Matt Round-Garrido took his second win of the BRSCC Avon Tyres National Formula Ford 1600 Championship season in the third Kirkistown race, securing Team Dolan a weekend sweep of victories.
Round-Garrido started second on the grid in his Medina Sport car, but a weak start coupled with a superlative one for Cliff Dempsey Racing’s Neil Maclennan meant he was down to third after the first lap, behind Maclennan and reversed grid poleman Rory Smith.
It took two laps for him to overtake both, with Maclennan falling from the lead to sixth in the space of one lap.
B-M Racing’s Smith also started sinking down the order a lap later in his Medina, promoting Don Hardman Racing driver Joey Foster and Kevin Mills Racing’s Michael Eastwell to second and third.
Foster lost second to Eastwell, just before a safety car was called out due to a collision between Eastwell’s KMR team-mate Hugo Bentley-Ellis and Swift Cooper’s Luke Cooper. Bentley-Ellis was disqualified for the incident, meaning he didn’t collect the two points for fastest lap.
Round-Garrido came under pressure from Eastwell after the restart, but held him off long enough for another safety car to interrupt proceedings.
Foster spun his Ray at the hairpin and collected Niall Murray which sent the championship leader out of the race along with CDR team-mates Jonathan Browne and Jamie Thorburn. Foster’s DHR team-mate Carter Williams was also eliminated in the melee.
Murray had won the first two races in his Team Dolan Van Diemen, and Round-Garrido’s victory made the team the first to win all three races in a weekend this season.
KMR took the other two spots on the podium with Eastwell and Jordan Dempsey, both in Spectrums, while Kirkistown expert Alan Davidson took his Clubman Pre-90 class Mondiale to fourth overall for a second time.
Nicky Gibson (Crossle) and Ian McCulla (Reynard) took second and third in class in eighth and 11th overall.
Maclennan recovered to fifth in his Ray, ahead of successful sim racer Sebastian Job, who took his first ever top 10 finish in sixth in his B-M Racing Van Diemen.
Nico Gruber finished seventh, and inherited the points for fastest lap in CDR Ray. Completing the top 10 was Job’s team-mate David McArthur (Van Diemen), and Clubman Post-’89 class winner Vincent Jay.
|1||Pro||Matt Round-Garrido||Medina Sport||13 laps|
|6||Pro||Sebastian Job||Van Diemen||+5.438|
|9||Pro||David McArthur||Van Diemen||+11.236|
|DNF||Pro||Niall Murray||Van Diemen|
|Fastest lap: Gruber, 1:01.598|
|1 Murray 308 2 Eastwell 232 3 Round-Garrido 206 4 Maclennan 195 5 Cooper 194 6 Foster 184 7 Thorburn 180 8 R Smith 145 9 Gruber 117 10 Michael Moyers 95|
|1 Jay 310 2 Richard Morris 226 3 Daniel O’Beirne 106 4 John Svensson 97 5 John Ferguson 94 6 Sam Street 74 7 Henry Chart 53 8 George McDonald 28|