Home track advantage is one of the reasons why rookie driver Jacob Douglas has high expectations heading into the third and final round of the 2021 New Zealand Formula Ford Championship this Saturday.
The Mike Pero Motorsport Park in Christchurch hosts the round as part of the Formula Ford Festival which will see 30 Class 1 and Class 2 single seaters competing in three races.
“I’m feeling pretty good,” Douglas said. “We had a strong South Island Formula Ford round here at Ruapuna back in March, so I am confident we have the pace there, so will be aiming quite high, hoping for podiums.”
As well as the usual competitors from the South Island Series, a strong and competitive contingent of North Island competitors are making the trip south for the racing as well as celebrating the 40th anniversary of the South Island Formula Ford Club and 50 years of Formula Ford racing in New Zealand. Nearly 70 Formula Fords will be competing across five different classes.
“Obviously, the North Islanders will be on the pace straight away, adding them into the mix will be pretty interesting with Zac (Christensen) and Jack (Noble-Adams) as well, so really looking forward to it.”
Douglas made his single seater debut late in 2020 after a number of successful years competing in both domestic and international kartsport competition.
After missing the opening two rounds of the South Island Formula Ford competition, he managed to finish sixth overall and top rookie driver for the season.
The team has also been competing in the NZ Formula Ford championship which held the first two rounds in the North Island. Douglas currently sits in seventh position in a four-way fight for fourth overall.
“Like the previous rounds, qualifying will be key,” said Douglas. “All the other rounds have been so close, so grid position will be important and will make my job a lot easier. Hopefully up at the front.
“It will be pretty cool to take part in the festival as well, with 30 cars in the class, even my karting coach Matt Hamilton will be on the grid.”
Friday sees practice and testing with qualifying and three races over Saturday, with free entry for spectators.
Main Image: Euan Cameron Photography