Lando Norris emphatically wins Spirit of a Nation Trophy in second round of Toyota Racing Series
Lando Norris has firmly claimed the tagline “one to watch” following a definitive performance in the feature race of the second round of the Toyota Racing Series at Teretonga Park in Invercargill this afternoon.
Taking home the Spirit of a Nation Trophy one gets the feeling this will certainly not be his last. At only sixteen years old, Norris is one of the youngest in the field and joined the Toyota Racing Series as the youngest ever winner of the World Karting Championship.
He is using the Toyota Racing Series as a stepping stone into a season of European Formula Three or Formula Renault in 2016.
Starting on pole Norris extended his lead throughout the race hampered only by a safety car in lap 14 which bunched the field up again but he pulled away and comfortably took the checkered flag first.
Local fans out in force at Teretonga Park to watch the action were thrilled to watch local racer and last year’s Cup winner, Brendon Leitch (20) stomp across in second. He never really challenged Norris but developed a clear gap of tarmac back to the Russian third place getter Artem Markelov (21).
The two other Kiwi racers, Canterbury’s James Munro (18) and Pukekohe local Taylor Cockerton (18) finished 9th and 11th respectively.
Toyota Racing Series, Race #3 Results (Top 10 only):
- L Norris (UK) 53.500 (secs)
- B Leitch (New Zealand) 53.793
- A Markelov (Russia) 53.951
- F Habsburg (Austria) 53.857
- D de Francesco (Canada) 54.230
- B Baptista (Brazil) 54.210
- K Laliberte (Canada) 53.988
- G Zhou (China) 54.055
- J Munro (New Zealand) 54.046
- P Piquet (Brazil) 54.016
Toyota Racing Series Points – after six of 15 races:
1, Norris, 380 points; 2, Markelov, 346; 3, Habsburg, 303; 4, Leitch, 300; 5, Zhou, 289; 6, Daruvala, 282; 7, Piquet, 271; 8, Ptak, 185; 9, Cockerton, 184; 10, DeFrancesco, 175.
Featuring many of world motorsport's rising stars, the five-round series heads to Hampton Downs, north of Hamilton for round three next weekend.
Toyota Racing Series 2016 Race Calendar:
Round 1 13 -17 Jan 2016 Mike Pero Motorsport Park, Ruapuna, Christchurch, Lady Wigram Trophy
Round 2 21 - 24 Jan 2016 Teretonga Park, Invercargill, Spirit of a Nation Trophy
Round 3 28 – 31 Jan 2016 Hampton Downs, New Zealand Motor Cup
Round 4 04 – 07 Feb 2016 Taupo Motorsport Park, Taupo, Denny Hulme Memorial Trophy
Round 5 11 - 14 Feb 2016 Manfeild, Feilding, New Zealand Grand Prix (along with the Dan Higgins Trophy and Dorothy Smith Memorial Cup)
In the supporting Toyota 86 class it the two-car CareVets team owned the day. Ryn Yardley won this morning’s 10 lap race and his team-mate Michael Scott won the final 15 lapper. It is Michael’s second race win of the series. Points leader Ash Blewett was second and Callum Quin finished third.