Coimbatore: The anti-clockwise circuit here at the Kari Motor Speedway has a bridge which connects the media tower and pit lanes at the race start with lights hanged with the support of the bridge.
If one stands on the bridge, one gets to observe the action happening over the entire 2.1 kilometre track.
On Saturday, the gusty winds made their presence felt through out the day, and only the roaring engines suppressed the sound of gushing winds as the action unfolded in the Free Practice and Qualifying sessions in Volkswagon Ameo Cup.
Kolhapur’s Dhruv Mohite, who’s known for his consistency on the grid, once again showed his class as he qualified third, 0.773 seconds behind the leader Karminder Pal Singh, who dominated the day’s proceedings.
The Delhi lad, who topped both the practice sessions lapped the circuit in 1 minute, 09:368 seconds, ahead of Chennai’s Sandeep Kumar who was 0.426 seconds behind.
“It’s a new season and getting the pole in the first race is confidence boosting, so I am looking forward to the race,” said the 23-year old driver. “This year we are using GTI engine, so the car just feels amazing. We are matching the timings of ITC cars, which is a big milestone to achieve. We are using different dampers and suspensions settings, so the handling has also changed,” he added.
“There is a new technology for me to learn, which took me a while to get used to, also, the tyres provided by MRF are much better. We are lapping at a constant speed over the distance,” he further added.
Although Karminder has set the pace on an opening day, he will have to be aware of racers behind as they will look to pounce on any mistake made by the pole-sitter.
Ramaswamy wins ITC race
Bengaluru’s Ashish Ramaswamy of Red Rooster Performance team came up with a stunning drive and won the premier Indian Touring Cars class race in the MRF MMSC fmsci Indian National Racing Championship, in a concluding race of the day on Saturday.
Running second behind fellow-Bengalurean Deepak Paul Chinnappa (Race Concepts) until two of the 15 laps to go, 25-year old Ramaswamy passed the leader who was struggling with the loss of two gears, and emerged a deserving winner. The duo finished well ahead of third placed C Rajaram (Prime Racing).
Chinnappa started on the pole after defending champion and original pole-sitter Arjun Narendran (Red Rooster Performance) missed the race due to engine problems but dropped to last after failing to engage the clutch when the lights went off.
However, he fought his way back and eventually passed front-runner Ramaswamy to open up what seemed to be a winning lead. But with two laps to go, Chinnappa lost two gears and Ramaswamy seized the opportunity to regain the lead to win.
Volkswagen Ameo Cup: 1. Karminder Singh (Delhi) 01min, 09.368secs; 2. A Sandeep Kumar (Chennai) 01:09.794; 3. Dhruv Mohite (Kolhapur) 01:10.141.
Indian Touring Cars: Race 1 (15 laps): 1. Ashish Ramaswamy (Red Rooster Performance) 17mins, 57.944secs; 2. Deepak Paul Chinnappa (Race Concepts) 17:58.457; 3. C Rajaram (Prime Racing) 18:27.020.
Qualifying: Indian Touring Cars: 1. Arjun Narendran (Red Rooster Performance) 01min, 09.658secs; 2. Deepak Paul Chinnappa (Race Concepts 01:09.715; 3. Ashish Ramaswamy (Red Rooster Performance) 01:09.833.