PAC: Round four Sepang race report

Jamison grabs championship lead after hard-fought victory. Sepang, Malaysia -- Hong Kong's Ross Jamison (18/Meritus) climbed to the top of the Formula BMW Pacific Driver Classification after a hard-fought victory in Round 4 today. After an ...

Jamison grabs championship lead after hard-fought victory.

Sepang, Malaysia -- Hong Kong's Ross Jamison (18/Meritus) climbed to the top of the Formula BMW Pacific Driver Classification after a hard-fought victory in Round 4 today. After an intense 10-lap race, the remaining podium places went to drivers from North and South America, with Sean McDonagh (USA/18/Team E-Rain) 2nd, and exciting young Colombian Gabby Chaves (Atlantic Racing Team) taking his first series podium finish.

Pole-sitter and winner of the previous round, Formula BMW Junior Simon Moss (RSA/16/Mahara) had a disappointing outing after he was caught up in a series of altercations at the start. Jamison is now eight points ahead of the South African, while McDonagh overtakes Malaysia's Melvin Moh (19/Team Holzer PFX) to go 3rd.

Top Rookie finisher was Malaysia's Arvin Roslan (Meritus/18), 6th overall, who now goes 2nd in the Rookie Cup standings.

Off the start, Moss wasn't able to capitalise on his pole position advantage, and Moh and Jamison were up to 1st and 2nd at the first turn, however Japan's Ryuichi Nara (19/E-Rain) dramatically ran into the rear of the Malaysian. With drivers taking evasive action to avoid the incident, the melee continued into the second turn. Jamison emerged in the lead, with Chaves in hot pursuit and McDonagh in 3rd. Moss was also caught up in the action, putting him right down the field.

Guest driver Kazeem Manzur, who started from the back of the grid for the second time today following a Stewards decision on a technical infringement during qualifying, charged through the field and was up to 5th by the end of the opening lap. Behind him was Nara, who had continued despite the damage sustained during his incident with Moh. Sadly for Moh, who had recorded his first podium finish in the earlier race, the crash damage meant he was only able to 14th.

Chaves kept Jamison well in his sights, looking for a way past the more experienced racer. However, McDonagh wasn't ready to let the pair get away, and closed the gap. The American piled the pressure on his South American adversary, but the young Colombian defended brilliantly. Mid-way through the race, the trio were on the limit, recording almost identical lap times.

With just two laps to go, McDonagh made his move with a faultless manoeuvre past Chaves to go 2nd, and held his position to the flag.

Jamison was thrilled to have got his championship campaign back on track: "It was mayhem at the first turn, and I came out of turn two in the lead. I snuck down the inside and I'm glad to have got away with it! I made a few mistakes and allowed Gabby to close up a bit, but it's always great to have two drivers fighting behind you."

Chaves was pleased to take his first Formula BMW Pacific podium finish, and to have stayed out of trouble at the start: "I had a good start. I tried to play it safe, but the guys in front of me went a little crazy. I felt fast, and I was trying to catch Ross and keep it tight. Sean got by me though. I made a couple of mistakes, but that's how you learn."

The remaining three races of the weekend will be held on the 2.27km North Track of the Sepang Circuit, the first of which will be held tomorrow (Saturday) following practice and qualifying sessions.

-credit: fbmw pac

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Ross Jamison , Melvin Moh , Kazeem Manzur , Arvin Roslan , Ryuichi Nara