AP: Beijing round six race notes

Abay scores maiden victory. Beijing, China -- Australian Sam Abay (18/Team E-Rain) scored his maiden Formula BMW Asia victory on the 2.3km Goldenport Circuit today with a perfect pole-to-flag win. The remaining podium places were both taken...

Abay scores maiden victory.

Beijing, China -- Australian Sam Abay (18/Team E-Rain) scored his maiden Formula BMW Asia victory on the 2.3km Goldenport Circuit today with a perfect pole-to-flag win. The remaining podium places were both taken by BMW Juniors: Dominic Storey (NZL/Eurasia Motorsport), taking his first podium finish of the season and first Rookie Cup victory, and team mate Daniel Ricciardo. BMW Junior James Grunwell (THA/Team Meritus) was 4th.

After six rounds, Rookie Earl Bamber (NZL/Team Meritus) remains at the top of the points table, but Abay is now just one point behind. Grunwell retains his number three position followed by Ricciardo, however Storey's performance elevates him one position to 5th. Positions in the Rookie Cup standings remain the same.

The hard work and comprehensive BMW Education & Coaching Programme are paying off for Storey and Ricciardo, and the pair are showing consistent improvement with each round. For Storey in particular, his podium finish and Rookie Cup victory represent a turning point in his Formula BMW Asia aspirations.

At the start, Abay got away well from pole, with Storey hot on his heels. Behind him, however, fellow Junior and team mate Daniel Ricciardo managed to get the jump on Thailand's James Grunwell (Team Meritus) to move into third by the first turn. Grunwell snatched back the position several laps later. Ricciardo kept his cool, however, and when Grunwell made a mistake, he was back into third. By this time, Storey had pulled out a gap which Ricciardo was unable to close by the chequered flag.

Said Abay: "It's just great to cross the line first. It's my first Formula BMW Asia victory and I hope there will be many more. It's a great moment for me, Australia, my team and all my supporters to be on the podium in Beijing."

Bahrain's Mohammed Al Baharna (Team E-Rain) recorded his best finish so far this season in 5th, ahead of Aaron Lim (MAS/Eurasia Motorsport).

Bamber, starting from the back of the grid after an electronic hitch in qualifying, ploughed through the field to 7th. He challenged Lim but there was no way the feisty karting ace was going to let him by.

Rounds 7 and 8 of Formula BMW Asia will be held over 20 laps each of Beijing's Goldenport Circuit tomorrow.

-bmw.asis

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Daniel Ricciardo , Aaron Lim , James Grunwell , Sam Abay , Earl Bamber , Dominic Storey