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Rediff.com  » Sports » Chandhok has another podium finish

Chandhok has another podium finish

April 21, 2003 18:44 IST

India's Karun Chandhok followed up his first and second placing in rounds I and II at Donington Park a fortnight ago with a strong second and third placing in rounds 3 and 4 of the 2003 British Formula 3 championship at Snetterton, England, on Sunday evening.

A large Easter weekend crowd greeted the teams and drivers as they arrived at the fast 1.9 mile circuit, where average speeds over a lap exceed 175 km/h.

The 19-year old Chandhok, driving for T-Sport in the Scholarship class, arrived with his team on a high as the new championship leaders, but the opening two days of the weekend proved just how hard Formula 3 can be.

Chandhok ended the qualifying sessions with a 4th and 6th position on the grid. The former Asian Formula 2000 and Indian National Racing champion knew that he had to dig deep and perform well to stay in the championship points' race.

At the start, Chandhok's team-mate Steven Kane was stalled, which meant that all behind him were bunched up and the Indian couldn't see the lights so he completely missed the start. There was total carnage all though the race, with cars going off all over the place.

While others around him made mistakes, Chandhok moved steadily ahead and finished the 20-lap race in second place to score his third consecutive podium finish of the season.

Race 2 was always going to be harder work from a lower starting position but the Chennai-born driver fought hard with Justin Sherwood all through the race and finally got through around the outside into the 'Esses' with only two laps to go and finished fourth.

The next two rounds of the championship are at Croft in Yorkshire on May 4.

Race results:

Race 1 - 1. Ernesto Viso 30:38.121s 2. Karun Chandhok + 3.9s 3. Justin Sherwood + 14.4s 4. Steven Kane + 14.5s.

Race 2 - 1. Steven Kane 36:39.545s 2. Ernesto Viso + 3.2s 3. Ivor McCullough + 3.4s 4. Karun Chandhok + 7.8s.

Championship positions - 1. Steven Kane 65 points 2. Karun Chandhok 60 points 3. Justin Sherwood 38 points 4. Ernesto Viso 35 points.

UNI