Watkins Glen, NY – F1600 Formula F Championship Series points leader Scott Andrews stayed ahead of the pack during practice at Watkins Glen, pacing Friday ahead of a triple-header race weekend. The Exclusive Autosport driver from Australia led the practice one time sheets ahead of Skylar Robinson, Steve Bamford, Jack Mitchell Jr., and Andrew Hobbs.
“It was a big old draft,” said Andrews of his fast lap. “I’ve never been to Watkins Glen before, it’s pretty cool. I am using the bumps to my advantage. Everyone looks fast here.”
Andrews fast time was listed at 2:00.026.
Robinson is joining Austin Mack at K-Hill Motorsports for this weekend’s three races in a blue Mygale/Honda. Robinson won in F2000 at Watkins Glen last year, one of multiple victories in his runner-up Championship effort.
Bamford was third quick on the first session, and is doing F2000 as well this weekend, as he currently leads the F2000 point standings.
Winning the last Series race at Road Atlanta, Mitchell. Jr. hopes to continue his pace this weekend to take control of the point standings from his teammate Andrews.
“We ended up P4 in the first session,” said Mitchell Jr. “We made some changes that made a huge difference with the grip, as there seems to be less overall grip here today than last season.”
Hobbs completed the top five in the first of three yellow Team Pelfrey Mygale/Hondas.
Thomas McGregor was sixth in his Exclusive Autosport entry, making it three Exclusive Spectrums in the top six.
Mack was seventh while Art Foster was eighth and the second overall in Masters Class behind Series veteran Steve Bamford. Both men have one overall F2000 victory, and could be poised to make it two with a strong performance in any of Watkins Glen’s three F1600 races on tap.
Said Foster: “I’m still coming to grips with the new tires, and this was the first time we had practiced on race-worn (2015-spec) tires.”
Will Harvey and Andy Lewis rounded off the top 10 for Chastain Motorsports in their pair of Mygale/Hondas.
Jim Goughary, the only active F1600 Watkins Glen winner in the field, was only 11th fastest for Primus Racing. Mike Scanlan followed in 12th.
Meanwhile, Ben Auriemma was 13th in a new Pelfrey Mygale, followed by Sam Lockwood, Dan Pyanowski, Parker Chase, Gord Ross and Anthony Parker. Robert Megennis did not register a time in the morning session.
The also day included a rain session that produced slower times and less participation as the clouds rolled in above Watkins Glen International. It was enough rain to warrant much slower times and some teams took the opportunity to log miles on Hoosier rain tires.
Full results are available on www.F1600Series.com under the results tab.
Saturday continues with 11:05am qualifying for F1600, with race one at 4:30pm. Sunday’s schedule calls for two more races at 10:55am and 4:25pm.