Chennai, Feb 9 (IANS) Jamie Chadwick, one of only two female drivers on the grid, scored a fine win to move into the championship lead, just one point ahead of Max Defourny, in the third and final round of the MRF Challenge, at the Madras Motor Racing Track here on Saturday.
With three more races to be run on Sunday, Chadwick from the UK, who has won four races in 12 starts, has 218 points to Belgian Defourny’s 217.
Chadwick, 20, starting Race-2 second on the reverse grid, had a brilliant start as she moved past pole-sitter Dylan Young of Australia and over the 20 laps, built up a sizeable lead for a deserving win, her fourth in 12 starts in the championship.
Young finished second, almost a second behind Chadwick, while German Andreas Estner took the third spot.
For Defourny, 20, it has been a disappointing weekend thus far, having garnered just 10 points from two races on Saturday.
Satisfied with her Saturday’s performance, Chadwick said: “I had a good start today and went into the lead. I then managed to hold on to my advantage. In the context of the championship, every point matters to me. I am happy. Tomorrow, with three races to be run, it is going to be a long day and I hope I can collect the points.”
Earlier, in Race-1, Pasma, starting from pole position, had a great start and after surviving strong challenge in the first lap, gradually pulled away to complete a comfortable win, his second in the championship.
“I had a good start and managed to open a big gap. I am happy that I scored my second win of the championship,” said 18-year old Pasma from Finland.
Behind the leader, Michelangelo Amendola (Belgium) also came through for second spot without being seriously challenged while 16-year-old Jack Doohan (Australia), son of former five-time World 500cc champion Mick Doohan, completed the podium with an impressive drive.
Championship leader Defourny finished a forlorn seventh, the same position he had started the race from, while his arch-rival Chadwick, did well to gain a spot to finish fifth and collect crucial points to narrow the leeway with the Belgian.