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Rao and MacLeod share British Formula 3 spoils at Snetterton

Sunday, June 22 2014

Matt Rao and Sam MacLeod shared the wins in two attrition-hit Cooper Tires British Formula 3 races at Snetterton today (Sunday).

In the opening race of the day, Camren Kaminsky took the lead off the reverse-grid start from second place, with Rao and Martin Cao following behind. Pole position starter Li Zhi Cong fell to fourth place ahead of MacLeod and Andy Chang.

MacLeod made up a place on lap three before Cong dropped out of the race at Riches corner. MacLeod then passed Rao to move up to third and the top three pulled clear as the Fortec duo began to hassle Kaminsky for the race lead.

However, Cao retired on lap 11, leaving McLeod with the perfect opportunity to work on taking the race lead. He instantly closed on Kaminsky and feinted a move at Riches on lap 13. Despite the increased pressure, Kaminsky attempted to hold his nerve and resist his rival's advances.

On lap 16 MacLeod made his move but the leader spun and in the ensuing confusion Rao, who had been tracking the fight, assumed the lead. With MacLeod four seconds behind, he could do nothing in the remaining two laps but halve the gap, leaving Rao to take the spoils.

Cooper Tires British F3 Championship Race two
1, Matt Rao, Fortec Motorsport, +18 Laps
2, Sam MacLeod, Fortec Motorsport, +2.063s
3, Andy Chang, Double R, +11.690s
4, Camren Kaminsky, Double R, +3 Laps
5, Martin Cao, Fortec Motorsport, +5 Laps
6, Li Zhi Cong, Carlin, +6 Laps

A poor start for MacLeod in race three handed Rao the lead into Riches, with Kaminsky attacking, whilst Cao took second place. Kaminsky did get third from MacLeod but only temporarily, and the three Fortec cars held the podium places in the early running, with Kaminsky dropping to fifth behind Chang.

MacLeod latched onto the tail of his team mates, and benefitted when Cao attempted to take the lead, and tangled with Rao. The latter continued, albeit at the tail of the field, and the safety car was called into service as a consequence. This gave Rao another chance to attack, and he needed little invitation, taking two places within little more than a lap. However, passing Chang proved to be a much tougher challenge, and this assured MacLeod of a second victory, with Rao having to settle for third place.

Cooper Tires British F3 Championship Race three
1, Sam MacLeod, Fortec Motorsport, 16 Laps
2, Andy Chang, Double R, +6.628s
3, Matt Rao, Fortec Motorsport, +7.071s
4, Camren Kaminsky, Double R, +10.723s
5, Li Zhi Cong, Carlin, +11.336s
6, Martin Cao, Fortec Motorsport, +9 Laps

Tickets for the British GT and F3 Championships at Snetterton on 21/22 June are available on the gate for £22 on Sunday, with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information, or to book tickets click here.