Six wins from six starts as Ash Blewett dominates Toyotas
Ash Blewett is in dominant form with six wins from six starts in the 2015-2016 Toyota Finance 86 Championship.
Pursued hardest by fellow Aucklanders Callum Quin and John Penny, he won in the rain on Saturday from pole position, again on Sunday from eighth in the accident-marred partial reverse ten lap race, then led the afternoon’s final 15 lap race from pole to chequered flag.
Blewett said a multiple car crash at turn four caused him some anxious moments. Being mid-field put him right amidst the chaos as Kenny Smith and Matthew Hamilton tangled and the field wove into and around the scene.
“That second race was pretty busy. I was pretty pleased to come through that without damage, and once we got under way the main aim was to keep my championship rivals behind me. We achieved that, got through the mess and so getting through to the front was a bonus.”
A lengthy safety car period ate away the available laps and when racing resumed John Penny sped through to lead before Blewett hunted him down. Penny’s championship position made a Blewett challenge to take the lead imperative.
“We have had some great battles this weekend, John races hard but he’s very clean, we always respect each other on track,”Blewett said after that second race.
The third race of the weekend saw Blewett race out to a lead of more than ten seconds, Callum Quin quickly taking second away from Michael Scott and Penny slotting into this before being overhauled by Christchurch’s Matt Hamilton.
“This final race was really good for us, we got better pace and some clean air and were able to drive our own race. Full credit to Ash though, he’s really been on another level all weekend,” said Quin.
Tiff Chittenden stepped up into the top ten and then to ninth at the flag, having overtaken Craig Innes to engage Kenny Smith in battle to the very end.
“I’m pretty happy with the weekend, we finally got in some good laps and I was able to make some good overtaking moves so the race three result was really encouraging,” she said.
Rain or shine though, the weekend belongs to Ash Blewett, who says he will be working on maintaining his advantage when the championship resumes in January.
“It’s a great start, but as always a championship is about consistency in pace and performance. It's all about time in the car, about understanding what the car will do for you and what you need to do to be fast everywhere."