Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016
Lando Norris extended his lead in the New Zealand Toyota Racing Series after a third win in as many weekends.
The 16-year-old Bristol Sport Racing start put on a dominant display in the first race at Hampton Downs to take maximum points.
And although the remainder of the weekend didn’t quite go to plan, he did enough to go 52 points clear in the driver standings.
The 2015 MSA Formula champion said: “It was a pretty good weekend. The team was really pleased to get another win and extend my lead.
“I got my fifth pole in qualifying out of the six so far, so I was a bit disappointed not to make it six out of six.
“The second and third races could have also been better, but it’s the way it goes sometimes.”
Lando topped the times in three of the six practice sessions and took this pace into qualifying.
With red flags eating up time, he managed to get the fastest lap in the first and was narrowly beaten to first in the second.
Starting in pole for the first race, Lando got off to a great start and had a two-and-a-half second lead by the end of lap two.
The lead had been shorted by a second when he comfortably finished in first place, knowing he had more left in the tank had he needed it.
Race two was a reverse grid of eight after a draw from a hat, leaving Lando in eighth at the start.
He had moved into fifth place when another driver tried to take him around the outside as he was taking a corner, causing them to make contact.
With his car damaged, he could only finish in 17th place at the end and was further disappointed to find out he would face a six-place grid drop in the final race for his part in the contact.
Starting in eighth in the third race, Lando got a good start and into sixth, but despite a few attempts to push on, couldn’t get in front of the fifth-placed driver.
A red flag with two laps to go gave him a glimmer of hope at the restart when he briefly made it into fifth, but he was overtaken on the outside near the end of the race and so had to make do with sixth place.
He added: “The pace was great again all weekend and the team did a really good job.
“The contact in race two not only stopped me finishing higher, but also prevented me getting more points in the final race due to the penalty which was frustrating.
“It wasn’t a big problem though, I’m here to learn and it’s been a great experience so far.”