Toyota Racing Series International Championship: Lynn hunting down a top three finish

DUNMOW speedster Alex Lynn remains in the hunt for a top-three championship position in the Toyota Racing Series International Championship in New Zealand following the third – and penultimate – race weekend at the Hampton Downs circuit.

The 17-year-old raced strongly to a pair of fourth-place finishes, but was unfortunate to get involved in a race-ending collision in the third and final race – it was his first non-finish in 28 starts.

Lynn, the reigning Formula Renault UK Winter Cup champion, qualified fifth and improved to fourth in the opening race but found the local experts had the advantage on the tricky circuit.

“I learned it pretty quickly but it took me a while to drive it right,” he said. “It took a bit of adapting and testing was tough, but I got there in the end and in the races I was right there on the pace. I feel that I learned a lot this weekend.”

Alex’s fourth place in race one gave him third on the grid for race two, in which the top six finishers from the opening encounter were reversed.

It turned into a superb race, featuring an energetic scrap with reigning champion (and 2011 points leader) Mitch Evans.

“It was a fantastic race and I went wheel to wheel with Mitch for about 10 laps,” said Lynn. “I was a bit disappointed to come off worst, but you just enjoy those kinds of races anyway.”

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The final race was a short one for Lynn. His Giles Motorsport team-mate Evans, who was leading, had a tricky moment and the chain reaction resulted in Alex running into Nick Cassidy, ironically another of his team-mates.

“We all went into the first hairpin fairly close to each other,” he said. “Mitch locked up and everyone backed themselves up to miss him. I was right on Nick’s gearbox and had nowhere to go – unfortunately my front-right wheel clipped his left-rear and broke the suspension.”

Lynn now has just a few days to wait before the fourth and final weekend of the series at Manfeild and he will be attempting to move up from his current position in fourth place.