Barton Mawer Wins at Castle Combe A sensational performance at Castle Combe this weekend has seen Australian Barton Mawer continue to dominate the National Class of the 2005 British Formula 3 International Series. Barton had never visited the...
Barton Mawer Wins at Castle Combe
A sensational performance at Castle Combe this weekend has seen Australian Barton Mawer continue to dominate the National Class of the 2005 British Formula 3 International Series.
Barton had never visited the fast, and demanding track before and took a while to get up to speed, but once he did he was untouchable, setting a new lap record in his class and winning the second race.
Barton struggled to get a clean lap in the first qualifying session after being caught in traffic. The session was also stopped twice due to accidents on the track making it difficult to be consistently quick. As a result Barton qualified well back in 5th position. Second qualifying was much better for Barton, finishing less than one hundredth of a second from pole position to qualify 2nd in the National Class.
"I was a little conservative in the first session because I was still learning the track, but I was much more confident in the second session. I was really comfortable in the car and think we will have a very good car for Sunday's two races."
Race 1 started extremely well for Barton, moving up from 5th on the grid to be 2nd by the first corner. Unfortunately in turn 2 Barton was hit from behind, causing him to spin off the track. He was able to get the car back on the track undamaged, but was at the very rear of the field. Determined not to give up, Barton put his head down and was quickly on the tail end of the pack and moving back up the order. On his way to 5th in the National Class Barton set some impressive lap times, breaking the current National Class lap record by 3 tenths of a second.
"I am really disappointed to have dropped so far back on the opening lap, we have an excellent race package today and I think we could have been able to challenge for the race win. I am happy to pick up the 8 points for 5th and the extra point for the fastest lap."
Race 2 was a dominant lights to flag victory for Barton. Once again he made an excellent start to go into turn one ahead of pole sitter Hollings. Barton was pushed hard by Hollings in the opening part of the race before being able to pull away from him a little. Barton was also able to pass one of the Championship class runners to create a sizeable buffer between himself and Hollings. As he has done on a number of occasions this year, Barton spent much of the race fighting with drivers in the Championship Class rather than his Championship rivals in the National Class. Barton took yet another National Class win and finished just outside the top ten outright in 11th position.
"I was able to pull away from Hollings and the other National Class drivers throughout the race. I think they were fighting hard with each other which allowed me to set myself a comfortable pace for the race."
T-Sport team manger, Russell Eacott was pleased with how quickly Barton was able to improve over the weekend.
"Barton dug deep this weekend and was able to make significant improvements throughout the weekend. He was struggling in the first two sessions on Saturday, but he turned that around and comes away with a race win and the lap record. He continues to be the one to beat in the Championship."
Barton maintains his dominate position in the National Class Championship with a lead of 40 points over his closest rival and is looking forward to the opportunity to extend his lead when the series visits Italy and one of the international Formula 1 circuits, Monza, in two weeks time.
Barton received confirmation this weekend that he has received further financial support from Australia that will allow him to compete at Monza. This round will feature 3 races as it will also see the completion of one of the postponed races from another of the international rounds of the series held earlier this year at Spa in Belgium. Both races at Spa had to be abandoned due to thick fog that blanketed the track over the weekend.
Barton has never been to Monza before and is planning on spending a fair bit of time on his playstation in the next two weeks learning the track as much as he can hoping this will give him an advantage when they go out on the track.