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Dodhiwala and Singh to battle for Vento title in season-finale

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Dodhiwala and Singh to battle for Vento title in season-finale
By:
Sep 29, 2016, 6:10 AM

Championship protagonists Ishaan Dodhiwala and Karminder Singh are set to engage in a feisty duel to win the 2016 season of Volkswagen Vento Cup.

Race winner Karminder Singh, second place Ishaan Dodhiwala, third place Aditya Pawar
Karminder Singh
Ishaan Dodhiwala
Ishaan Dodhiwala, Karminder Singh and Keith Desouza
Karminder Singh
Starting grid
Ishaan Dodhiwala
Karminder Pal Singh
Karminder Singh
Keith Desouza
Karminder Singh leads
Niranjan Todkari
Keith Desouza

After three rounds in the southern cities of Coimbatore and Chennai, the season will come to a conclusion at Greater Noida’s Buddh International Circuit this weekend.

Dodhiwala heads into the final round as the championship leader, 34 points clear of Delhi’s Singh. The Hyderabad-based driver has won four of the eight races so far - and is optimistic about his title chances on the eve of the final round.

“It feels good to come back to BIC for the final round and the fact that I have raced here before gives me confidence to take on the pressures that come with the season finale,’’ he said.

“This is the time to put in my 100% and translate this lead into an overall victory.”’

However, with 120 points on offer in the two races across the weekend, Singh can easily overturn Dodhiwala’s advantage and claim a title that slipped through his hands during the last two years.

“Even though I am 34 points behind Ishaan, I am hopeful of making a strong comeback in the final round. It is important for me to stay consistent and keep a steady pace,’’ he said.

“Qualifying will be very important – a good position on the grid will definitely help me in getting an upper hand in the final round.”

“And of course, Delhi is my home ground and it is always been a special track to win at!.”

Vento Cup rookie Keith Desouza has an outside shot of winning the title, although his chances were severely diminished after an off-colour third round in Chennai.

“I am quite happy about how I am placed in the championship right now and feel confident heading into the final round,’’ said Desouza, who trails Dodhiwala by 84 points.

"BIC is the only track in the country that I haven't won a race at. Looking forward to changing that this weekend!"

The Goa-based driver needs luck as much as speed to close in and go past Dodhiwala and Singh, who have decent points advantage in their favour. 

Behind Desouza, Niranjan Todkari looks a secured fourth having notched up his maiden win in Round 2, with Jeet Jhabakh on fifth being chased by Aditya Pawar.

Jhabakh has a 110 points lead over Hatim Shabbir in the Juniour Drivers' standings and looks set to clinch the title and secure a drive in 2017's Vento Cup senior category.

Meanwhile, the top three are locked in the title battle, all vying for a drive in the MRF F1600 series, with the overall champion winning a free seat for the 2017 season.

The final round of the Vento Cup will run concurrently to Asia Road Racing Championship, with the action beginning with two practice sessions on Thursday.

Championship standings after Round 3 - Top 10:

Pos

Driver

Total Points

1

Ishaan Dodhiwala

408

2

Karminder Pal Singh

376

3

Keith Desouza

324

4

Niranjan Todkari

300

5

Jeet Jhabakh

220

6

Aditya Pawar

214

7

Amit Mete

192

8

Hatim Shabbir

178

9

Sree Venkata Teja

170

10

Arfath Mohammed

170

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Chennai II Vento Cup: Dodhiwala doubles up with Race three win

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Chennai II Vento Cup: Dodhiwala doubles up with Race three win

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Buddh Vento Cup: Dodhiwala takes all-important pole in finale

Buddh Vento Cup: Dodhiwala takes all-important pole in finale
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