Astuti escapes serious injury after violent rollover
Monday 24th May, 2021 - 3:00pm
Valentino Astuti has escaped serious injury after a wild rollover which cut short Round 2 of the Australian Formula Ford Championship at Wakefield Park.
Astuti was battling Jake Donaldson for fourth midway through the third and final race of the weekend when he rode up on the back of Car #35 on the way to the Fish Hook.
The impact saw his #2 Sonic Motor Racing Services entry leap into the air before tripping on the infield and rolling three times.
It came to rest on its side and Astuti was able to crawl out of the car under his own power, as the race was red flagged.
While appearing sore as he walked away from the crash site, Sonic has confirmed that the teen suffered no serious injuries.
It was a sour note on an otherwise solid weekend for Astuti, fresh out of karting this year, having finished third in Race 1 and fourth in Race 2.
“The first race was good,” he said.
“I had a decent start and had some decent momentum to keep with the leaders and had a good battle with Noah [Sands], and finished that battle in the last corner and got third.
“The second race was close. We fought hard, but in Race 3 into the Fish Hook, I was going to dive up in the inside and I’ve just gone over the top of him. He braked a little earlier than I anticipated, which is when I mounted the side of him.
“It was pretty scary – watching the ground, sky, ground flash before my eyes. My right shoulder is in a little bit of pain, but I’ll be alright.
“I feel like I’ve learnt a lot this weekend, how to control the car and just picked up a lot of pace. I’m looking forward to keeping that pace going at Winton.”
The incident may, however, see Donaldson sidelined from that Winton round.
“After looking like I could finish top four in the final race of the weekend [the crash] happened,” he wrote on social media.
“The other driver took responsibility for the crash as he locked up and ran over the top of me.
“Unfortunately, this incident means we probably will have to miss the next round of the Formula Ford Australia national Series.
“Glad he is ok but we need a change of luck!
“We are definitely showing that even as a small budget team we can challenge the big teams.
“Hopefully somehow we can come up with the funds to get there.”
Tom Sargent pipped Cody Burcher to the round win after they mirrored each other’s race results of a victory and second placing, with the extra point for topping qualifying proving decisive for the former.
Sargent therefore leads the championship by 14 points on the way to Round 3 at Winton, on June 11-13.