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Mar 31, 2014 - 04:12 PM
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Successful Start for Falcon Motorsport in 2014 Formula Ford
Posted by: newsla on Mar 31, 2014 - 04:06 PM
Support Series News
Successful Start for Falcon Motorsport in 2014 Formula Ford


Falcon Motorsport’s second season contesting the Dunlop MSA British Formula Ford of Great Britain championship got underway at Brands Hatch this weekend. The 2013 Scholarship class champions scored podiums in each of the three races over the two-day event, taking away no less than eight trophies from this year’s opening round.

 

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Reigning Scholarship class champion and returning Falcon driver Harrison Scott got his 2014 campaign off to the best possible start on Saturday morning, claiming two pole positions for races one and three in an impressive qualifying performance. Only a hair could split the qualifying times across the 15-car field, with a quarter of a second spanning the top five and less than eight tenths from P1 to P10.

Hampshire-based Ricky Collard was an impressive sixth fastest overall in his maiden qualifying session in a racing car. The 17-year-old was four-tenths quicker than his closest rival in the Scholarship class for rookie drivers, whilst Manxman Chris Mealin, the third-placed Scholarship qualifier, secured P10 for the start of races one and three.

The lead was snatched from pole-sitter Harrison at the start of race one on Saturday afternoon on the charge into Paddock Hill Bend. He relentlessly chased rival Jayde Kruger (JTR) for 26 laps of the Brands Indy circuit and was rarely more than half a second behind him all the way to the chequered flag.

Collard made an impression on the field on his debut, starting sixth and maintaining position until lap 22 when he was ideally placed to profit from an incident between Sam Brabham (JTR) and Juan Rosso (Radical Motorsport). Collard was not only the ultimate Scholarship class winner, but also came home fourth overall. Mealin completed the Falcon trio’s successful first race by securing seventh in his Formula Ford debut, and by stepping up on to the second-placed Scholarship class podium alongside his team-mate.

The new reverse-grid format for the second of each weekend’s three races saw Collard in P3, Scott in P5 and Mealin in P7. Scott overcame his team-mate to finish second once again and claim the championship lead at the end of the day. Collard was third, his maiden overall podium in only the second race of his career, and was also the Scholarship class winner.

Despite narrowly losing out on the race win, Scott said he was happy with the second placed trophy: “From fifth on the grid to come through to second, on a track where it is really hard to overtake as well – I have to be happy with that. It was the same story again: I got really close to the leader but I just didn’t have that little bit more in hand to pass him.”

Collard said: “I make an improvement every time I go out in the car, and you can see that in the results. I’ve only been in cars for a couple of months and these are great results – all credit to the team. I couldn’t keep Harrison behind me; I was hoping that he would pass Abbott as well and that maybe I could follow through to make it a Falcon 1-2, but it wasn’t to be.”

Mealin maintained a clean and well-paced contest from seventh on the grid to round out the Top 10 and stand on the Scholarship class podium for a second time, on this occasion to collect the third-placed trophy.

Scott led race three confidently from pole position on the warm and sunny Sunday afternoon until an incident between Collard and JTR’s Max Marshall brought out the safety car for three laps. Kruger then made contact with the back of Scott on the final yellow flag lap forcing him to run wide on to the dirty limits of the track. Losing three valuable positions, Scott pushed to the chequered flag in an attempt to make up ground, however he could not improve on his P4 position and slipped to second on the championship leader board as a result.

Collard was on track for points from fifth when contact by Marshall at the Druids hairpin on lap 13 left him stranded and out of the race. Mealin took over the Scholarship class lead and successfully defended position against the battling Meridian Racing pair behind him to bring home his Mygale M12-SJ charger in eighth place.

“I had to give it my all,” said Mealin. "It was eventful out there and the last five minutes seemed to take forever, but I just had to keep calm and carry on. I was losing grip rapidly, but in the end we had another great result and I scored my first Scholarship class win to cap the weekend with a 1-2-3.”

Nick Streatfield, team owner of Oxfordshire-based Falcon Motorsport concludes; “We are very pleased with our pace and the whole team did a superb job. All our drivers were quick; especially in qualifying and Ricky in race one. We are obviously disappointed with the result at the end of incident-filled race three, but overall it’s been a successful weekend and one we can build from.”

2014 Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain current standings:
1 Jayde KRUGER, JTR (RSA) 79 points
2 Harrison SCOTT, Falcon Motorsport (GBR) 77
3 James ABBOTT, Radical Motorsport (GBR) 66
4 Jack BARLOW, Jamun Racing (GBR) 64
5 Max MARSHALL, JTR (GBR) 59

2014 Formula Ford Championship current Scholarship class standings:
1 Ricky COLLARD, Falcon Motorsport (GBR) 59 points
2 Chris MEALIN, Falcon Motorsport (GBR) 58
3 Ashley SUTTON, Meridian (GBR) 48

The next rounds will take place on 19/20 April at Donington Park.


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