Dublin, Ireland - Tuesday 3rd June 2014: The Northern Ireland Formula Ford 1600 championship got back underway at Kirkistown for rounds five and six. Coming into the weekend, current championship leader Niall Murray was keen to extend his margin at the top of the point’s table.
Qualifying got underway and as ever at the County Down venue, the times were very close. Niall was piped to pole position by a margin of 0.018 seconds having been unable to pick up a slipstream from another car. However with two front row starts for the day, Murray was feeling confident going into the afternoon’s races.
A good start in race one put Niall slightly in front of pole man Noel Dunne on the run to the first corner, but missing a gear however meant he was forced to slip in behind Dunne rounding Colonial. Murray managed to hold second place for the majority of the first lap before Pollock made a move down the inside at the hairpin. Niall fought to hold on around the outside of Pollock but the pair clashed wheels leaving the corner, dropping Murray to sixth. Quickly he set about making up the lost ground passing Morgan Dempsey on the next lap followed by Sean Doyle, Adrian Pollock and Jake Byrne on the lap after. Now back into second place, Niall went about chasing down leader Dunne who was 2.3 seconds ahead. Closing at just under 0.1 of a second per lap, Murray managed to close the gap to just 0.3 seconds at the flag but unfortunately ran out of time to challenge for the win.
The second race of the day started quite similarly to race one with Murray and Dunne heading towards the first corner side by side. Pollock found a way past the Irish Sports Council supported driver entering colonial but it wasn’t long before Niall was back in second and chasing down race leader. A mistake from Dunne allowed Murray into the lead but keen to take the place back, Noel managed to pull off a nice cutback at the Hairpin to move back into the lead to the flag.
Niall Murray - #5 Formula Ford:
“I’m delighted to be leaving Kirkistown with another good haul of points. I know I can’t win every race so this has been a really solid weekend. I have kept my run of front row starts going for this season so I’m also very happy about that. Once again the team did a great job and I’m really looking forward to the Formula Ford Festival in Mondello Park next weekend”