Christian Mansell took pole position ahead of Alex Crosbie for the Formula Regional Oceania feature race at Taupo.
Mansell, who had already set the pace in pre-event testing, practice and then qualifying the previous day, topped the order early in the weekend’s second qualifying session and remained in first place until the chequered flag.
Second place looked set to go the way of M2 Competition’s Liam Sceats until a late flying lap from Crosbie made it a front row lock-out for Giles Motorsport.
Electrical problems in the Kiwi Motorsport-run car of Patrick Woods-Toth brought him to a stop on track at the six-minute mark of the 15-minute session, prompting a red flag stoppage. Most of the field had managed just two laps before that, with Mansell ahead of Sceats and Kaleb Ngatoa.
Toth’s car was restarted and he returned to the pits so the session could be restarted.
Mansell immediately improved his pace, dropping the provisional pole laptime down to 1m23.540s. It would be an unsurmountable time, with Crosbie 0.349 seconds slower in second.
Race one winner Roman Bilinski was in 14th on the timesheet when the red flags were waved. He improved to fifth after the restart, and then to third before the chequered flag. Crosbie’s final lap meant Bilinski dropped back a spot to fourth, ahead of Ngatoa and Gerrard Xie.
Toth was able to get out again and set a laptime good enough for seventh on the grid. Michael Shin, Elliot Cleary and Nicola Lacorte completed the top 10.
|Landan Matriano Lim