Formula First rookie Zach Blincoe is targeting more success fresh from scoring his maiden series win at Manfeild last weekend.
Blincoe claimed two of three wins over the sixth round of the championship, elevating him to third in the series standings.
The 15-year-old says both wins were a reward for his newly found confidence in himself and the car over the last few rounds.
“It was awesome to get my first win, not just in Formula First but in any race car,” Blincoe told Velocity News. “The support and congratulations I received from everyone afterwards were just amazing.
“I came into the round feeling the most confident I had had all season. Manfeild was also a track that I knew more than all the others we had been to, which helped me get on the pace.
“In qualifying we couldn’t string a lap together, so I started sixth. But after qualifying I had some small change to the engine, which made me more comfortable before the start of race one.”
From sixth on the grid, Blincoe never lost touch with the front runners and held the lead heading into the final corner of the last lap. However, a slick move by Liam Foster ensured that the points leader took the chequered flag by half a car length.
Putting aside the disappointment of losing a maiden win at the line, Blincoe bounced back to win his first career win the next day. He then backed that victory up with another triumph in race two.
“I probably could have won race one, but I didn’t know it was the last lap,” he said.
“I hadn’t seen the last lap board and left the door open at the final corner for [Liam Foster] to slip by. I then saw the chequered flag and was like ‘argh’. Still, I was ecstatic with second and then did even better in race two and three to get the wins.
“I feel that I have now ticked off a big achievement box. This year’s goal was to see if I could get a podium and have a shot at rookie of the year.
“But we are now third in the standings, so I can’t see why we can’t finish in the top-three in the overall points.”
Like many of his peers, Blincoe forged the base of his skillset in karting.
After five years in kartsport he and his family decided to graduate to race cars, with Formula First the logical choice for a beginner.
“[Formula First] was a big step up from karts. Everything was all new.
“There were the H-Pattern gearbox and the clutch, which was a completely different feel to the Rotax Kart that is one gear, and you can throw it around corners straight away.
“The field in Formula First is really strong and I had to also learn about slipstream and new race styles.”
Blincoe’s ultimate career ambition is to land a role as a professional GT3 driver on the international stage.
But closer to home, he is taking his racing one step at a time and is already eyeing up a second season in Formula First.
“We are probably going to do another year of Formula First. Hopefully then we can go for the championship.”
Image: Tayler Burke