- Chirag Ghorpade tops MRF F2000 race
- Double for Arjun Balu, Raghul Rangasamy
Chennai, January 8: Bengaluru’s Chirag Ghropade held his nerve to win his second race of the season in the premier MRF Formula 2000 category on the concluding day of the second round of the MRF MMSC fmsci Indian National Car Racing Championship 2022 at the Madras International Circuit, here on Sunday.
Also in the limelight were Coimbatore veteran Arjun Balu (Race Concepts) and Mamallapuram’s Raghul Rangasamy (MSport) who completed a double each this weekend in the Indian Touring Cars and the Formula LGB category, respectively.
The day’s schedule came to an abrupt end with two remaining races cancelled following the demise of Chennai racer KE Kumar in a hospital where he was attended to for the injuries he suffered in a crash during the saloon cars race.
Ghorpade, 17, did well to survive close attention from Salem’s Sai Sanjay, before crossing the finish line while Mohammed Ryan from Chennai completed the podium.
“It (the win) was a long time coming. I struggled a bit at the start as we had new tyres fitted in. Once the tyres heated up, I managed to open up a good lead, but had to defend my position at certain times,” said Ghorpade.
In contrast, Balu, starting P5 on the reverse grid, showed amazing pace as he jumped into the lead by Turn-4 in the very opening lap of the scheduled 12-lap race which was reduced to nine after it was red-flagged following the incident involving Kumar and then re-started. Thereafter, Balu again went into cruise mode to destroy the field.
Chennai’s Raja Rajan (Performance Racing) topped in the Indian Junior Touring Cars category while another local racer, Narendran S (Redline Racing) won in the Super Stock class.
Rangasamy, who earlier in the day had won the Formula LGB 1300 race after starting form P11 on the reverse grid, continued his winning-ways by topping the next outing to complete a fine double.
The third round of the championship is slated for January 20-22 at the same venue followed by the fourth and concluding round on January 27-29.
The results (Provisional):
MRF F2000 (Race-3, 10 laps): 1. Chirag Ghorpade (Bengaluru) (15mins, 48.752secs); 2. Sai Sanjay T (Salem) (15:49.462); 3. Mohamed Ryan (Chennai) 15:51.211).
Indian Touring Cars (Race-2, 9 laps): 1. Arjun Balu (Coimbatore, Race Concepts) (17:30.324); 2. Ananth Pithawalla (Mumbai, Team N1) (17:43.103); 3. Biren Pithawalla (Mumbai, Team N1) (17:44.389).
Indian Junior Touring Cars (Race-2, 9 laps): 1. Raja Rajan (Chennai, Performance Racing) (17:55.058); 2. Deepak Ravikumar (Chennai, Performance Racing) (18:02.406); 3. Akkineni Anand Prasad (Chennai, Performance Racing) (18:06.320).
Super Stock (Race-2, 9 laps): 1. Narendran (Chennai, Redline Racing) (19:18.726); 2. Ritesh Rai (Chennai, Performance Racing) (19:23.585); 3. Fahad Kutty (Mumbai, Redline Racing) (19:26.875).
Formula LGB 1300 (Race-2, 10 laps): 1. Raghul Rangasamy (Mamallapuram, MSport) (18:57.069); 2. Diljith Shaji (Thrissur, DTS Racing) (18:57.511); 3. Tijil Rao (Bengaluru, Momentum Motorsports) (18:58.585). Race-3 (8 laps): 1. Raghul Rangasamy (15:14.465); 2. Viswas Vijayaraj (Nellore, DTS Racing) (15:14.620); 3. Chetan Surineni (Bengaluru, Momentum Motorsports) (15:17.331).
MRF Saloon Cars (Toyota Etios, Race-3, 8 laps): 1. Justin Singh (Gurugram) (16:44.314); 2. Angad Mathroo (Chandigarh) (16:44.325); 3. Jai Prashanth Venkat (Coimbatore) (16:54.057).