Pukekohe driver Liam Lawson has regained the Toyota Racing Series lead after picking up two wins and a fourth (in the reverse grid race) on his home track over the weekend.
"The safety car in the feature race wasn't ideal for us," said Lawson. "We had really good pace, and I knew if I kept the car straight, we'd be okay. It was a really nice car to drive [yesterday] and I went flat out for the whole race and managed to break the minute mark during the race."
Lawson bounced out to an early lead from pole, with Brazilian Igor Fraga second. Fraga, who went into the weekend as the Series leader, struck trouble on the opening lap when he was turned around by Switzerland's Gregoire Saucey and rejoined in last a long way behind the field. But a fortuitous safety car on lap three allowed Fraga to get back in touch with the field.
On the restart, Lawson took off again and was never challenged, crossing the line six seconds ahead of Argentinian Franco Colapinto and German Lirim Zendeli. Fraga, meanwhile, was carving his way through the field and was up to eighth when the chequered flag was waved in what was the drive of the weekend.
"I know I was quick but someone turned me at turn four," said Fraga. "I was hoping for a safety car and one did happen. On the restart, I just focused my mind and tried to pass as many cars as I could. I think we did a good job and reduced the damage [loss of points] as much as possible."
Lawson took out the weekend's first race on Saturday in the fourth round of the Toyota Racing Series at Pukekohe Park. Race two, a reverse grid top eight affair on Sunday morning, saw Australian Jackson Walls win his first major international single seater race.