Formula Ford: Up and down weekend for Sonic at Sandown
– Angelo Mouzouris retains championship lead after massive Race 1 incident
– Jay Hanson scores personal best Formula Ford result
– Another personal best result for Courtney Prince
– Callum Hedge fights back at Sandown
– State series racer Kyle Gurton mixes with national regulars
Sonic Motor Racing Services endured a weekend of highs and lows at Round 5 of the Australian Formula Ford Championship at Sandown Raceway.
Starting third in Race 1, Angelo Mouzouris was fighting for the lead when he clouted the back of Zac Soutar after he suffered a mechanical failure and slowed suddenly on the main straight. Mouzouris was hospitalised with a dislocated femur in his right leg, but recovered and was cleared to race on Sunday.
Following a mammoth repair job to the Pitbox.io Mygale overnight, Mouzouris fought back to seventh in Race 2 and third in Race 3 to retain the championship lead.
In his first race at Sandown, 15 year old New Zealander Callum Hedge was fighting for second on the final lap of Race 1 before he clashed with Cody Burcher at Turn 9 and failed to take the chequered flag. Hedge was penalised five championship points for his involvement in the incident, with a further five suspended.
Hedge recovered strongly to sixth in Race 2, before a mechanical failure while fighting in the top five in Race 3 saw him back off and nurse the car home to collect some important championship points.
Hedge was later penalised a further six points (including five suspended from the previous penalty) for crossing the pit entry line during the race, which hampered a weekend of strong speed from the fast Kiwi.
Following a penalty for an incident while fighting for second place in Race 2, Formula Ford rookie Jay Hanson stormed from 16th to second in the final race of the weekend to score his personal best national race result after a consistently progressive performance in what was also his first race meeting at Sandown.
Courtney Prince also scored her personal best national race result in second in Race 1, finishing fourth on the road behind two state series competitors.
The fast female showed great potential by recovering from a DNF after being turned around in Race 2 to charge from 17th to eighth in Race 3.
Sonic Victorian State Series racer Kyle Gurton enjoyed another strong weekend, placing fourth in the state series results and competing well with the regular national competitors.
Sonic Motor Racing Services still lead the 2019 Australian Formula Ford Championship with two rounds remaining, as Mouzouris leads on 203 points, Hedge in fourth on 165, the lead on 131 points and Hedge on 122, while Hanson and Prince sit in sixth and eighth respectively.
The sixth and penultimate round of the Australian Formula Ford Championship heads to Wakefield Park Raceway in New South Wales on September 6-8.
QUOTES & RESULTS
#2, Sonic Motor Racing/Pitbox
QUALIFYING – 3rd
RACE 1 – DNF
RACE 2 – 7th
RACE 3 – 3rd
“I’m disappointed overall by our result of the weekend given some things that happened that were out of our control in Race 1, and it was just a recovery process from there,” said Angelo Mouzouris.
“We recovered well and scored a solid points haul to retain the championship lead.
“All the track and medical staff did an amazing job, luckily my leg wasn’t broken which was initially suspected when it turned out only to be a dislocation of the femur in my right leg.
“I was cleared to race again today and it was great to repay the team for their efforts to repair the car overnight and bring home a good result for them.”
#5, Sonic Motor Racing/Contract Flooring
QUALIFYING – 5th
RACE 1 – DNF
RACE 2 – 6th
RACE 3 – 15th
“I put together a pretty good lap in Qualifying but achieved it on my own, and the tow around Sandown was worth around half a second and so I started race one from fifth,” said Callum Hedge.
“I was fighting for second late in the race before the incident with Cody Burcher on the final lap where I received a penalty of five championship points.
“Starting from the back in Race 2, I managed to work my way forward and stay out of trouble to get up to sixth.
“I got a decent start in Race 3 and moved up to fourth early before a mechanical issue saw me drop back down the order. I circulated and nursed the car home in last to collect some potentially valuable championship points come the end of the year.
#4, Sonic Motor Racing/AWC Motorsport Academy
QUALIFYING – 9th
RACE 1 – 8th
RACE 2 – 16th
RACE 3 – 2nd
“After qualifying ninth it was always going to be a bit of a mission to get to the front of the field, but the quality of racing was great out there,” said Jay Hanson.
“I got up to fourth in Race 1 before I made an error and spun on my own trying to avoid a lapped car which put paid to a good result there.
“In Race 2 I got as high as third before a coming together with another competitor, that meant I was handed a 30 second penalty and sent back to 16th.
“We had a great Race 3 and drove back through the field to second which is my best result so far this year and a great reward for the team.
“While we didn’t get the overall points haul we wanted, we showed some great potential and we’ll carry that forward to the last two rounds of the year.”
#3, Sonic Motor Racing/Dragway Performance
QUALIFYING – 12th
RACE 1 – 4th
RACE 2 – DNF
RACE 3 – 8th
“I didn’t get a tow on my best lap in Qualifying so I didn’t maximise that session,” said Courtney Prince.
“We had great speed in the first race and I moved up to fourth on the road and second in the national series which was my personal best national result.
“Sadly in Race 2 I was taken out and hit the wall which meant I didn’t finish that race, but the team at Sonic worked so hard and got me back out for Race 3.
“I drove back through the field from 17th to eighth to finish off nicely after what was an up and down weekend for the team.”