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WEST AUSTRALIAN ANTHONY MARTIN faces perhaps the biggest challenge of his brilliant career in this weekend’s US Pro Mazda Championship. The 22-year-old from Kalgoorlie currently leads the prestigious Road-to-Indy event by four points going into Round 10 at Gateway Motorsports Park, Illinois on August 26.
Anthony dominated last up at Mid-Ohio, winning both the first and third race of the triple-header, giving him a narrow lead for the USD$790,000 Mazda Scholarship. But it’s been a tough battle throughout the season for the Cape Motorsports driver and his main rival, Brazilian Victor Franzoni.
Getting put out at Mid-Ohio by Victor’s teammate “was not the way I wanted it to happen,” Anthony said. “It’s bad when lapped cars affect a championship. But pressure motivates me to do better and I think being on top makes me go faster, so I’m confident going forward. I was a little ticked off, but I had to put what happened out of my mind — racing is racing and those things happen.”n
The pair had an anxious wait for official results when, under the direction of championship officials, their cars and that of third-placed American TJ Fischer were impounded for further evaluation. They were subsequently cleared. The series winds up September 1-3 with Rounds 11 and 12 at the famous 5.23km, 11-turn Watkins Glen International circuit, in New York State.
Anthony will be well supported there with Mum Lee-Anne, Dad Mike, older sister Caroline and younger brother Patrick, all heading to the US, for the finale. “It’ll be a family affair for sure,” said a proud Lee-Anne Martin. ”Anthony’s Granny is going too – she’s is on holidays in the USA on the West Coast and is going over to WG for his races – so fingers and toes, and everything else, crossed!”
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