Friday 30th January 2004 Lady Wigram Trophy Race, Christchurch, New Zealand Team BRM have retained the Lady Wigram Trophy after a stunning performance last weekend. Team BRM ventured to Christchurch, New Zealand, Ruapuna circuit for ...
Friday 30th January 2004
Lady Wigram Trophy Race, Christchurch, New Zealand
Team BRM have retained the Lady Wigram Trophy after a stunning performance last weekend.
Team BRM ventured to Christchurch, New Zealand, Ruapuna circuit for the second year in a row to race for the Lady Wigram Trophy. Our team finished 1st and 2nd in the event last year with Darren Palmer winning.
This year our two 301 Dallara Speiss Opel cars were to be driven by our 2003 Rookie of the Year, Karl Reindler. Karl was joined at the last minute by 2003 Australian Driver Champion, Daniel Gaunt, who being a Kiwi was keen to win this prestigious event. Our 398 car was to be driven by New Zealand Speedsport Scholarship winner, Nic Jordan, who was making the big step from FVee to F3.
Testing on Thursday saw Reindler suffer a massive accident hitting a tyre barrier surrounding a marshal's post and damaging the car. The Team BRM crew were able to repair it and send him out for the last run of the day where he posted the fastest time.
Daniel Gaunt acquitted himself quickly to the more sophisticated F3 cars and was quickly doing competitive times.
Young Nic Jordan instantly revealed talent, which would be proven as the weekend progressed.
Qualifying 1 Saturday saw lap times 1.5 seconds faster than last year with pole for Race 1 going to Karl Reindler followed by Daniel Gaunt and in 3rd James Cressey. The surprise of the day was Jordan qualifying in the 4th only 1 second shy of the top 3.
Qualifying 2 saw the top times fall further with Gaunt coming out on pole with a 1.18.1 followed by Reindler .05 second behind and Cressey 3rd. Once again Jordan put in an impressive performance for the 4th place.
Race 1 had some changes when Starion Team Director, Paul Grimm, discovered a loophole in the regulations for the meeting and fitted new tyres. Team BRM Technical Director, Ian Richards, quickly worked out that our best strategy would be to run on current tyres for Race 1 and fit new tyres for Race 2. Cressey opted for the opposite.
A poor start by Reindler and Gaunt saw Cressey come through from row 2 to lead the race. Reindler and Gaunt soon regained their momentum and a wonderful 3-way battle commenced for the whole 25 lap race. Three very talented young drivers racing hard against each other. The final result was Cressey, Gaunt, Reindler.
Our other car driven by Nic Jordan was running in 4th position when an off track excursion saw a wheel seriously damaged.
Race 2 had both Team BRM cars on new tyres and Cressey electing to run his Race 1 tyres. A poor start again by Reindler and Gaunt let Cressey through to lead with Reindler being hit by a hard charging Caratti ending up in the dirt. The race between Gaunt and Cressey was intense with several lead changes and finally Gaunt producing a very daring outside pass on Cressey coming onto the main straight, from then he was never headed.
Reindler recovered from his disastrous first corner to chase Cressey down from a 20 second deficit to be only 0.5 second behind him at the chequered flag.
Nic Jordan had an uneventful race chasing Caratti when he had an unexpected off track excursion which resulted in front suspension damage.
Daniel Gaunt the local Auckland driver who had never driven a Formula 3 before this weekend showed his undeniable talent.
Technical Director, Ian Richards, on analysing Gaunt said "he is one of the most polished drivers I have ever seen." Gaunt is currently working to secure a budget to move up from the F4000 to the international F3 cars.
"We are keen to run Gaunt as a team-mate to the wonderfully talented Reindler who showed just why he was named F3 Rookie of the Year." "To recover from a huge accident, set pole and race with proven drivers like Cressey and Gaunt shows that Reindler will be one of the favourites for the 2004 F3 championship" said Team Owner, Bronte Rundle.
Nic Jordan at 15 years of age, possibly the youngest F3 driver in the world can now prove to his supporters that he can drive these cars and hopefully will be seen in a Team BRM Trophy class car in 2004.
The first round of the 2004 Australian Formula 3 Championship will be run at the 2004 Clipsal 500 Adelaide from March 18.