The stage is set for the fifth and final round of the MRF MMSC FMSCI National Car Racing Championship over the weekend at the MMRT track at nearby Sriperumbudur, with titles in all the categories up for grabs and not much separating the main contenders in terms of points.
The card for the final round has a total of 14 races. The premier MRF F1600 category will have a total of seven races, including three carried over from the rain-affected fourth round last month. That apart, it will be double-headers in the saloon cars and Formula LGB 1300 categories, besides three races slated for the Volkswagen Ameo Class. With titles in all these categories still to be decided, the weekend is expected to dish out edge-of-the-seat thrillers that have been a feature of the championship thus far.
Chairman of the Meet Vicky Chandhok said in a press release that the final round, this weekend, should provide a fitting climax to the season. The MRF F1600 grid is packed with a bunch of talented youngsters who have progressed from karting to single-seaters with a series of impressive performances.
Leading the pack is Bengaluru’s 18-year old Sohil Shah with 83 points after having won three consecutive races. He has an 18-point cushion on second-placed Nayan Chatterjee from Mumbai with Chennai’s Vishnu Prasad (58) and Sandeep Kumar (56), and Coimbatores A Bala Prasath (55) not far behind. The two classes in the saloon cars category the Indian Touring Cars (ITC) and Super Stock are poised for a close finish.
Coimbatore veteran Arjun Balu (148 points), driving the Race Concepts-prepared Honda City Vtec, comfortably leads Kolhapur’s Dhruv Shivaji Mohite (119) who is one of the three Volkswagen factory-supported Vento drivers.
Another Coimbatore challenger, Nikanth Ram (Arka Motorsport) is placed third with 93 points, ahead of VW duo of Karthik Tharani (86) from Chennai and Hyderabad’s Ishaan Dodhiwala (85). Balu has won three races as against two each by Mohite and Tharani while Dodhiwala has scored maximum points in one outing. Bengaluru’s Rithvik Thomas (Race Concepts) and local lad RP Raja Rajan (Performance Racing) will be going head-to-head for the title in the Super Stock category with just 17 points separating the two. Thomas leads with 172 points to Rajan’s 155, both having won four races apiece.
Chennai’s 20-year old Ashwin Datta (Momentum Motor Sports) is best placed to seal the championship in the Formula LGB 1300 as he leads Sohil Shah (M Sport) by 50 points, needing just one point from this weekend’s two races to annex the championship in this category.
In the VW Ameo Class, the top four Saurav Bandyopadhyay (Mumbai, 305 points), Siddharth Mehdiratta (Lucknow, 298), Pratik Sonawane (Pune, 294) and Jeet Jhabakh (Hyderabad, 284) remain in contention for top honours.