Team Dolan’s Niall Murray took a commanding win in the first heat of the Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, defeating polesitter Josh Smith.
National FF1600 champion Murray did not bide his time to make his critical race-winning pass – by sliding down the inside of Oldfield Motorsport’s Smith at Druids on the second lap.
From there, Murray was unchallenged at the front, winning by some seven seconds at the end of the 15-lap race.
Smith dropped back to third. He tried to keep with Murray for much of the race, before a front upright failed, blunting his pace.
From there he had to resist Keith Donegan, who made his way past on lap 10. Donegan then pulled out a small gap to finish second.
Don Hardman Racing’s Carter Williams had a somewhat eventful race – despite starting and finishing fourth.
Williams spent much of the race battling with Team Canada Scholarship winner Guillaume Archambault, while in turn closing up to Smith at the end of the race, narrowly missing out on a podium spot.
Also in the frantic battle over fourth was sixth-placed Jonathan Browne.
The race was relatively clean – save for Flashman Finneran and backmarker Terry Walkinshaw making contact while the former attempted to lap the latter. Finneran was excluded for his part in the incident, which may hand a lifeline to Noel Robinson, who pulled off into the pits early in the race with engine issues but may now get a berth at the back of a semi.
|1||P89||Niall Murray||Van Diemen||12.46.327|
|2||P89||Keith Donegan||Van Diemen||+7.329|
|3||P89||Josh Smith||Van Diemen||+9.120|
|7||P89||Geoffroy Horion||Van Diemen||+18.512|