New Zealander Liam Lawson has become the first New Zealander to win a race and round of the CAMS Jayco Australian Formula 4 Championship today at Sandown Raceway.
The Team BRM driver started from pole – with the grid determined by the second fastest qualifying times from Friday – and won by over two seconds ahead of teammate and CAMS Foundation Rising Star Cameron Shields.
“It was a very intense race. I just focussed on the start; getting a good jump and then focussing of the first couple of laps and trying to get that gap,” Lawson said.
“I managed it, although towards the end there Cameron was closing on me fast. Really stoked with the result.”
“I think that was the longest 20 laps of my life! I think the 20 laps races make it a lot more physical but I think tomorrow, if it rains, it’ll take the pressure off a little bit.”
Simon Fallon climbed high in the first portion of the race to be placed third by the first lap, but the Rising Star was eventually overtaken by Race One winner Nick Rowe on lap three.
Rowe was later himself overhauled from third by Shields, in what was a valuable race for Shields after two prior DNFs.
“To finally get a result on the board, I started from fifth and got up to second on that race, it certainly was a very thrilling race with lots of close battles. I finally came out on top,” Shields said.
Suhle, who starts tomorrow’s opening race for Round Two from pole position, was Lawson’s closest rival in the Saturday finale for the majority of the race. However, the Zagame Autosport rookie was unable to hold off fellow hard charging Rising Star Shields for second place, after the two traded places throughout the final laps.
Suhle though was crowned the Burson Auto Parts Rookie of the Round based off his trio of podium results today. JRD’s Jordan Mazzaroli was the second-best placed rookie ahead of Aaron Love.
“It’s a great way to debut, we got the pole position as well; it’s great,” Suhle said.
“We didn’t really have any breaks on the track; it was pretty hectic all day. I really enjoyed it.”
Race Two winner Josh Denton, who was engaged in a thrilling battle with Race One winner Nick Rowe, enjoyed second place overall on the round podium after only being confirmed to enter on Thursday.
“It has been a whirlwind. It was a bit of a late decision. I wasn’t really expecting to come here this weekend but I’m glad I did. I’m having a ball,” Denton said.
Rowe rounded out the final overall results in third place, an impressive performance after a recent bout of pneumonia hampered the West Australian’s season preparations.
“Not bad, we won the first race which was pretty awesome,” Rowe said.
“I can’t thank AGI Sport enough. Tim my mechanic, Mark, and all the boys for the great race in the first race, it was pretty intense.
Round Two of the CAMS Jayco Australian Formula 4 Championship will commence from 9:10am Sunday morning with a total of three races, with Zagame Autosport’s Ryan Suhle to start from pole position for Race One.
Click here to read results for: Race One/Round One; Race Two/Round One.
Race Three Results
1. Liam Lawson – Team BRM
2. Cameron Shields – Team BRM +2.4647
3. Ryan Suhle – Zagame Autosport +3.6321
4. Josh Denton – Team BRM +4.0166
5. Nick Rowe – AGI Sport +4.1841
6. Simon Fallon – Team BRM +6.4087
7. Jordan Mazzaroli – JRD +11.7322
8. Aaron Love – Team BRM +12.0765
9. Harley Haber – AGI Sport +13.5168
10. Tyler Everingham – Zagame Autosport +16.5738
11. Zak Best – AGI Sport +21.2978
12. Sage Murdoch – AGI Sport +40.4098
13. Zane Morse – Team BRM +1.7 Laps
Round One Points
1. Liam Lawson – Team BRM: 61
2. Josh Denton – Team BRM: 49
3. Nick Rowe – AGI Sport: 47
4. Ryan Suhle – Zagame Autosport: 45 (R) (RS)
5. Jordan Mazzaroli – JRD: 22 (R)
6. Tyler Everingham – Zagame Autosport: 19 (R)
7. Cameron Shields – Team BRM: 18 (RS)
8. Simon Fallon – Team BRM: 16 (RS)
9. Aaron Love – Team BRM: 14 (R)
10. Harley Haber – AGI Sport: 6
11. Zak Best – AGI Sport: 4
12. Sage Murdoch – AGI Sport: 1
13. Zane Morse – Team BRM: 1