FB Motorsport, Performance Racing take top honours at the Indian National Car Racing Championship
Jeet Jhabakh (5) on his way to winning race 2 in ITC classAnand Philar

FB Motorsport, Performance Racing take top honours at the Indian National Car Racing Championship

Keith D’Souza and Jeet Jhabakh notched wins in the Touring Car races, Chetan Korada and Chandresh Tolia shared honours in Saloon Car series while Raghul Rangasamy did a clean sweep in the Super Stock class

FB Motorsport stamped its authority on the second round of the MRF MMSC FMSCI Indian National Car Racing Championship held at the MMRT, with Hyderabad’s Jeet Jhabakh and Goa’s Keith D’Souza, both driving the Volkswagen Polo, bagging the win in the two premier Indian Touring Cars races.

Keith D'Souza, winner, race 3, ITC class, flanked by second-placed Arjun Balu (left) and third-placed Jeet  Jhabakh
Keith D'Souza, winner, race 3, ITC class, flanked by second-placed Arjun Balu (left) and third-placed Jeet JhabakhAnand Philar

In the Super Stock category, Mamallapuram’s Raghul Rangasamy (Performance Racing) won both the races. That said, the Race Concepts’ team weren’t far behind, with Alisha Abdullah and Vineet Abhiram taking P2 and P3 in race 2, while Rithvik Thomas took P2 in the next race, relegating Abdullah to P3.

Raghul Rangasamy, winner, race 2, Super Stock class, flanked by second-placed Alisha Abdullah (left) and third-placed Vineet Abhiram
Raghul Rangasamy, winner, race 2, Super Stock class, flanked by second-placed Alisha Abdullah (left) and third-placed Vineet AbhiramAnand Philar

Bengaluru lad Tijil Rao (Momentum Motorsport) won his second race thus far in the Formula LGB class, adding his race victory in round 2 to the win he had notched in round 1. Hot on his heels was Viswas Vijayaraj (DTS Racing) who bagged the win in the second race. In the MRF Saloon Car series (Toyota Etios), it was Chennai’s Chetan Korada and Mumbai’s Chandresh Tolia winning a race each.

Jhabakh, a 28-year-old automotive businessman from Hyderabad and former Volkswagen Ameo and Vento Cup champion, enjoyed a trouble-free run once race leader Arjun Balu (Race Concepts) dropped out of contention with a gearbox issue. Jhabakh managed to nose ahead of teammate Dhruv Mohite following a brief contact, gradually extending the lead for a comfortable win, his first of the season, having missed the opening round in February. Mohite came in second while Balu was a distant third.

“It was a good race for me after I got in front. I’m not sure what happened with Arjun’s (Balu) car, but I passed him and Dhruv to get in front. I am really happy for this win,” said Jhabakh.

Balu started fourth on the reverse grid, but cut through to the front in the very first lap and was poised for another win when his gearbox acted up. “In the third lap, I found the car weaving on the straight and I realised something was wrong. So, I let the others pass me and in the final three laps, shifted to fifth gear and stayed there as I wanted to finish and pick up points,” said Balu.

The Race Concepts team then got to work and changed the gearbox in a little over 30 minutes, attracting a five-position grid penalty for Balu for the next race for which the Coimbatore ace qualified at pole position. Consequently, Keith D’Souza put in his best, his strong start helping him to ultimately win the race, albeit against an equally determined Balu who made three places, with Jhabakh rounding off the podium.

The provisional results of the weekend are as follows:

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