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British teenager wins Timaru TRS opener


William Buller fends off Mitch Cunningjham to win Toyota Racing Series thriller. Michael Burdett sets new lap record.

Northern Irish teenager, William Buller, won his first-ever open-wheeler race when he held out US-based Kiwi, Mitch Cunningham, in a hard fought opening heat of the Toyota Racing Series’ Timaru round yesterday.

Buller (16) started from the outside of the front row of the grid, alongside teammate and fellow Briton, Will Stevens.

Buller won the drag race off the line, but Cunningham was past Stevens before the back straight and kept the pressure on Buller all race. He almost got the lead when Buller missed a gear but recovered to win by half a second.

“He had pulled out of the racing line and looked like he’d missed a gear or hit the rev limiter, so I aimed down the inside but he recovered,” Cunningham said.

“I got so close, I couldn’t believe he managed to hang on to the lead, but once he got out of the corner things settled down and we just stayed in touch until the finish.”

Hamiltonian, Michael Burdett, who finished sixth, set a new TRS lap record of 58.890 seconds.

Australian Nathan Antunes dropped out after running off the track and Chinese Adderley Fong spun but rejoined the race.

Results of Race One: William Butler (Great Britain) 1; Mitch Cunningham (New Zealand) 2; Williams Stevens (GB) 3; Scott Pye (Australia) 4; Sam MacNeill (NZ) 5; Michael Burdett (NZ) 6.

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