield is really not a great passing place.”

After his first-lap error, Leist quickly composed himself to put pressure on third-placed Sowery but his pace faded as the race wore on, allowing Toby a relatively easy run to the MBM team’s maiden MSA Formula podium finish. “It was a bit of a dull way to get my first podium,” said Toby, “because I was on my own for most of the time. The start was quite hard and Matheus was close to me early on but then he dropped back. I’m really happy for the team to get their first podium.”

Norris’s closest championship rival, TRS Arden man Ricky Collard, started fifth and finished fifth, shadowing Leist to the line and finishing comfortably clear of Fortec driver Dan Ticktum in sixth. Ticktum was later excluded from the results of the Silverstone meeting.

JHR Developments driver Sennan Fielding made steady progress in the early laps after a troubled qualifying to improve to sixth from his 11th-place start slot but could do little about reeling in those in front. JTR’s Dan Baybutt collected seventh, his best finish since Oulton Park in June, ahead of TRS Arden man Sandy Mitchell; with Ticktum’s exclusion, Baybutt was the Rookie class winner, ahead of Mitchell.

James Pull battled through from 15th on the grid for Fortec to take ninth, ahead of Rafael Martins (SWB Motorsport), Enaam Ahmed (TRS Arden), Jack Butel (JHR), Petru Florescu (Carlin) and Louise Richardson (Richardson Racing).

With Double R’s perennially unlucky Tarun Reddy the only non-finisher after a seventh-lap retirement, the finishing order was completed by Falcon returnee Darius Karbaley; Josh Smith, whose Fortec car spun to last on the opening lap after contact from Ahmed; and Richardson Racing man Greg Holloway.

Amended provisional results Round 25 Silverstone 26 September 2015
21 laps / 34.45 miles
1 Lando NORRIS / GBR / Carlin 20m 00.491s / 103.30mph
2 Colton HERTA / USA / Carlin +0.403s
3 Toby SOWERY / GBR / MBM +3.929s
4 Matheus LEIST / BRA / Double R +6.144s
5 Ricky COLLARD / GBR / TRS Arden +6.415s
6 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +14.878s
7 Daniel BAYBUTT / GBR / JTR +15.440s
8 Sandy MITCHELL / GBR / TRS Arden +15.595s
9 James PULL / GBR / Fortec +16.292s
10 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / SWB +19.002s etc
Fastest lap Herta 56.607s / 104.32mph Est Rec

Rookie class 1 Baybutt; 2 Mitchell; 3 Martins; 4 Enaam AHMED / GBR / TRS Arden; 5 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin; 6 Darius KARBALEY / GBR / Falcon; 7 Josh SMITH / GBR / Fortec

Grid for Round 26 Mitchell – Baybutt – Fielding – Daniel Ticktum – Collard – Leist – Sowery – Herta – Norris – Pull etc

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