Clean Sweep for Kalgoorlie Kid Anthony Martin in Florida. Images: PRO MAZDA CHAMPIONSHIP.
The spoils of victory. Image: PRO MAZDA Championship.
ANTHONY MARTIN has gifted his rivals a veritable masterclass around the 14 tricky turns of Florida’s 2.9km street circuit near St Petersburg.
It was a stellar performance in the Pro Mazda Road to Indy opener over the daylight-saving weekend in the US. Anthony absolutely he blitzed the field, leading all 55 laps of the two races after taking pole in both qually sessions. It was a near faultless start to the 2017 season for the 22-year-old. And a huge fillip for his anxious family back in Western Australia, cheering him on at home in XXX in the wee hours of this morning.
“We spoke to him after the race,” said proud Mum Lee-Anne. “He sounded really good, happy, confident with the car, in a good mental space,”
“I actually hit the wall at the exit of Turn Three in Race One,” Anthony said. “A lot of people have hit that wall this weekend and now I get to join that club! It was a crazy race. I also hit at Turn Eight late in the race and took off all the Cooper Tire signs,So sorry for that!
“But I’m so happy to be on the podium in St. Pete – I’ve raced here for three years and Race One was my first podium. It’s great to put the Soul Red car on top for the weekend.”
The Soul Red #8 Mazda/Burgess BLA-Cape Motorsports rig. Image: PRO MAZDA Championship.
Driving for St. Petersburg-based Cape Motorsports, Anthony remained under pressure throughout both races from Brazilian Victor Franzoni (Juncos Racing), before taking the checkered flag to earn victory. Californian TJ Fischer finished third in each for Team Pelfrey.
” It may have looked easy but I was certainly challenged in the car,” Anthony said. “I try to look forward as much as I can and not worry about what’s going on behind me and I was able to do that during the weekend. Victor was right there. But the Cape Motorsports guys gave me a great car.”
Anthony is well on his way to joining Matthew Brabham as the only driver to claim back-to-back Mazda Scholarships- in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda and the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires -with flag-to-flag victories in the Hi-Tide Kids on Track Grand Prix Saturday, and Sunday’s Allied Building Products Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
He also claimed the Staubli Award, with the PFC Award going to the winning team, Cape Motorsports.
Winners are grinners! Image: PRO MAZDA Championship.
PRO MAZDA features a condensed, six-weekend schedule of 12 races to allow teams to dovetail their racing commitments with a US-summer testing development program of the new PM-18 chassis.
|1/2||March 11/12||Streets of St. Petersburg||2.9km street course*|
|3/4||May 12/13||Indianapolis Motor Speedway||3.93km road course|
|5/6||June 24/25||Road America||6.51km road course*|
|7/8||July 29/30||Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course||3.63km road course*|
|9||August 25/26||Gateway Motorsports Park||2.01km oval|
|10/11/12||September 2/3||Watkins Glen International||5.41km road course**|
*Doubleheader Round **Tripleheader Round