In what proved to be a disastrous day for Formula Ford Championship leader Robert Wolk, it was 17-year old Donovan Howard who stepped up to the plate to take the overall win for the day in round six of the Vodacom Power Tour at East London ...
In what proved to be a disastrous day for Formula Ford Championship leader Robert Wolk, it was 17-year old Donovan Howard who stepped up to the plate to take the overall win for the day in round six of the Vodacom Power Tour at East London today.
Howard (Associated Auto / Wap Alto Mygale) did not win either of the day's two races, but a second place finish in each race was enough to give him his first overall win in the category.
Hometown hero Wolk, 20, qualified his AfintaPart Mygale in pole position, but it was fellow front row starter Jayde Kruger (Wap Alto Mygale) who got the jump on the championship leader at the start. Kruger then promptly spun on the first lap, forcing Wolk to leave the circuit in avoidance. He would go no further.
The incident left 22-year old David Veringa (Sabat Batteries / Playstation 2 Mygale) to convert his third place start into his first win of the year, including setting the fastest lap of the meeting. It was a welcome win for last season's runner-up after enduring a tough season to date.
Veringa beat Armani Jamrozinski (Diesel / Pilot Freight Van Diemen) by 2.6 seconds to the flag, before the latter was excluded from the results for not reporting to parc ferme after the race. The same penalty for the same reason befell Craig Allan (City Lodge/Audio Dynamics Van Diemen), who had finished in fifth place.
Jamrozinski's exclusion promoted Howard, who had finished just 0.3sec behind the 18-year old former race winner, to second place. Howard, in turn, finished six seconds ahead of 20-year old Sean Petterson (Lesdonnees Mygale), the latter taking the first podium of his career.
Marc Murray (Rotax Max Challenge Van Diemen) came home in fourth place ahead of a recovering Kruger and veteran Allen Meyer (ADE Mygale).
The second race also proved to be short-lived for Wolk, as he and first race winner Veringa clashed at the first corner, forcing both into retirement. Their retirement left Jamrozinski, Howard and Kruger to indulge in a mighty struggle for victory, with the trio finishing in that order just 0.231 sec apart. It was Jamrozinski's first win of the year.
Marc Murray fought off Petterson by less than a second for fourth place, with Allan taking sixth ahead of Ford Development driver Jennifer Murray (Ford Credit / Ford Racing Van Diemen). Jennifer retired after just three laps in race one with a mechanical problem.
Howard's two second place finishes saw him leap-frog Veringa into third place in the points standings, albeit by just three points. With second placed Stevie Morris moving across to Production Car racing, Wolk extended his series lead by one point (for fastest qualifier) despite not finishing either of the races.
<pre> Championship points after round 6: 1) Robert Wolk 97 2) Steven Morris 70 3) Donovan Howard 54 4) David Veringa 51 5) Jayde Kruger 43 6) Armani Jamrozinski 37