Asaro solid at Snetterton. Toronto, Canada (September 02, 2002): Billy Asaro raced to three excellent results in British Formula Three Championship action at Snetterton Race Track last weekend. The twenty-year-old from Unionville, Ontario, ...
Asaro solid at Snetterton.
Toronto, Canada (September 02, 2002): Billy Asaro raced to three excellent results in British Formula Three Championship action at Snetterton Race Track last weekend. The twenty-year-old from Unionville, Ontario, Canada, who competes in the Scholarship Class took two seconds and a fourth on the 3.141-km, nine-turn circuit in Norfolk, England.
The unusually busy three-race weekend came as the result of a rain-out in May and the Snetterton schedule allowed time for a make-up race on Saturday. In that race, Asaro played it safe, starting and finishing fourth in class, but gaining several positions on the track as some of the Championship Class cars fell by the wayside.
"I took a very conservative approach this weekend, especially in the first race," Asaro said. "Early in races, when everyone is scrambling for position, it's easy to end up in an accident, so when things started looking dicey today, I just backed off. That paid off with a fourth-place finish and, with two more races this weekend, that's a good starting point."
In the first of the weekend's regularly scheduled races, held Sunday morning, Asaro qualified third in class and fifteenth overall amongst a total of 29 entries. He held his position through the first lap, but came under pressure from his Sweeney Racing teammate, Adam Carroll, who squeezed by on the next lap. On lap nine of 22, Carroll and Asaro were leading the Scholarship field, although separated by a couple of Championship Class runners, and storming to a Sweeney one-two. Asaro wanted to challenge for the class win, but elected to hold station rather than risk taking on the cars sandwiched between himself and Carroll.
"Drivers in the Championship Class don't like being passed by Scholarship cars," said Asaro. "I don't blame them because their cars are faster, but some of them would rather run you off the track than let you pass. I need points to reach second in the championship, so, it's better for me to give up a place than risk being put out of the race."
Asaro started the final race of the weekend quite a way down the grid, eighth in class. However, with some swift and intelligent racing, he was able to climb all the way to second. In the latter half of the race, he chased down a pack of Championship Class cars following the Scholarship Class leader. Asaro thought he could carefully negotiate his way up to challenge for the win, but quickly found himself pushed onto the grass. He maintained control and recovered, but decided not to press the issue further.
"I gave it a try, but got run off," said Asaro. "So I just thought, 'Okay, not today. I'll just take the points for second place.'
"I was very happy with the way I drove this weekend. When I came up behind a car, I tried to just fill the mirrors, get the guy worried and wait for a mistake. I was able to gain positions without risking my car. Sweeney Racing did a great job for me and must congratulate my teammate, Adam, for clinching the Scholarship Class title today. The battle for second is fierce, but I'll be doing my best to make it a one-two for Sweeney Racing."
There are now just four races left on the British Formula Three calendar. Two at Thruxton, September 14-15, and two at Donington Park, September 20-22.
Billy Asaro's official website can be found at www.billyasaro.com.