Home Featured Karting star Emilien Denner takes first car racing win in TRS

Karting star Emilien Denner takes first car racing win in TRS

by Craig Woollard

Photo: Toyota Racing NZ

M2 Competition’s Emilien Denner took his first car racing victory in the second Toyota Racing Series race at Teretonga.

Denner started the reversed grid race from pole and managed the start well to hold off Giles Motorsport’s Lirim Zendeli.

There was then a lengthy safety car period to recover the beached car of Zendeli’s team-mate Henning Enqvist from the gravel.

Denner managed his first restart from the front superbly, and through the remainder of the 20-lap contest was able to maintain a gap to Zendeli, who came under intense pressure from M2’s reigning champion Liam Lawson late on.

Victory for Denner marked only his fifth race since the international karting champion joined single-seaters.

Lawson, who started third but was passed by team-mate Ido Cohen off the line, pressured Zendeli for only the last segment of the race as he took some time to pass Cohen.

Zendeli then resisted Lawson’s pressure to take his best result of the season, while Lawson rounded out the podium.

Red Bull junior Yuki Tsunoda charged his way from 11th on the grid to seventh, although all but one of those positions were gained on the opening lap.

It was MTEC Motorsport by R-ace GP’s Caio Collet who provided the sternest challenge, with the pair dicing for a couple of laps before Honda junior Tsunoda worked his way down the inside with the help of a double tow from M2 team-mate Igor Fraga, who was in front of both.

The trio finished sixth (Fraga), seventh (Tsunoda) and eighth (Collet) respectively. In front, a lonely fifth, was Kiwi Motorsport’s Franco Colapinto.

MTEC’s Jackson Walls, who is set to start race three from pole, had to begin from the pitlane and was only able to work his way up to 16th.

Race results

Pos Name Team Time
1 Emilien Denner M2 Competition 20 laps
2 Lirim Zendeli Giles Motorsport +0.684s
3 Liam Lawson M2 Competition +1.043s
4 Ido Cohen M2 Competition +1.645s
5 Franco Colapinto Kiwi Motorsport +2.203s
6 Igor Fraga M2 Competition +2.522s
7 Yuki Tsunoda M2 Competition +3.071s
8 Caio Collet MTEC by R-ace GP +3.928s
9 Gregoire Saucy Giles Motorsport +5.585s
10 Jose Blanco-Chock Kiwi Motorsport +6.529s
11 Petr Ptacek MTEC by R-ace GP +8.489s
12 Oliver Rasmussen MTEC by R-ace GP +8.813s
13 Lucas Petersson MTEC by R-ace GP +10.278s
14 Spike Kohlbecker Kiwi Motorsport +12.886s
15 Axel Gnos Kiwi Motorsport +14.907s
16 Jackson Walls MTEC by R-ace GP +15.029s
17 Rui Andrade M2 Competition +18.389s
Ret Henning Enqvist Giles Motorsport
Fastest lap: Fraga, 53.829s

Championship standings
1 Lawson 118   2 Fraga 105   3 Saucy 98   4 Zendeli 95   5 Colapinto 90   6 Tsunoda 85   7 Cohen 71   8 Denner 66   9 Ptacek 63   10 Collet 61