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Burdett wins after Cunningham penalised

 

An allegedly jumped start cost Mitch Cunningham victory in the second Toyota Racing Series race at the A1GP race meeting at Taupo.

Mitch Cunningham fended off a strong first-corner challenge from fast-starting British driver Will Stevens to take the lead – and eventually cross the line first – in the second Toyota Racing Series (TRS) race at the A1GP meeting at Taupo today.

Stevens had ranged alongside the pole-starting Kiwi on the run down to Turn 1, but Cunningham hugged the inside line, turning in tight and early and forcing Stevens to run wider on the exit.

From then on Cunningham, who won race one with a last-lap passing move, was in command.

But it was all for nought. The racing judge of fact ruled that both Cunningham and Stevens had jumped the start and slapped them with a five-second penalty. Judge of fact decisions can't be appealed.

That gave the win to Michael Burdett with Sam MacNeill second with Cunningham and Stevens third and fourth.

NZ V8s champion, John McIntyre, in his first race meeting in a top-level open-wheeler, turned in an excellent performance.

At one point in the race he was faster than the drivers running in the top order and gradually cut into the margin between his car and ex-Formula Ford ace, John Whelan’s.

At the chequer, eighth-placed McIntyre was only two-tenths of a second behind Whelan after making determined efforts to pass.


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