Okayama, Japan – Richard Bradley (19/Eurasia Motorsport) was crowned 2010 Formula BMW Pacific champion after the Singapore-based driver won Round 13, to take the overall Drivers Classification and the Rookie Cup titles.
While pole-sitter Yuichi Nakayama (18/Asia Racing Team) took the chequered flag, the Japanese driver was subsequently excluded due to a technical infringement. Bradley, who crossed the line 2.151 seconds behind Nakayama, was awarded the win. Calvin Wong (MAS/18/PETRONAS Mofaz Racing) finished second in Round 13, while Oscar Tunjo (COL/Meritus) rounded out the podium.
With 41 points on offer, Bradley’s unassailable lead of 62 makes him the first driver since Earl Bamber in 2006 to win both the Drivers Classification and Rookie Cup in the same year. Until today, Tunjo was the only other driver who still had a shot at the titles, and he is now in the lead for the runner-up position. Formula BMW Pacific Junior Jordan Oon (AUS/20/E-Rain Racing), who finished 9th, lies in third place and, as the battle shifts from winner to runner-up, expect Tunjo, Oon and Wong to fight hard in the final two Formula BMW Pacific races.
Nakayama got off to a perfect start, with Bradley quickly moving from fourth on the grid up to second in the order. Tunjo lost a place off the start, dropping to third, with Wong close behind. Dustin Sofyan (INA/16/Eurointernational) who started third on the grid, fell back to fifth, where he ultimately finished.
For the next few laps, Bradley stayed close to Nakayama, while Tunjo was kept busy defending from a determined Wong. On lap 8, Wong finally got the better of Tunjo and overtook to go third, where the Malaysian would remain for the rest of the race.
After getting by Tunjo, Wong began to close on the new champion. On the final lap, the two made contact, but Wong was unable to get by.
Formula BMW Pacific Junior Jesse Dixon (AUS/18/Atlantic Racing Team) moved up seven places to finish sixth overall. Fellow Junior Kotaro Sakurai (JPN/15/Eurasia Motorsport) also had his result excluded due to a technical infraction, while James Birch (GBR/17/Atlantic Racing Team) was penalized 30 seconds for crowding another car beyond the edge of the track.
Tomorrow’s penultimate race of the season takes place at the Okayama International Circuit, while the season finale will be held in support of the 57th Macau Grand Prix next month.
Formula BMW Pacific Driver Quotes:
Richard Bradley, 1st and Top Rookie Round 13 and 2010 Formula BMW Pacific Drivers Classification and Rookie Cup winner: “As with every race, I went into this one thinking I could win. I had some mistakes in qualifying, but I think we got 75 per cent of them fixed. I knew I was quick at the start and managed to get to second. Towards the end of the race, I dropped off a bit. I do think I had good chance to win. I’m thrilled to have won the championship and now for the last two races there’s no pressure and I can finally have a race with some of the guest drivers without worrying about the consequences. I think one of the reasons why I’ve been so consistent this year is because of age and maturity. I’m 19-year old and I can calculate these things better. It’s been a great year, I’ve really gelled with the team and it’s been a great learning process.”
Calvin Wong, 2nd Round 13: “I started the race fifth, but then after fighting with Dustin, I was able to get into fourth. It took a little while to catch up to Oscar and then I drove a perfect lap without any mistakes and I was able to catch Oscar and overtake him. After that I tried to narrow the gap between Richard and I. On the last two laps I got close to him, but I just couldn’t get by him.”