As easy as one, two, three - BRM Sweeps 'em at Mallala! Their rivals were warned about the possible home track advantage in the weeks leading up to the meeting, but all of them failed to take heed today as Team BRM dominated the two qualifying...
As easy as one, two, three - BRM Sweeps 'em at Mallala!
Their rivals were warned about the possible home track advantage in the weeks leading up to the meeting, but all of them failed to take heed today as Team BRM dominated the two qualifying sessions at Mallala raceway, sweeping the front row for both races and taking the first three grid positions for tomorrow's first race.
In a dominating display by all three cars, team BRM now has the best possible shot imaginable to take a much-wanted round victory in front of their enthusiastic home crowd at the rural 2.6km circuit tomorrow, and also help drivers Karl Reindler and Nic Jordan in their respective championship battles.
Perfect conditions at the track meant that fast times were produced by all competitors, with the majority of the field lapping substantially underneath the existing F3 lap record at Mallala.
For Karl Reindler, driving the championship leading #19 Dallara, today's two sessions were a chance to find some speed out of the car, after being outpaced slightly by f3 rookie teammate Tim Slade. And find some speed he did, setting an incredible 1m03.8858 to become the first F3 driver officially underneath the 1m04 bracket for the weekend.
Reindler backed up his awesome display in the second session, setting a 1m04.375 to add two championship points to his lead, now extended to six points over closest rival Chris Gilmour.
"What can I say, two pole positions! I can't complain!" said Reindler. "This is the third consecutive meeting in a row that the car has been perfect in qualifying, which really makes my job easier." He said. "My tyres are still really good for the races tomorrow, so we are looking in really good shape."
F3 rookie Tim Slade again created a massive impact on the Formula 3 paddock in today's two sessions, placing his Dallara on the front row for both of tomorrow's sessions.
Slade carried over his considerable practice pace from yesterday, and only missed out on taking an historic pole position by one tenth of a second in the second of today's sessions.
Despite his impressive debut form, Slade was slightly disappointed with today's runs.
"I think perhaps we had a bit to good a day yesterday (Where he was fastest in both practice sessions) so I am a bit disappointed about missing pole today," Slade commented.
"The car felt a bit unbalanced today with the different track conditions, and we ended up chasing our tails for most of the day." He said.
"But I think we can go really well in tomorrow's races, so I am looking forward to it."
Nic Jordan inched to within ten points of a Trophy class championship win today, taking his Dallara F398 to his best ever qualifying position - 3rd for race one with a time of 1m04.8371 - just nine tenths behind his pole sitting team-mate.
Jordan backed up that performance with a fifth in the second session, this time just five-tenths from pole position. Justifiably, the teenage Kiwi sensation was pleased with his incredible performance.
"The track changed a lot today," said Jordan, echoing Slade's comments. "I am sure that I can find better times out of the car tomorrow in the races, so I will be trying my hardest." He said.
"But I am really happy with my third place for race one. Tomorrow I want to race with the leading cars."
With three cars right on the money, team owner Bronte Rundle was thrilled with the day's performances.
"To say our drivers exceeded our expectations today would be an understatement," he said. "It is brilliant to have three cars in the first three grid positions for tomorrow's races, and we are looking really good. It is also great that we have been able to inch closer again to the championship in Trophy Class with Nic, and the two points for Karl will help his case as well." He said.
The penultimate round of the Australian Formula 3 race will be conducted over two 16-lap races tomorrow, which could see the series leaving the circuit tomorrow night with a new Trophy Class champion.