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PRESS RELEASE/Lachlan Mineeff – photo; supplied
Lachlan Mineeff has launched himself into contention for the 2019 Australian Formula Ford Championship with his second consecutive round win in the series, emerging as the overall victor after a chaotic weekend of racing at Sandown.
After qualifying fourth, the 16-year-old dodged several incidents in Race 1 to take the win.
“Race 1 was one of those races where there seemed to be cars spearing off and crashing into each other left, right and centre, so I focused on avoiding the drama and it paid off,” Mineeff said.
Starting from pole position in Race 2, Mineeff swapped the lead several times, and was again forced to avoid a collision between a couple of other drivers late in the race. He was classified third in the official results.
“Race 2 was an interesting one, because there were some quite fast cars coming through from the back of the field, and they were taking lots of risks to overtake,” Mineeff said.
“I stayed in the lead pack and was again able to capitalise on an incident to score another top-three result.”
Mineeff was again in contention for victory in Race 3, but an awkward moment with a slower car cost him momentum, and saw him relegated to fourth at the finish.
“Race 3 was longer, which meant we were lapping the slower cars at the end of the race,” Mineeff said.
“I caught up to one of them at a difficult spot on the track, which allowed the leader to pull away and the cars behind to catch up to me.
“I knew a solid top-five finish was still going to be good enough for me to win the round overall, so I didn’t panic at that point.”
While elated with the result, Mineeff said his immediate thoughts at the end of the weekend were with his team-mate Tom Sargent, who was forced to withdraw from the race meeting due to concussion sustained in a serious qualifying crash.
“It was a sensational weekend for me, but I’m really disappointed for Tom,” Mineeff said.
“I never want to see anyone have a nasty incident like that, and especially not my friend and team-mate. Thankfully, he had excellent medical care at the track and hospital, and he’ll be fine.
“The CHE Racing Team did an amazing job – as well as giving me a sensational car all weekend, they even managed to rebuild Tom’s one, but unfortunately he wasn’t given medical clearance to race.”
Mineeff’s second round victory has elevated him to third in the Formula Ford standings, 32 points behind the leader with 122 points still on offer across the final two rounds of the season.
The penultimate round of the Australian Formula Ford Championship will be held on Mineeff’s home turf, Goulburn’s Wakefield Park circuit, 6-8 September.
Top 10 Points – After Round 5
1. Angelo Mouzouris – 203
2. Zac Soutar – 179
3. Lachlan Mineeff – 171
4. Callum Hedge – 165
5. Tom Sargent – 164
6. Jay Hanson – 149
7. Cody Burcher – 134
8. Courtney Prince – 123
9. Liam McLellan – 86
10. Cody Donald – 84
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