Exciting races on cards

September 14th, 2012 - 7:03 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, Sep 14 (IANS) With a maximum of 75 points up for grabs, the three LGB Formula 4 races scheduled for the weekend are likely to generate a lot of heat and excitement as the fourth round of the 15th JK Tyre FMSCI National Racing Championship gets underway here Saturday.

The competition in the other two classes, the Super Saloon and Indian Junior Touring Car, will be no less fierce with multiple contenders in the running for the titles, though should it rain as has been the case in the past few days, then the individual scripts can go awry.

In the Formula 4, Sudarshana Rao of Rayo Racing enjoys a healthy 20-point lead, but that could disappear in the blink of an eye with three races (as against two in other categories) scheduled as the championship is to be decided over five rounds and 12 races.

Rao for certain will have the likes of team-mate Varun Nathwani who is second in the championship with 46 points and the seasoned Ashwin Sundar (Dark Don Racing) currently third with 43, breathing down his neck.

The four races in the previous two rounds witnessed more than their share of acrimony, shunts and red flags, not to mention the visits to the Stewards who were kept busy with inquiries that spiced up the proceedings.

While the Bangalore-based Rao kept his wits about to deliver a win and two podium, Sundar, among the hot favourites to win the title, has struggled with inconsistency though in the previous round, he put his campaign back on track with a win and a second place finish after failing to secure a single point in the first round at Coimbatore.

In contrast, Nathwani performed consistently with three top-four finishes in four outings, but never quite able to convert them into a win.

The situation is comparable in the Super Saloon class where Coimbatore’s Vijaykumar Rajvirdhan (Prime Racing) with two victories and a second place leads with 93 points, but has former Rally champion Arjun Balu (Tiger Sport) hot on his heels with 68 points.

Rajvirdhan, for all his aggressive driving, earned some valuable points by default, like in the previous round when he was elevated from second to first after winner Balu was docked a 20- second penalty for false start.

In fact, Balu has looked the most impressive as he has a lot of ground to make up after missing the first round due to a bout of jaundice. He, like Rajvirdhan, has two wins to his credit, but needs to keep a sharp eye on some serious competition behind him where several drivers are bunched up.

The situation in the IJTC class is somewhat different with Mumbai’s Fahad Kutty (Team Game Over) dominating with five wins in six starts for 125 points after his car survived a close post-race examination in the scrutiny bay in the previous round.

Ranged behind Kutty are local challenger Feroze Khan (86), son of former National champion Ayub Khan and Trichur’s Diljith Shaji of Eram Group (82), both well clear of other contenders.

In the Volkswagen Polo R Cup one-make series that will be run concurrently, veteran Ameya Walavalkar is sitting pretty at the top with 184 points, ahead of Mihir Dharkar (169) and A. Sandeep Kumar (161).

The Polo Cup races have thrown up some close finishes, like in the previous round, and with the top drivers within striking distance of each other, it would be no different this time.

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