April 17, 2019
In IAME Cadet Vinnie Phillips proved he is a championship contender with a hugely consistent weekend. It started with good progress on Saturday throughout the heats which ended with a win in heat two and despite dropping to ninth at the start of the final Vinnie worked his way through the field smartly to put himself in the fight for the lead going into the final two laps. After a nail-biting end to the race Vinnie just missed out on victory by 0.06 seconds in what was a fantastic drive!
Sunday threw up a similar result with Vinnie finishing fifth and second to qualify fifth on the grid for the final. Although a tricky start left Vinnie over two seconds back from the top three, he would eventually close them down fighting back from sixth place to latch onto the top three with two laps to go. On this occasion Vinnie was forced to settle for fourth, but it was another good result leaving him second in the championship just four points back from the lead.
In a tough Mini X30 field Luke was never far from the front of the field at the season opener at PFI. After qualifying in third he followed that up with another along with a fourth place to put himself on the inside of row two for the final. Despite a tough first half of the race, which saw him drop back to fifth, he would go on to finish second after a strong last lap making it two YRDA drivers on the podium in one day.
Day two was a lot more eventful for Luke. Heat one saw him taken out not only once but twice with Luke eventually limping home in fourteenth place. Third in heat two was a great recovery, but it still left Luke eighth on the grid for the final. In that race Luke fought his way through to the lead twice eventually going onto win the race. However, he was later penalised for a nose cone penalty dropping him to tenth place.
Ivan’s weekend was full of ups and downs in which he was never quite able to get into his stride. In a field of over forty drivers Ivan qualified 34th and got racing off to a fantastic start gaining fourteen places to finish third in heat one. A penalty in heat two saw a complete turn of fortunes which left him stuck in the mid field battle in the final and a further penalty on top of that saw him eventually finish in 21st.
Sunday got off to a much better start with Ivan qualifying in ninth place just 0.25 seconds off pole position. Progress should have continued in heat one with Ivan crossing the line in fifth, but a hefty ten second penalty dropped him back to fifteenth. Ivan bounced back in heat two claiming that fifth place to start seventeenth in the final. Sunday’s final was similar to Saturday’s, very hectic and lots of battles but out of it came a much better result with Ivan finishing in thirteenth place.
There was little to nothing for Luke to take away from his weekend which was a real shame given his pre-season pace. Sixth in heat one was a strong start, but an incident saw him not even finish heat two leaving him 26th on the grid for the final. With quick progress needed what Luke didn’t need was to be pushed off at the start dropping him to dead last. From there he did recover to seventeenth, but was carrying a front fairing penalty leaving him 22nd overall.
Sunday followed a fairly similar pattern to that of Saturday. A strong qualifying with eighth followed by an equally strong first heat with sixth, but then things were turned on it’s head after he was pushed off in his second heat leaving him out of the race. That left him on row thirteen for the final and Luke was once again the innocent victim in an incident on lap two putting him out of the race.