Home Formula RegionalFRegional Oceania Bilinski denies Xie a second FRegional Oceania pole at Hampton Downs

Bilinski denies Xie a second FRegional Oceania pole at Hampton Downs

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: TGR NZ

Roman Bilinski went fastest with his final flying lap to top qualifying for Formula Regional Oceania’s third race at Hampton Downs.

The championship leader knocked Gerrard Xie off the top spot as he lapped just 0.034 seconds quicker than the driver who had taken pole for race one earlier in the weekend.

It was Xie and Michael Shin who spent most of the session swapping times at the top of the order. Xie sat comfortably in first place with three minutes left on the session clock when red flags waved.

Landan Matriano Lim had spun on track. He was able to get going again, only to come to a stop a little further along the circuit.

Xie’s benchmark at this point was a 1m29.329s, and there was only time for one flying lap from each driver when qualifying restarted. 

It did not look as if there would be much improvement in those final laps, but many of the drivers were able to shave a few hundredths of a second off their personal bests.

Bilinski, who had been fifth at the time of the red flag, managed to jump up to first place with a 1m29.285s.  Xie also improved, finding 0.01 seconds, but it was not enough to claw back pole position.

Kaleb Ngatoa improved on his final lap to go third quickest ahead of Shin and Nico Lacorte. 

Tommy Smith had a wide moment early in the session but mangaed to get his car back on track without any issues after running over wet grass. His final lap put him sixth, while Liam Sceats, second in the standings, could only qualify seventh.

Kaden Probst, Alex Crosbie and Patrick Woods-Toth rounded out the top 10. 

Qualifying results
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Roman Bilinski M2 Competition 1m29.285s 10
2 Gerrard Xie M2 Competition 1m29.319s +0.034s 10
3 Kaleb Ngatoa Giles Motorsport 1m29.406s +0.121s 9
4 Michael Shin M2 Competition 1m29.526s +0.241s 10
5 Nico Lacorte M2 Competition 1m29.540s +0.255s 10
6 Tommy Smith MTEC Motorsport 1m29.635s +0.350s 10
7 Liam Sceats M2 Competition 1m29.684s +0.399s 10
8 Kaden Probst MTEC Motorsport 1m29.778s +0.493s 10
9 Alex Crosbie Giles Motorsport 1m29.788s +0.503s 9
10 Patrick Woods-Toth Kiwi Motorsport 1m29.906s +0.621s 10
11 Elliott Cleary MTEC Motorsport 1m30.277s +0.992s 10
12 Titus Sherlock Kiwi Motorsport 1m30.291s +1.006s 10
13 Landan Matriano Lim Giles Motorsport 1m30.455s +1.170s 9
14 Jett Bowling Kiwi Motorsport 1m30.580s +1.295s 10
15 Lucas Fecury MTEC Motorsport 1m31.126s +1.841s 10
16 Jake Bonilla Kiwi Motorsport 1m31.792s +2.507s 10