Formula Ford Championship - Round 4, Aldo Scribante, 29 May 2004.
Robert Wolk (AfintaPart Mygale) proved dominant in the fourth round of the Formula Ford Championship in Port Elizabeth yesterday, leading both races from start to finish.
Wolk started the first race from second on the grid behind Cristiano Morgado (Buondi Caffe' Mygale), but made a better start to jump into an immediate lead as the lights turned green. Englishman Ian Parsons (Nu-Phalt Van Diemen) moved into second place as Morgado and Steve Morris (InvestChem Mygale) disputed third.
Englishman Morris was on the outside of Morgado as the cars streamed into the first corner and tried to take his normal line. The cars collided, which saw Morris literally fly off the circuit, while Morgado was delayed in the incident and lost four places. The latter then ran wide at the final corner of the lap to lose another two places, putting him down in ninth at the end of the opening lap.
The incident left Parsons and Lesley Reynolds (Airnet Travel Mygale) to battle for second position, close behind Wolk. On lap nine, Reynolds pulled alongside Parsons on the outside of the hairpin, but could not get past. He tried the same move at the final corner of the lap, but turned in too early, the pair clashed and Reynolds spun off. In his eagerness to get going, he spun again on the wet grass, losing even more time.
Parsons survived the incident to finish second ahead of David Veringa (Sabat Mygale), who had driven a superb race to come through from near the back of the grid after problems in qualifying. Reynolds recovered to salvage fourth ahead of Ford Development driver Jennifer Murray (Ford Credit/Ford Racing Mygale) and Martin Robinson (HydroMobile Mygale).
Wolk started race two from pole position and once again made a perfect start to lead the field away, and remain unchallenged for the remainder of the race. Morgado once again made a poor start from second to drop to fifth, while Parsons was also slow off the line, dropping to third behind Reynolds.
Reynolds and Parsons once again attempted to go side-by-side through the last corner of the first lap. Again there was contact and Reynolds, who was on the outside, spun off the circuit.
That left Parsons to finish second behind Wolk, maintaining his championship lead by just one point from the latter. Morgado and Morris once again clashed as the former worked his way through to third at the finish. This time it was Morgado's error when he made a move up the inside of Morris at the hairpin, hitting the back of the Mygale and spinning it out of the way, and the race.
Robinson finished fourth ahead of Veringa, who once again put in a great drive from way down the order for fifth, although he slipped from second to third in the overall points standings. Allen Meyer (ETL Solutions Mygale) finished sixth ahead of a recovering Reynolds.
First Overall: Robert Wolk
"It was great to win again, and to close the gap to Ian in the championship. I was fortunate in that I got away well in both races and let the others fight it out behind me. It was sweet justice to win here today after I was punted out of the lead in this event last year."
Second Overall: Ian Parsons
"It was an OK result today. I am still leading the championship, although it is getting a bit too close for comfort. I struggled a bit in practice to find the right set-up and ran out of time to get it perfect. Having to learn the circuits at each event, I seem to be able to get on the pace, but just run short of track time to find that little extra to get a winning pace. As we have seen, when I go back to a circuit for the second time, I am much more competitive and can go for the wins."
Third Overall: David Veringa
"Considering our starting position, I am very pleased to have salvaged third overall. We really struggled to find the correct set-up during practice, which compromised our qualifying effort completely, and left us way down the grid. The races went much better though, and it was fun to fight my way through the field. I have dropped a few points to Ian and Robert though, so will have to try and make that up at the next round."
<pre> Championship points after round 4: 1) Ian Parsons 57 2) Robert Wolk 56 3) David Veringa 47 4) Lesley Reynolds 35 5) Brett Maybery 22 6) Martin Robinson 16