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QFFC Round 1 Report: Morgan Park, 15-17 March 2024

The 2024 Queensland Formula Ford Championship commenced at Morgan Park Raceway on March 15. Half the grid was debutantes, with reining Qld Champion Jeremy Mattea and former multiple Qld Champion Tim Hamilton eyeing off a season long battle as favorites.

Tensions are high as a new season dawns. Tim Hamilton (#87) claims pole ahead of AJ Gealy (#4) and Jeremy Mattea (#3).

Grids: Race 1 Grid set by Qualifying, Race 2 and beyond ‘Progressive Grid’

Round 1 Starts: Rolling

---------- Race 1 ----------

Kyle Evans Motorsport headed the Formula Ford field home for an outright win in his Formula Ford class Duratec Spectrum 014. The highlight of the racing though was Kyle absolutely giving it to the Radical sports cars ahead of him, the time-honoured Queensland tradition of low aero and impressive power to weight ratioed Formula Fords battling the local Sports Car drivers and keeping them honest continues!

Tim Hamilton's TYREPLUS Burleigh Heads Spectrum 010b took the season opening win for Formula Ford 1600 class cars, followed by Jeremy Mattea in his Spectrum 05c and AJ Gealy in the first of the Van Diemens.

---------- Race 2 ----------

Jeremy Mattea forced his way to the front of the Kent-powered field on the opening lap. He held off Tim Hamilton for a time but eventually relinquished the top spot and Hamilton set sail for victory. Meanwhile AJ Gealy continued to work over Mattea and as is a common necessity around Morgan Park Raceway he forced an error entering the sweeper which had Mattea off line and Gealy through to race to second place. Mattea regathered to come home third.

For outright positions it was once again King Kyle Evans showing just how fast a Duratec Formula Ford can go around Morgan Park Raceway and continued the morning's fun by giving the Radical sports cars some grief

---------- Race 3 ----------

Michael Gillespie was trucking along nicely before a mid-race issue brought him to the pits. Meanwhile AJ Gealy was in all sorts of mischief at Siberia, consigning his race to third place in Kent-powered cars. Tim Hamilton drove to another Formula Ford 1600 Kent win while Jeremy Mattea shadowed him the whole race to come away with second place. Kyle Evans continued his outright dominance in the Duratec Spectrum once again demonstrating the quality of his For Sale car to any interested onlookers.

---------- Race 4 ----------

Feature race Number 4 was all victory for Tim Hamilton and the TYREPLUS Burleigh Heads Spectrum 010b. Kyle Evans was a non-starter with a slowly degrading clutch actuation issue not holding on for one more standing start from the Pre-Grid area.

At half race distance Jeremy Mattea had made his way to the lead in the Mattea Motorsport Spectrum 05c but ended the race in second, while AJ Gealy from Gealy Motorsport came home third in his debut Formula Ford race meeting in the Greg Fahey Motorsport Van Diemen RF04K.

---------- The Wrap ----------

Tim Hamilton struck the first blow of the new season. Meanwhile Jeremy Mattea leaves the round and the championship in second and AJ Gealy in third, with both looking forward to the battles continuing at Queensland Raceway in April.

Race Report by Tony Chapman


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