The penultimate day of the Grand Finals came to a close yesterday, with just 34 of the drivers in each category through to the finals today. The most dominating performances in the heats came from Pierce Lehane in Seniors and Ben Cooper in DD2. They both won all 3 of their heats. Bruno Borlido in Juniors won his first two heats, and was 2nd yesterday, saying he didn’t want to risk anything because he knew 2nd would be enough to secure pole for the pre-final. The weather forecast is for a dry track today, unlike yesterday which had most heats run under wet conditions. Ben Cooper was particularly impressive in the wet, but also seemed to have a slight edge on his rivals in the dry.
Indonesian driver Senna SN made it to the senior final this year after crashing out of the 2nd chance race at last years Grand Finals. He will start the pre-final in 27th position. His compatriot Silvano Christian never found the pace to challenge for a place in the final stages, and had an unlucky start to his 2nd chance race which ended any chance of getting through.
Japanese driver Yoshito Matsumoto – familiar to those that hace taken part in the Rotax Max Asia Challenge – was unlucky having missed the gate closing for his 3rd heat. This meant he started the 2nd chance race in 8th place with a good chance to make it through to the finals, but a start-line crash dropped him to the back of the field with a damaged kart.
In DD2 Malaysian driver Chen Jet Choong put in a strong performance in the 2nd chance race moving up from 32nd to 21st, while Ameya Bafna from India was close, finishing in 23rd having started in 28th.
The top 5 after the qualifying heats which determine the starting order for the pre-final:
Pierce Lehane – Australia
Ferenc Kancsar – Hungary
Charlie Eastwood – Ireland
Harrison Scott – United Kingdom
Ukyo Sasahara – Japan
Bruno Borlido – Portugal
Josh White – United Kingdom
Kazuto Kotaka – Japan
Samu Kylmala – Finland
Ben Cooper – Canada
Simon Wagner – Austria
Xen De Ruwe – Belgium
Nicholas Latifi – Canada
Henrique Baptista – Portugal
Cristiano Morgado – South Africa
Scott Campbell – Canada
David Griffiths – United Kingdom
Martin Pierce – Ireland
Mika Salo – Finland