On a day of twists and turns, Salem’s Sai Sanjay pocketed the title in the premier MRF Formula 2000 category as the MRF MMSC fmsci Indian National Car Racing Championship 2022 concluded at the Madras International Circuit.
Race1, Making the best use of his pole-position start, Bengaluru’s Sohil Shah roared to a big win, his second of the season. The win notwithstanding Sohil, 21, languishes sixth in the championship having missed five races earlier, while Salem’s Sai Sanjay finished second behind the Bengalurean with Divy Nandan from Gurugram completing the podium.
Race2, Sohil was unstoppable with a difference of 4sec he won the race after he managed to overtake in the last stages of the race and take the leading position by keep Mohamed Ryan from Chennai behind him in second place, as Dillon Thomas Zachariah also from Chennai finished third with further over one second difference. Chirag Ghorpade decided to skip day two as he was suffering from high fever.
The final race of the class once again went Sohil's way, with over five seconds lead he managed to win for the third time in a row and keep the 2022 champion Sai Sanjay behind him in second position, while Chetan Korada from Chennai with further 18second difference completed the podium. While Sai Sanjay gathered enough points this weekend in the three races to seal the championship,
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Nellore’s Viswas Vijayraj from DTS Racing also notched a fluent lights-to-flag win in race 1 with 7sec lead to move within eight points of championship leader Raghul Rangasamy from MSport, Mamallapuram who took the second spot in a photo finish ahead of Kolkata’s Arya Singh from Momentum Motorsports.
Tijil Rao from Bengaluru, Momentum Motorsports won race2, with a total time of 20:10.154, Viswas had to settle for second in a photo finish with the winner. Dhruvh A Goswami from MSport, Bengaluru finished third with over .400th of a second difference.Viswas Vijayraj sealed the title.
The other championship leader Raghul Rangasamy from MSport dropped out of contention after he was disqualified for ignoring a black flag in the final race.
“I don’t know what to say. It is such an emotional moment for me. After missing the championship a few times in the past, it is great to finally win it in my fifth season. I owe everything to my parents who I know are watching the live streaming, and MRF Tyres for their support,” said Viswas.
Equally facile winner was Coimbatore veteran Arjun Balu from Race Concepts who hardly played a false note while orchestrating a massive victory.
In race1 Arjun Balu from Coimbatore, Race Concepts was in a league of his own as he built up a commanding lead halfway into the first of the 10 laps after starting from pole position to make up for a disappointing third round a week back. Behind him, Arjun Narendran from Arka Motorsports, also from Coimbatore, came in second with a difference of 4sec, but remained 14 points adrift of Balu in the championship standings. In third was Rayo Racing’s Sandeep Kumar from Chennai with further difference of 15sec.
Race 2, was once again a direct fight between the two championship contenders, Arjun Balu and Arjun Narendran, it was looking like a replica of previous round, the Safety Car comes in the seventh lap, by then Narendran was quick enough to occupy the leading position just a few meters from the start and extends it to a big lead after starting from P5 on the reverse grid. Starting from P7 Arjun Balu had to come out of the rush, which he did manage by the end of third lap, and was running third behind Sandeep Kumar. With three laps to go, the safety car made way for the race and by then Balu was four seconds behind the leader, but in the end he managed to close the gap to about 400th of a second and finish in second position. With this win Narendran came closer to the championship with just 7 points separating the two. Sandeep finished in third position.
Meanwhile, this class witnessed as many as three disqualifications for technical infringements. Arjun Balu from Race Concepts and Arjun Narendran from Arka Motorsports, both from Coimbatore, were disqualified from prvious day’s Race-1. Narendran suffered the same fate in Race-2, but later won Race-3, as Balu finished second and Sandeep was third.
However, the revised results fetched Arjun Balu the National title ahead of Narendran in the provisional championship standings.
Chennai racers dominated with Gurunath Meiyappan 19:37.194 from Race Concepts finishing ahead of Performance Racing pair of Akkineni Anand Prasad 19:38.495 and Deepak Ravikumar 19:44.652 Consequently, Anand Prasad extended his championship lead to 22 points ahead of team-mate Raja Rajan.
Raja Rajan won the race2, followed by Akkineni in second and Deepak finished third. The final race of the day once again belonged to Raja Rajan followed by Gurunath in second with over one second difference and Akkineni finished third with over two seconds further difference. Akkineni Anand Prasad was the champion in this class.
Another Chennai driver, Ritesh Rai from Performance Racing came through untroubled with 9sec lead with Narendran S from Redline Racing, as Diljith TS from DTS Racing with less than a second difference followed home in that order. Rai, thus, opened up a commanding 38-point lead over Narendran on the leaderboard.
Narendran was the winner in race2, he managed to win the class with a lead of over 3sec, Ritesh Rai finished second and Jason Deepak Saldanha from Mangaluru, DB Motorsports finished third. Final race of the season was bagged by Ritesh Raj from Chennai, Performance Racing, Narendran finished second while Diljith TS from Thrissur, DTS Racing finished third. Ritesh Raj from Performance Racing was the champion in the class.
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Ritesh Rai and Avik Anwar from Dhaka, Bangladesh recorded their maiden win each in a double-header. After winning the first race, Ritesh sat out the second that was won by Anwar, who has raced in the UAE and Malaysia, and is in his second season here.
In race1, Ritesh Rai with over three seconds lead was the winner followed by Pratik Sonawane from Mumbai in second position, while Raaj Bakhru also from Mumbai was third with less than a second difference.
In race2, Avik Anwar from Dhaka managed to win by keeping Localite Prashanth Tharani Singh who returned back to racing after a gap of 11years in second position with over three seconds difference. Munjal Savla from Mumbai was third with over a second difference.
It was a second win for Ritesh in the race3 with 4sec lead over the second finisher Pratik Sonawane from Mumbai, as Raaj Bakhru also from Mumbai finished third with less than two seconds difference. In Race 4 Ojas Surve from Mumbai was the winner as Avik Anwar with six seconds difference stood second and Pratik finished third. Pratik Sonawane from Mumbai was the champion in the class.
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Later, Gurugram’s Justin Singh scored his fifth win of the season by clocking 16:29.741 that gave him a 23-point advantage with just one more race to be run on Sunday and a maximum of 25 points on offer. Diana Pundole from Pune with less than a second difference settled for second position and Commissariat from Mumbai finished third with five seconds difference, he managed to be on the podium in the last stages of the race, as he managed to go past Mathroo.
Mumbai’s Zahan Commissariat, hailing from a family of racers, scored an impressive win starting from P10, the victory helped him to finish fifth in the championship. Gurugram’s Justin Singh failed to finish following an incident, but had sufficient cushion to annex the title ahead of Angad Mathroo from Chandigarh by five points. Mathroo came in second behind Commissariat and ahead of Pune’s Diana Pundole, who ended up third in the championship.