BF Racing Mygale driver Cameron Shields has taken his second consecutive Australian Formula Ford Series round victory this weekend, winning all three races in Round 5 of the series at Sydney Motorsport Park to keep his title chances alive.
The 16-year-old Toowoomba driver was second-fastest in qualifying, but was relegated to fifth position on the grid after his fastest time was disallowed for exceeding the track limits.
Not to be deterred, Shields powered his way to the front of the field in Race 1 after a close battle with Sonic Motor Racing team-mates Hunter McElrea and Max Vidau. After initially losing the lead to Vidau at the start of Race 2, Shields recaptured first place on the opening lap and stayed at the front all the way to the chequered flag. He also led every lap of Race 3, which finished behind the Safety Car due to an incident involving Jake Donaldson.
Shields has now won five of the last six national Formula Ford races and has moved up to second in the standings, 45 points behind leader Vidau, ensuring the title contest will come down to the final round.
“We changed to a different car in the last round at Queensland, and it has been a massive improvement,” Shields said.
“Our pace was strong all weekend, Brett Francis and the team did a great job of producing a race-winning package and even after the qualifying drama, I knew I had the speed to fight back to the front of the field.”
Hunter McElrea banked a healthy points haul with a trio of second-place finishes while Vidau scored his fifth overall podium result of the season, despite a spin in Race 2.
“I just got on the power a bit too early coming out of the last corner, but I re-focused and was able to recover,” Vidau said.
“We’re in a really strong points position heading to Phillip Island so I’ll be aiming for a mistake-free weekend to wrap up the title.”
Jayden Ojeda finished fourth overall in his Borland Racing Developments Spectrum to keep himself in mathematical contention for the title.
After coming into the weekend trailing Tim Hamilton in the Formula Ford 1600 (Kent Class) standings, Mitch Maddren finished ahead of Hamilton in all three races to take the crown.
“This season has been hard work, especially after our blown engine in the last round at Queensland Raceway, but we never gave up and to win the series is a great reward for the efforts of Dad and the team,” said Maddren, who is planning a move to the Duratec Class in 2018.
Maddren spent all three races battling with NSW State competitor Keith Brennan, who ultimately took a clean-sweep of Kent Class wins in his Anglo Motorsport entry.
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Australian Formula Ford Series – Top 10 Points (after Round 5 of 6)
1. Max Vidau – 216
2. Cameron Shields – 171
3. Hunter McElrea – 168
4. Jayden Ojeda – 160
5. Cooper Murray – 118
6. Liam McLellan – 107
7. Nathan Herne – 104.5
8. Harrison Jones – 95
9. Zac Soutar – 64.5
10. Jordan Boys – 55.5
Australian Formula Ford 1600 Series – Top 5 points (final)
1. Mitch Maddren – 139
2. Tim Hamilton – 126
3. Kane Coleman – 76
4. Karla Curtis – 44
=5. James Corbett – 24
=5. Jimmy Bailey – 24