07 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Matharoo leads Volkswagen Polo R-Cup India 2014 after opening races

Volkswagen Polo R Cup 2014:  Coimbatore

The Volkswagen Polo R Cup 2014 got off to a thrilling start on 31 May-1 June at the Kari Motor Speedway in Coimbatore. Singh Matharoo won the opening race ahead of Anshul Manoj Shah and Lee Keshav Gupta – Karminder Pal Singh originally crossed the line in first position but was later given a penalty for having overtaken Shah under yellow flags.

An eventful start saw pole position winner Karthik Tharani Singh colliding with Shah at the beginning of lap one. The red flags were brought out, and although Shah could restart the race, Singh was unable to, due to the amount of damage his Polo TSI racer sustained. Gupta held the lead ahead of Shah, and Karminder Singh moved up into fourth position on lap four.

Shah continued to put pressure on race leader Gupta, and on lap nine made his move. Both cars touched, giving Shah the lead and demoting Gupta to fourth. Karminder Singh took advantage, attacking Shah, taking the lead at the start of lap 10. But his lead was short-lived.

While he crossed the line first, a post-race investigation saw him penalised for overtaking Shah on yellow flags. This resulted in a 30-second penalty, demoting him to 10th place.

Matharoo, meanwhile, who started in ninth position, was thrilled to inherit the victory and take the early lead in the championship. ‘It is not the best way to take the win but after a tough qualifying session I am very happy to win the race.

‘To start ninth on the grid and then win the very first race of the season is an exhilarating feeling. After an average performance in the qualifying, I am delighted to have been able to put in 100 per cent in the race and having won it!’ he commented.

Race two was won by Bonnie Thomas, following a battle with Matharoo and Anindith Reddy. The second race of the season saw the top five drivers separated by five seconds.

Thomas, a rally driver as well as a circuit racer, started in pole position, with Matharoo in eighth. Thomas started well, holding onto his lead, even after a safety car incident, with Reddy in second place.

Matharoo worked his way up the field, passing Reddy for second position. Spending five laps ion the tail of Thomas, he couldn’t find a way through, and ended the race on the second step of the podium. Reddy kept up the pace and came home third.

‘I just joined Volkswagen Polo R-Cup to learn. This round has been tough, my fellow drivers have been really good, but starting on pole gave me the advantage,’ he commented after his win.

Sirish Vissa, Head of Volkswagen Motorsport India, was happy to start the season in such an exciting manner. He said: ‘This is a very nice way for me to start here as the new Head of Volkswagen Motorsport India.

‘My team has been excellent since the beginning of the season and have worked hard behind the scenes. Our focus this year has been to invest in drivers and their development. What remains constant though is our endeavour of grooming of young racing talent in India from grass roots level.

‘With the inclusion of a mid-season test drive and a mid-season fitness camp we strive to increase drivers’ development.’

Volkswagen Motorsport India runs the Volkswagen Polo R-Cup India 2014 series in conjunction with JK Tyres. The field of young largely Indian racers drive identical and centrally-prepared 1.4-litre TSI-engined, 178bhp Polo R-Cup cars.

JK TYRE VOLKSWAGEN POLO R CUP 2014,

DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP

1 Angad Singh Matharoo, 54
2 Bonnie Thomas, 43
3 Anindith Reddy, 35
4 Anshul Manoj Shah, 34
5 Lee Keshav Gupta, 33

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