Ethian Symonds denied victory at PFI

March 3, 2020


It became a weekend of ‘what could have been’ for the #YRDArmy at PFI with penalties denying our army of six drivers a win and podium finish. With Vinnie Phillips and Rowan Campbell-Pilling hitting even bigger problems, both Freddie Allum and Jesse Phillips were left to fly the flag with the pair putting on encouraging displays in the continuation of their progress in the sport.

In this article we will break down the story of each driver one by one starting with Ethian Symonds

Ethian Symonds – 4th

A traitorous Mini X30 qualifying saw the field split in big numbers with Ethian over three seconds off pole position! However, with many struggling this still left Ethian in 10th place. As normal service resumed on Sunday, Ethian immediately began his fight back taking a 5th and 6th place finish in the heats. This would be good enough to put the Coles driver on the outside of row two for the final.

A damage limitation start would see Ethian finish lap one in 5th and from there, just like he had been doing all weekend, he started to work his way up the order. By lap seven Ethian had got up to 2nd place and now had a 1.2 second gap to Leo Robinson in the lead. On a charge, it took Ethian just three laps to catch the leader and with a gap behind he was able to challenge for the win with no pressure from behind.

Clinical in his attack, Ethian wasted no time in hitting the front and immediately pulled away eventually going on to win the final! However, celebrations would be short lived with a front fairing penalty dropping Ethian to 4th place. An unfortunate end, but nevertheless a brilliant performance!

Luke Watts – 13th

Luke was the other YRDA driver to get on the podium before a front fairing penalty after the final. In a field of over 60 Junior X30 drivers, Luke qualified an impressive 2nd in the wet conditions. In the dry, Luke showed the same pace taking a win and 3rd in the heats which would keep Luke on the front row for the final. A fierce battle for the lead, which involved over ten drivers at one stage, saw Luke lead in the early phases. However, after being pushed back as far as 6th a late comeback saw the KMS driver finish 3rd on track. Unfortunately, a front fairing penalty would see Luke classified in 13th place.

Freddie Allum – 13th

Freddie continued his progress on his return to the TVKC Winter Series last weekend with a promising 13th place in the Mini X30 final. With an increased grid of 27 drivers, compared the 19 from round one, Freddie did a great job to repeat his result from the series opener. It wasn’t the smoothest of runs there with Freddie having a tough set of heats all of which put him 21st on the grid for the final. However, he dug deep and charged through the order making places in six of the last seven laps to gain eight places overall on his way to 13th!

Jesse Phillips – 20th (Novice Trophy)

YRDA graduate, Jesse Phillips, put on a fantastic performance over the weekend to not only win the novice trophy, but finish 20th out of 44 drivers! Racing in the IAME Cadet class, Jesse had to start at the back of the grid for his heats with the ORM driver yet to get off his novice plates. But Jesse showed what he is capable of already, gaining a combined total of 18 places across his two heats to qualify straight through to the A Final in 26th place. From there Jesse worked his way up to 20th in the final comfortably winning the novice trophy being the only one to qualify for the A Final.

It is a hugely encouraging performance with Jesse in just his first six races already taking on drivers with over a year of experience on him. He may be in his first year of racing, but Jesse is catching the eye of many in the sport, including team boss and Formula E driver, Oliver Rowland.

Other results:

Vinnie Phillips – DNS

Rowan Campbell-Pilling – DNS