With the horrors of the season opening Formula 4 round removed from the memory bank,
DREAM Motorsport's Thomas Randle bounced back in fine style at Queensland Raceway last
weekend, claiming pole position, one race win, two second place finishes and a new category
lap record. By finishing the weekend in second place overall the 19-year-old has now vaulted
into second place in the championship points with five rounds still left to run.
A career first pole position came after a torrid qualifying session shootout between Randle
and championship leader Jordan Lloyd, with Randle finding more and more speed with every
passing lap, eventually recording three lap times quicker than his title rival, despite the small
margin between the two. Both drivers were well clear of the third fastest car of Harry Hayek,
whose best lap was 0.4s slower than Randle's pole time.
RACE 1 (Grid set by first qualifying session times) Start: 1st Finish: 2nd
After a slow start from the dirty side of the road Randle chased race leader Lloyd hard
throughout as the pair pulled well clear of third placed Hayek, but try as he might Randle
could not manage to launch a passing manoeuvre. Both drivers recorded almost identical
times during their race long battle with Lloyd coming home the victor, just under one second
ahead after 12 laps of intense racing.
RACE 2 (Grid the reverse top six from R1 result) Start: 5nd Finish: 1st
A better getaway but not enough to hold Lloyd at bay, with the race one winner charging into
the lead on lap two. Randle was fourth at the end of lap one, third after two racing laps then
moved up into second spot on lap four with some bold and clean passing. Charging up to the
race leader on lap five then making a great outside pass at Turn 3 the very next time around
saw Randle away and into the lead in clean air. Not content he set a new lap record to come
home with his first career Formula 4 win, taking the chequered flag 2.1s ahead of Lloyd.
RACE 3 (Grid set by second fastest qualifying lap) Start: 1st Finish: 2nd
A better start saw Randle attempting to run side by side with Lloyd into the first turn but the
move wasn't quite on and second place was the result. Lacking the outright speed needed to
genuinely mount a challenge, Randle could do nothing about Lloyd's race three pace and
decided it best to preserve his second place for the race and round.
CHAMPIONSHIP By virtue of winning two of the three races Lloyd has slightly extended his
points margin over Thomas from 35 to 39 points with five rounds and 415 points still up for
Thomas Randle: “This was a much better weekend for us and the championship battle is
now well and truly on. Our car was fast in qualifying after having some braking issues in
practice, and I was delighted to record my first 'official' pole positions after being eliminated
from qualifying and losing my pole positions at Townsville. These cars are quite difficult to
get off the line and I think we need to make some adjustments to the clutch, while it's also
hard to follow another car closely through the high-speed corners without losing aero grip.
"We learned a great deal this weekend and race two was a real highlight for me. Chasing
Jordan (Lloyd) and passing him around the outside at Turn 3 was great fun and he gave me
just enough room for it to come off. I am also delighted to have set a new lap record for the
Formula 4 category and think the next race at Sydney Motorsport Park will suit my driving
style and our car set up quite well."
NEXT RACE Round 3 of the seven round CAMS Jayco Australian Formula 4 Championship
will be held at Sydney Motorsport Park, Eastern Creek during the weekend of August 21-23.