TEAM BRM SETTING RECORDS WITH 2006 FORMULA 3 CAMPAIGN Team BRM driver Ben Clucas has furthered his 2006 Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship lead following another weekend of almost complete domination at Eastern Creek last ...
TEAM BRM SETTING RECORDS WITH 2006 FORMULA 3 CAMPAIGN
Team BRM driver Ben Clucas has furthered his 2006 Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship lead following another weekend of almost complete domination at Eastern Creek last weekend.
Clucas scored a pole position, two fastest laps and lead every lap en route to two race victories at the 3.9km Sydney circuit at the weekend, and has now extended his championship point's buffer to 60 points with three rounds remaining.
Clucas' successes were his eighth and ninth race victories of the season, meaning that the British driver now has more race wins than scored by 2005 champion Aaron Caratti in his victorious year.
The Team BRM / John Deere / Gawler Farm Machinery #84 car lead both races last weekend from the start, Clucas never headed throughout each of the 14-lap events.
He won the first race by almost six seconds - setting the quickest race lap on the penultimate tour -- whilst the second was won by a similar margin.
"I really liked the circuit," Clucas said.
"It's very fast, very enjoyable and very challenging and I think it's the best we've been to this year.
"I was able to get a good start in each race which is where we struggled at Mallala and Phillip Island. From there it was just a case of taking it easy through the oil (in the second race) and then putting my head down and extending the margin."
"I was pushing very hard to get the fastest lap in race two and I was able to get the extra point on the last lap. It's still not a perfect 44 points for the weekend, but it's not bad!"
That followed yet another strong qualifying performance where Clucas stole the race one pole position by one of the smallest margins this season - .04 of a second.
Second on the grid for the second race came after Tim Macrow posted a last-minute pole lap in the second session on Saturday.
Despite it being his first visit to the Sydney circuit -- with no pre event testing available -- Clucas was also the fastest car on Friday practice day -- a result that set him up for the strong weekend.
"Nine out of the ten races -- you've got to say that it's looking pretty good for the team so far," Said team BRM owner Bronte Rundle.
"It's especially good when you look at the fact that it could have been ten out of ten if not due to the broken exhaust that cost Ben a race win in Tasmania.
"Ben drove as well as ever this weekend and delivered yet another stunning performance. It's a true reward to the team for their hard work." He said.
A Look at the season's statistics emphasizes the level of domination the #84 car has experienced this season.
Ben has lead in every race this season, amassing a staggering 136 laps lead out of 182 contested -- 75% of the laps this year.
His win tally (nine from ten starts) lifts him to fourth on the all-time Australian Formula 3 Winners list -- behind Paul Stephenson (17 wins), Peter Hackett (12) and James Manderson (10), whilst he is second on the list for most wins in a season -- trailing only Stephenson who notched 11 race wins in the 1999 season.
Clucas has taken eight pole positions (From a possible ten) and now holds the Formula 3 lap records at both Symmons Plains and Mallala.
The next round of the Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship will be at the Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit in late August.