Askew Leads F2000 Practice from Mid-Ohio
Lexington, OH - After two 40-minute Friday sessions, Oliver Askew set the fastest time in F2000 Championship Series practice at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Driving the No. 95 entry for Cape Motorsports, Askew rocketed to the top of the time charts with a quick lap of 1:24.244 on his 18th and final flying lap of the 2.25-mile track in the afternoon practice session.
Askew is making his F2000 Championship Series debut this weekend in the No. 95 Van Diemen/Mazda. The 20-year-old driver from Jupiter, Florida, was recently named as the newest Rising Star Racing driver. The group provides funding, marketing support and career guidance to aspiring race drivers. Askew is also a Team USA Scholarship winner, and finished second in the Walter Hayes Trophy Grand Final at Silverstone last season.
Fast times all happened in afternoon practice, as the morning session saw the track drying out after overnight rain and most drivers exploring track limits ahead of a potentially wet Saturday at Mid-Ohio. Of note, Askew was fastest in the morning session, running 10 laps, and bettering second place by some 12 seconds in a lightly subscribed 40-minute session.
Local expert John LaRue was second fastest on the afternoon time sheets, and is coming off two wins at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, sweeping the F2000 weekend there in June.
LaRue also won at Mid-Ohio in a fast-paced two-day weekend for the F2000 Series in May and will be a force at the front of the field in the No. 17 Citation.
Matching LaRue's pace, LTD Motorsports driver Robert Allaer was third quick, .014 seconds off LaRue's quick time. Allaer ran 21 trouble free laps in session as he continues to hunt for his first career F2000 Championship win, coming off a second place run at Indianapolis.
Points leader Brandon Dixon was fourth quick in the No. 5 Citation, ahead of fellow Championship contender Steve Jenks. Jenks, similar to Allaer, is also closing in on his first trip to the top of the podium, having rarely finished outside the top five this season for Tumenas Motorsports.
Kaylen Frederick was sixth fastest in his F2000 Championship debut for Team Pelfrey. Frederick ran in F1600 for the Pelfrey team in 2016, and finished second at Mid-Ohio last July, missing out on the race win by .192 seconds after a last lap battle with eventual Series title winner Neil Verhagen.
Tim Paul was next on the time sheets, in seventh place, and is in his third different car in the last three race weekends. Paul is spending the weekend in the R-Sport Van Diemen, the same car powered Keith McCrone to the fastest lap in the opening practice at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in June.
Reece Everard, who finished second in the season opener at VIR, was 12th quick in the No. 61.
Full results are available on www.F2000Series.com.
F2000 drivers and teams next hit Mid-Ohio for Saturday morning qualifying followed by an early afternoon race, round seven of the 2017 season, marking the midpoint of the Championship. Sunday follows a similar schedule, including round eight of the 14-race F2000 Series season.