“Meanwhile, at the Weekend: Farfus wins DTM opener; Cammish makes it nine Formula Ford GB wins at Thruxton”
DTM (Rd 1; Hockenheim)
Augusto Farfus took the opening DTM race of the season at the Hockenheimring ahead Dirk Werner and Christian Vietoris. Starting 2nd, the RBM BMW racer DRS-passed polesitter Timo Schneider on the sixth tour, making his first stop a lap later when the safety car intervened.
The sudden change of strategy left Farfus lingering in a group outside the top six, while tyre strategies evolved and hands were played, before moving passed Daniel Juncadella to claim what would eventually become the lead and the victory.
Werner came home just 3.69s shy of Farfus, despite qualifying 20th. A long middle stint on options from the Schnitzer BMW pilot brought the 31-year-old into play, emerging ahead rookies Pascal Wehrlein and Juncadella to assume the runner-up spot.
Vietoris was the victim of a poor start on prime tyres dropping from 3rd to 11th on the opening lap; however the HWA Mercedes racer climbed up the order with, like Werner, a long middle stint and some decisive moves.
Gary Paffett assumed 4th after Vietoris passed him late on; however Paffett continued to drop back in the final tours, eventually finishing just ahead of Bruno Spengler (5th), Schneider (6th; whose race was hampered by the safety car), Joey Hand (7th) and Mike Rockenfeller (8th). Marco Wittmann and Roberto Mehri rounded out the top ten.
Wehrlein and Juncadella did not pit under the safety car, giving the pair an opportunity to lead the race until they finally stopped on lap 27. Timo Glock enjoyed a brief, but respectable début and was running well until his wheel fell off following a pitstop on lap 17.
British Formula Ford (Rd 3, Thruxton)
Dan Cammish increased his winning streak in the British Formula ford Series to nine at the weekend with three more dominant displays at Thruxton. The runaway points leader headed Andrew Richardson across the line in the opening event, before beating Juan Rosso in the second and third races of the weekend; however Cammish did not have it easy.
Cammish had to fight hard to keep Richardson at bay at the beginning of race one, with Richardson making a stellar start; however the poleman recovered enough to maintain the lead over his fellow Briton. There was a reprieve for Cammish when Richardson was passed by Lassi Halminen on the fourth tour, only for Halminen to drop out soon afterward with mechanical issues. Harrison Scott took 3rd, just shy of Richardson, but not before the feisty Scott edged out Rosso in a tight mid-race battle. Luke Williams survived an opening lap collision with Camren Kaminsky, dropping to 12th; however Jamun racer sliced through the order to take 5th ahead of Fred Martin-Dye and Nico Maranzana.
It was easier for Cammish in race two, as he pulled out an 8.6s lead in the opening tours, before calming his pace in the final tours to win by 5.1s from Rosso. The real battle was for 2nd as Scott battled with Williams, before the latter dropped back in the later laps, but where one opponent had dropped back, Scott gained another in Rosso, but it was the Argentine racer who took the battle for 2nd, demoting Scott to 3rd. Kaminsky recorded a 4th place finish, despite falling to 9th in the opening tours, but he rose back to 4th, following a ding-dong battle with Maranzana (5th), George Blundell (6th) and Williams (7th).
Cammish completed his weekend rout on Sunday morning to extend his series lead to 87 points over new-2nd-placed man Scott. The championship leader also set a new lap record for Formula Ford’s at Thruxton on his way to a 10.04s victory over Rosso, in a race where he truly stretched his legs over the competition; however the 24-year-old eased off briefly mid-race following a near off at the chicane – beyond that, Cammish was untouchable. Rosso claimed 2nd early on, only for Richardson to sweep by on lap five; however the Argentine racer persisted and Rosso retook the runner-up spot on the final tour. Scott and Sam Brabham had relatively quiet runs to 4th and 5th respectively, with Martin-Dye taking a distant 6th.