PAC: Series Sepang II Saturday race report

Rounds 3 and 4 Results Jefferies and Ilyas take maiden wins. Sepang, Malaysia -- Formula BMW Pacific Rookies Axcil Jefferies (ZIM/15/Eurasia Motorsport) and Fahmi Ilyas (MAS/17/E-Rain Racing) took their first series victories in Rounds 3 and 4...

Rounds 3 and 4 Results

Jefferies and Ilyas take maiden wins.

Sepang, Malaysia -- Formula BMW Pacific Rookies Axcil Jefferies (ZIM/15/Eurasia Motorsport) and Fahmi Ilyas (MAS/17/E-Rain Racing) took their first series victories in Rounds 3 and 4 respectively at Malaysia's Sepang International Circuit today.

Formula BMW Junior Jefferies needed just one overtaking manoeuvre to secure his win, while Ilyas jumped three positions to go from fourth on the grid to first in Round 4.

Putting in a solid performance was Ireland's Gary Thompson (16/E-Rain Racing) who finished second in both races. Thompson continues to lead both the Drivers Classification and the Rookie Cup standings. Rounding out the podium in Round 3 was Akhil Khushlani (IND/19/E-Rain Racing) and, in Round 4, Indonesian Rio Haryanto (16/Questnet Team Qi-Meritus).

While Jefferies managed a fourth-place finish in Round 4, Formula BMW Juniors Chris Wootton (AUS/20/Eurasia Motorsport) and Steel Guiliana (AUS/17/Atlantic Racing Team) were not as fortunate. Guiliana continued to improve, finishing 10th and 9th. Double pole-sitter Wootton had two incidents, one of which ended his race in Round 4.

To win his first Formula BMW Pacific race, Jefferies got by team mate Wootton at the first corner of the opening lap of the 10-lap race.

"It was my first time to be in the position to have an opportunity to win," Jefferies said. "I wanted to push very hard. Luckily I managed to break away and even though Gary (Thompson) came close near the end, I knew I had the car to win."

Ilyas had a reversal of fortunes in the two races. In Round 3, a racing incident put him back down the order, but he put all that behind him and took full advantage of his second row grid position for Round 4.

"In the second race, the car handled very well, I was able to brake later and could overtake three drivers," Ilyas said. "Everyone said to forget about race 1 [Round 3] and to have a fresh start and I was able to do that."

In Round 3, pole-sitter Wootton lost his pole advantage when team mate Jefferies overtook. Jefferies held the lead to the flag and, while Thompson came within three-tenths of a second, the Zimbabwean had pulled out a margin of almost a second at the line.

Wootton, whose strong qualifying had earlier left him on a high, finished 12th in Round 3 after an incident with Haryanto on the first corner of Lap 3.

Cao Hong Wei (CHN/16/Ao's Racing Team) had his day end early after an incident in Round 3, and was unable to start the second race. Guest Driver Antonio Martinez (ESP/17/Eurasia Motorsport) worked his way up from the back of the grid into seventh place. In Round 4, Martinez would do the same, finishing sixth.

There was plenty of action in Round 4. On the first lap, Team Holzer PFX teammates Calvin Wong (MAS/17) and Muhamad Alif Jafri (MAS/17) had a coming together, ending both of their races and bringing out the Safety Car. In a separate incident on the first lap, Khushlani and Haryanto touched, ending the Indian driver's race.

The cars were under the Safety Car until Lap 4. After the restart, pole-sitter Wootton continued to lead, while Ilyas and Thompson got by Jefferies, whose car had been damaged while under caution flags. Wootton, however, would have his race end when Ilyas made contact with the back of his car.

"I'm pretty devastated," Wootton said. "During Round 4, I had a perfect start and then again after the Safety Car. The results put me a long way behind in the championship and a long way behind this weekend as I must start from the back of the grid for tomorrow's races."

Ilyas apologized for the incident. "He was braking very early at the first corner and I was going at full throttle on the racing line," Ilyas said. "I feel so sorry, but there's nothing I can do."

Haryanto scored his podium finish by overtaking Jefferies on the final lap of the race.

Rounds 5 and 6 will take place Sunday at the Sepang International Circuit as part of the Asian Festival of Speed.

-credit: fbmw

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Akhil Khushlani , Chris Wootton , Axcil Jefferies , Calvin Wong , Fahmi Ilyas , Antonio Martinez , Rio Haryanto , Gary Thompson , Steel Guiliana , Martin Cao