Crowne Plaza Dundalk National Formula Vee Championship; Round 4 – Race Report
Following on from his recent double victory, reigning champion Adam Macaulay had a perfect weekend by taking pole, fastest lap and the race win at Round 4 of the Crowne Plaza Dundalk National Formula Vee Championship at Mondello Park. The Newsome Racing driver crossed the line almost 9 seconds ahead of AvantiSport Racing’s Kevin Grogan who could only manage to stick with Macaulay’s pace for the opening two laps.
Behind the leading pair, there was a very tough battle between Jimmy Furlong, Dan Polley, Stephen Morrin, Sean Newsome, Colm Blackburn and Dave O’Brien who started a lowly 15th on the grid after issues in qualifying. This group was quickly reduced in number after an ambitious move by Blackburn resulted in both his and Newsome’s retirement. For several laps, the remaining four swapped places at each corner before Morrin dropped off the back of the group and Furlong had a spin following contact with O’Brien. O’Brien got the better of Polley to take the last step on the podium with Morrin recovering some pace to finish in fifth.
Last season’s rookie champion, Justin Costello, suffered with engine issues in testing but put these behind him to have his best finish in the class with a strong charge to seventh at the chequered flag. He was followed very closely by rookies Anthony Cross and Shane McBride.
Following the race, Macaulay was presented with the Birrane Cup by Mondello Park’s John Morris.
The earlier qualifying race, held under very greasy conditions, saw almost every driver leave the track at some stage. In the early stages, it was all about the rookies with Newsome Racing’s Sean Newsome leading the field from Anthony Cross, Shane McBride and Mark Elliott. Stephen Morrin took the lead on lap three after a Newsome mistake and was chased all the way to the flag by Ger Byrne who was recovering from an earlier 360 degree spin at Paddock corner. Showing his mastery of tricky conditions, Abbeylawn Racing’s Byrne took the lead at the last corner of the last lap from Morrin who was followed home by Sean Newsome in third.
After four rounds, Kevin Grogan remains top of the Crowne Plaza Dundalk National Formula Vee Championship from Adam Macaulay with Dave O’Brien in third. Stephen Morrin has a comfortable lead in the B Championship ahead of Morgan McCourt and Ger Byrne. The Finol Star of Tomorrow Championship is currently being led by Anthony Cross from Shane McBride and Sean Newsome.
Round 5 of the Crowne Plaza Dundalk National Formula Vee Championship takes place at the Kirkistown Circuit on 21 June.
VW Spares Highest Grid Mover – Dave O Brien
Mondello Park Fastest Lap – Adam Macaulay
Finol Star of Tomorrow Fastest Lap – Anthony Cross
Star Drive: Dave O’Brien. After qualifying in an uncharacteristic 15th place, O’Brien made his way quickly through the field and into the top 6. After a multi lap battle with his team mate Jimmy Furlong and Dan Polley, O’Brien came out on top to take the bottom step of the podium.