NA-F2000: Sebring: Round one race report

Sellers Captures First Win In Dominant Fashion SEBRING, FLA. (March 14, 2002) --Bryan Sellers, of Centerville, Ohio won Round One of the 2002 Formula Ford 2000 Zetec Championship season at Sebring International Raceway. Completing the top-three...

Sellers Captures First Win In Dominant Fashion

SEBRING, FLA. (March 14, 2002) --Bryan Sellers, of Centerville, Ohio won Round One of the 2002 Formula Ford 2000 Zetec Championship season at Sebring International Raceway. Completing the top-three was Tonis Kasemets, of Mundelein, Ill. and Travis Irving, of Chino Hills, Calif. Doug Smith, of Plantation, Fla., won the American Continental Championship class.

Following qualifying by all the other classes competing at the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, Round One of the Zetec Championship got under way in the late afternoon. Starting from pole position, Sellers maintained his lead into turn one at the green flag. By the end of the first lap, Sellers, driving the No. 3 Yes Network/3 Dimensional Services/Arai Helmets/Sparco/Cape Motorsports Van Diemen Ford, had established a two second lead.

Behind Sellers, Kasemets and Irving began a race long battle for second place. Kasemets, in the No. 9 MKINd/Flexovit/TMI RedLine Oil Van Diemen Ford, maintained second place until lap six, when Irving took the position. On the following lap, Kasemets re-passed Irving in the No. 85 Great Central Transport PR1 Motorsports Van Diemen Ford. For the remainder of the race, Kasemets held off Irving as Irving battled electrical problems. As the duo battled for position, Sellers built his lead by as much as a second a lap, setting the race's fastest lap, 2:05.686 (105.978 mph). At the checkered flag, Sellers had led every lap en route to his first career Zetec Championship victory.

"It's great honor to win the season-opener," said Sellers. "I was surprised by how I pulled away at the start. I figured Tonis [Kasemets] and Travis [Irving] must have had trouble and just concentrated on running clean laps. The Cape team has done great job, but I know tomorrow is a new race and anything can happen in racing."

"This is fantastic," said Kasemets. "After last year, this is a great way to start a season. I'm looking forward to racing we these guys again tomorrow."

"The car was great at the start of the race," said Irving. "As the race progressed I had power problems and Tonis was able to pull away."

"This is very special," said Smith, whose grandfather was a co-founder of the 12 Hours of Sebring. "I hoped something like this would happen, and it means a lot to me given my family ties to this race."

Completing the top-five was Jefffey Jones, of Sarasota, Fla., who started fifth and Sean McIntosh, of Coquitlam, B.C., Can, who started seventh.

- www.usf2000.com

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About this article
Series Other open wheel
Drivers Bryan Sellers , Sean McIntosh , Tonis Kasemets , Doug Smith