Volkswagen Motorsport India’s first round of the 2019 National Championship Ameo Class saw Jeet Jhabakh secure the lead with two wins out of three races. The Hyderabad-based driver was at his dominant best winning Races 1 and 3 over the weekend, while Race 2 was one by Bangladesh based driver Avik Anwar. Also cementing his position at the end of the first round of the one-make series was Anmol Singh Sahil who finished on the podium consistently in all three races. The Volkswagen Ameo Class is now part of the National Car Racing Championship with the series winner crowned as a national champion.
The new season saw the race spec Volkswagen Ameo cars benefitting from new MRF tyres, revised suspension set-up and braking to the 18 cars on the grid. The series this year has nine new drivers and nine old competitors participating in the championship.
The first race saw Jeet Jhabakh as one of the strong drivers having taken the pole position in qualifying with a lap time of 1m09.571s.
The first race saw Jeet Jhabakh as one of the strong drivers having taken the pole position in qualifying with a lap time of 1m09.571s. The driver was joined by Pratik Sonawane on the first row, while drivers Saurav Bandopadhyay and Anmol Singh Sahil stated in third and fourth places respectively, in the second row. It’s interesting to note that the grid was separated by just 2.5 seconds including both junior and pro drivers behind the wheel. Jeet led Race 1 right from the opening lap fending of the attack from Pratik on the first corner on a damp track. Pratik, however, was unable to match up to Jeet’s pace and was passed by Anmol and Saurav soon after. The top three drivers maintained their positions for the remainder of the race with Jeet picking up his first victory of the season, while both Saurav and Anmol finished second and third respectively.
The second race on Sunday saw the top eight finishers start from the back thanks to the reverse grid. Viraj Jhala was on pole, followed by Avik Anwar, while drivers Aiman Sadat of Bangladesh and Siddharth Mehdiratta started in third and fourth places respectively. The race saw Pratik climb up the order from the back of the grid after a brilliant start and took the lead, and was followed by Avik and Aiman at P2 and P3. The top three positions remained the same for the remainder of the race, but Pratik was handed a 10 second penalty that pushed him down to seventh, snatching away his first victory. This promoted Avik to the top with Aiman coming in second and Anmol finishing third, having worked his way up from the bottom.
The third race turned out to be one of the cleanest yet in the championship with no contact between the drivers.
The third race of the weekend saw the grid positions jumbled once again based on the second best lap times during Friday’s qualifying session. Jeet was back on pole followed by Pratik and Saurav Bandopadhyay in third place. The third race turned out to be one of the cleanest yet in the championship with no contact between the drivers. Jeet was off to a flying start from the opening lap and defended his position in against attacks from Anmol and Pratik. The top three drivers were quick to detach from the rest of the pack with Jeet cementing his lead comfortably with a sizeable margin. Meanwhile, Anmol and Pratik battled for second place. Anmol thwarted several attacks from Pratik’s Ameo taking his third podium finish of the weekend.
He added, “This year, we are also happy to be recognized as the class of Indian National Racing Championship which means whoever wins the series this season will be recognized as the Indian National Racing Champion, so that is something which I am really proud of. The crowning glory for us is the fact that the best lap for the first 16 drivers out of 18 was within a second. This is a testament to how well the technical team prepares the cars and how evenly matched all of them are.”
Jeet and Anmol are currently leading the Volkswagen Ameo national championship in terms of points. The season will now head to Chennai’s Madras Motor Race Track for the next three rounds that will be held in July, August and October respectively. The MMRT is a far more demanding track in comparison and will truly put the drivers to test once again. Round 1 has been a promising start to the season.
Source: Read Full Article