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Apr 6, 2015

Capo Sweeps Sandown, assumes early title lead

LOCAL HOPE Ricky Capo won his maiden Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship round this weekend at Sandown after rival Jon Collins struck dramas in the feature race of the round.

Collins was leading the 18-lap feature however struck issues on lap six when he momentarily slowed coming out of the Dandenong Road corner, allowing Capo to pounce and grab a race lead he’d never lose.



After stalling on the grid, Roland Legge charged through the field to finish second outright while Collins did the same after his disappointment – grabing third place with three laps remaining to at least get on the podium in the opening round of the championship.

Like Spalding won the National Class while Andrew Roberts sealed the Kumho Cup – both drivers on debut this weekend.

After one round of the championship, Ricky Capo leads the standings ahead of Roland Legge, Mygale pilot Trent Shirvington, Jon Collins and Shane Ryding. 

The Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit will host the next round of the Gold Star in late May this year.

QUALIFYING + RACE 1:

A LAST LAP pass set up Ricky Capo for his maiden victory in the Gold Star, the Victorian driver scything pass Jon Collins on the final lap to score his debut victory in the category.

Gilmour Racing driver Collins led the race early from pole position – his first in Formula 3 - but a mid-race Safety Car slowed his progress and brought Capo back into contention. After spending several laps closing on the leader, he attacked on the final lap and passed the leader after running side-by-side across the top of the daunting rise in the back straight.

It was the first win for the Melbourne teenager who impressed in his rookie season last year. Capo has upgraded to a new Dallara this season; a car once used by current Formula 1 driver Sergio Perez in Europe.

Formula Vee graduate Luke Spalding finished third outright on his debut in the category and also won the National class as well.

PRACTICE:

THE two drivers expected to battle fiercely for the outright title in this year’s Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship have nothing between them after practice today at Sandown Raceway.

McDonald’s Gilmour Racing driver Jon Collins and Jani-King driver Ricky Capo were separated by just 0.1 seconds after two sessions today, Collins’ 1m08.7369s lap just edging out the local driver’s similar Dallara.

Roland Legge (R-Tek Dallara) was third overall with Gilmour’s second singing, Luke Spalding, fourth in his 2007-spec Dallara.

The wings-and-slicks racers will qualify tomorrow with a brand new format for the first time – as well as the quickest time of the session deciding pole for race one, the second fastest time in the session will decide the grid for Sunday’s all-important feature.

Head to www.thenationals.com.au for detailed information about every round of this year's Gold Star championship.