Michael Eastwell eased to the third Formula Ford Festival heat victory at Brands Hatch – but Luke Cooper was the big-name who struggled with a non-finish.
Poleman Eastwell made a clean start off the line in the Spectrum to lead, before offs at Paddock Hill Bend for Ashley McCulla and Henry Chart brought out the safety car.
That proved controversial as much of the pack were surprised to find the safety car moving slowly ahead, causing the pack to stamp on the brakes at Clearways.
Contact behind ensued, with Pascal Monbaron the biggest loser, forced to retire at the start of the front straight.
Eastwell managed the lap seven restart well and had rocketed ahead by nearly 1s from Oliver White’s Medina Sport by the start line.
While Eastwell was out front, it was a four car battle behind for the remaining podium places. White, Matt Round-Garrido (Medina), the Firman of Joey Foster and Team USA Scholarship member Colin Mullan’s Ray were all separated by a hair’s breadth.
In the closing stages, Foster managed a cheeky look up the inside of Graham Hill to pass Round-Garrido for third.
White resisted the pressure from Foster to the end to finish second, with Eastwell winning by 2.968s.
Luke Cooper was the big name struggler. Having already been plagued by engine issues in qualifying, the Castle Combe champion had to pull off into the pits again on lap eight with more problems.
|2||P89||Oliver White||Van Diemen||+2.968|
|4||P89||Matt Round-Garrido||Van Diemen||+3.333|
|7||P89||David McCullough||Van Diemen||+8.473|
|8||P90||Alan Davidson||Mondiale M89S||+10.364|
|10||P89||Vincent Radermecker||Van Diemen||+16.032|
|11||P89||John Svensson||Van Diemen||+21.662|
|12||P90||Ryan Campbell||Reynard 89FF||+21.809|
|14||P90||Henry Campbell||Reynard 89FF||+32.669|
|15||P90||David Nicholl||Reynard 89FF||+33.168|