McMullan sets the pace in Festival Final
Brands Hatch, Kent, UK – Monday 26th October 2015: Dunlop Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year Jonny McMullan approached the final day of the Brands Hatch Formula Ford Festival 40th Anniversary meeting in good shape and feeling confident he could challenge for the coveted title.
Starting semi-final two from the outside of the front row, McMullan initially made a good getaway before falling back at the end of the opening lap. With signs starting to show that Jonny was struggling for grip in the mixed conditions, the Antrim driver was forced off the dry line sending him further down the order. The ever-determined McMullan however didn’t give in and charged back to try and make his way into the last of the automatic qualification places for the Final. Aided by a mid-race safety car, McMullan was now locked in battle with Ivor McCullough for eighth which he just missed out on at the line.
Lining up in second for the final qualification race, Jonny made a superb start to move into the lead early on. Maintaining a good lead throughout, McMullan remained in front to win and with it, secure his place for the Formula Ford Festival final.
Starting from 25th on the grid, McMullan’s bid to lift the 2015 title was going to be a challenging one. However the festival can regularly spring a surprise and Jonny prepared himself to make the most of any opportunity that would come his way. The opening laps were action packed to say the least. Making his way up to twelfth, the safety car was deployed just before the red flag was shown, stopping the race to address a large trail of what appeared to be oil on the circuit. When the race was restarted, McMullan was handed a fresh opportunity to move further up the order. Setting the fastest lap of the race, Jonny finally took the chequered flag in tenth position.
Jonny McMullan – Dunlop Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year:
“It’s been a frustrating day at the Formula Ford Festival. We started on the front row for the Semi-Final, but unfortunately a mistake cost us this weekend in the damp conditions, dropping us out of contention for the top spot. We won the final qualification race, which got us through to the main final. Starting from 25th, we showed the great pace we had all week after the red flag, I came through to finish tenth with the fastest lap of the race. I’m disappointed for my sponsors and team not to have given them a better result, but I am now very firmly focused on next weekend’s Walter Hayes Trophy to finish off what has been a fantastic year racing as the Dunlop Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year, with The Irish Sports Council and Naylor Engineering.
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