James Hinchcliffe tests all three steps of the podium over weekend events. TORONTO, ON. (July 21, 2003) 16 year-old karting hotshoe James Hinchcliffe (Mobil1 / NOCO Racing) competed in his second career 2 liter event this past weekend at the...
James Hinchcliffe tests all three steps of the podium over weekend events.
TORONTO, ON. (July 21, 2003) 16 year-old karting hotshoe James Hinchcliffe (Mobil1 / NOCO Racing) competed in his second career 2 liter event this past weekend at the Bridgestone / FormulaCar Magazine F2000 racing series located at the Mosport Driver Development Circuit (MDDC) just outside of Toronto, ON. A series that consists of four weekends and a total of twelve races will see drivers draw for their cars at the beginning of each race day.
Again, this weekend Hinchcliffe showed his consistency which saw him garner his 6th podium finish in the past seven races. The event weekend kicked off Friday morning and immediately went well for the young Hinchcliffe as he lapped the MDDC in just over one minute to take the 4th position on the grid. "I had a good run in qualifying but want to improve in the race" stated Hinchcliffe. From the drop of the green, the Oakville resident went on the charge moving into third position even though he was in an under powered car. A race long battle between veteran series driver Mark Pavan saw the rookie speedster finish just behind the former series champion.
After a podium finish on Friday, Hinchcliffe set his goal high as he was looking for his first win of the season. James showed his grit and determination from the opening lap of qualifying to take the pole position by 8 tenths of a second. "I am pleased to take the pole and hopefully can run away to a win in the race." Hinchcliffe set the pace early with some blistering but consistent race laps. A brake problem just past the halfway flags saw Hinchcliffe over shoot turn 12 and end up on pit lane. While obeying the pit lane speed limit, James lost the lead and re-entered the racing surface in 2nd position. With the brake problem continuing, James put his head down and concentrated on his driving lines and down shifting techniques. He continued to lap the circuit faster then any other driver and with three laps remaining regained the top spot from Geordie Ledson and went on to win the race. "It is a great feeling to win here especially on the historic grounds of Mosport. I would like to thank my sponsors as well as Brett Goodman of the Bridgestone/Firestone Racing Academy for a great day."
Sunday morning's race was very eventful for Hinchcliffe which saw his name go into the series record books. Hinchcliffe would start the race from the third position behind series veteran and driving school coach Pavan and points leader Matt Champagne. Hinchcliffe and Pavan immediately got by Champagne and began an intense battle which saw them swap the top spot several times. "It was fun out there, I learned a lot from following Mark. He is a great driver." Hinchcliffe followed Pavan and tried several times to make a pass but eventually got the short end of the stick as he ended up 2nd in the closest finish in series history. "My car was a little weak down the straights, so even though I was a bit better then mark through the technical bits and under braking, he was fast in just the right spots to keep me behind him. But it was great fun racing with Mark" explained a delighted Hinchcliffe in a phone interview from the track.
James Hinchcliffe's next ontrack event will be in two weeks time as he will be competing in his 125cc shifterkart in the CART Stars of Tomorrow race in Norway, IL.
James is actively seeking sponsorship money to move up the motorsports ladder and advance his career. A ride in the North American Fran-Am Championship or the Barber Dodge development series will see this young gun turn into a true champion. Hinchcliffe will also be submitting his resume and hopefully competing for one of four seats in the Canadian Formula Ford Championship that are being offered by AIM Autosport.