Matt Podjursky claimed a dramatic opening race at Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon for the fifth round of the Hi-Q Components NZ Formula First Championship. Chris Symon finished a mere 0.030s behind Podjursky with Reece Hendl-Cox third.
A slow get away from Symon off pole saw him immediately on the back foot as Podjursky took the lead ahead of Arran Crighton. Callum Crawley’s impressive second-row start was put to waste when he got boxed in behind Symon after the later’s slow getaway.
In a stark contrast to Symon, Liam Foster and Billy Fraser both started their races early and subsequently received ten-second jump start penalties.
At the half way point, the front six cars of Podjursky, Symon, Crighton, Bramwell King, Hendl-Cox, and Crawley split in two with the top three pulling a gap on the remaining three. At the commencement of lap seven, it appeared as though the two groups would merge again to make it a six car fight for the win on the final lap.
While Podjursky and Symon claimed the top two spots, King stole a final corner podium from Crighton to redeem some crucial points on the series leader.
The drama kicked off 50 metres from the chequered flag when Dylan Smith and Liam Foster made contact, resulting in Smith’s car getting airborne briefly. Smith was later awarded a post-race exclusion for the incident while another incident between the two after the chequered flag saw Foster excluded as well.
Official Results – TBC