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Cressey Bursts Back Into Contention For Title


07-09-02 For immediate release


Young New Zealand racing driver James Cressey has burst back into contention for the 2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship title after a sensational win in the first race at the sixth round of the 2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship at Melbourne's Sandown International Raceway on Saturday afternoon.

The 18-year-old Aucklander - winner of both the New Zealand Formula Ford championship and the Bruce McLaren Scholarship in 2001 - qualified on the front row of the grid and after dicing briefly with pole sitter and championship points leader James Manderson accelerated away to cross the line 12 seconds in front of eventual second place-getter Darren Palmer.

On the way Cressey not only set the fastest lap of the race, he also lowered the existing Formula 3 lap record, leaving it at a scintillating 1.09.4252, faster even than the pole time in each qualifying session.

Speaking as he was ushered towards the podium for the prize-giving ceremony the young Kiwi driver said that the race could hardly have gone better for him.

" I got a good start and I knew fairly early on that I could get past James (Manderson). Will got a better run on me at one stage but that was only because I had to back off when James got a bit sideways."

Power briefly took the lead but Manderson got it back a lap later only to be caught and passed by Cressey and the determined Power.

Power then lost control of his car and spun off the track leaving Manderson in second.

Manderson then had a moment of his own, allowing teammate Darren Palmer, 2001 champion Peter Hackett and former Kart champion Michael Caruso to get through.

The win is Cressey's second this year and elevates him from fourth in the points standings to second.

The lap record is also the second Cressey has set this year. The first was at the first round of the 2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship in Adelaide. There he not only set a new Formula 3 lap record, he also set the fastest lap time so far recorded at the new-look street circuit.



2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship Rnd 6 Sandown International Raceway Melbourne Saturday September 07

Race 1: J. Cressey (Dallara F301) 18.57.1706 1, D. Palmer (Dallara F301) 19.09.7696 2, P. Hackett (Dallara F301) 19.12.7341 3, M. Caruso (Dallara F301) 19.12.9744 4, J. Manderson (Dallara F301) 19.22.7014 5, R.Occhipinti (Dallara F396) 19.44.1772 6. Qualifying (Saturday) Session 1: Manderson 1.09.6320 1, Cressey (NZ) 1.09.6553 2, Power 1.09.6633 3, Hackett 1.10.5262 4, Caruso 1.10.5575 5, Palmer 1.10.6311 6. Session 2: Power 1.14.9543 1, Manderson 1.16.1284 2, Caruso 1.16.5438 3, Hackett 1.17.0260 4, Cressey 1.17.1616 5, R. Occhipinti (Dallara F396) 1.17.3775. Practise (Friday) Session 1: Power 1.10.6194 1, Cressey 1.10.8316 2, Caruso 1.11.0354 3, Manderson 1.11.1362 4, Palmer 1.11.1767 5, Hackett 1.12.3882 6. Session 2: Power 1.09.8027 1, Manderson 1.10.4719 2, Caruso 1.10.6185 3, P.Stephenson (Dallara F396) 1.12.5387 4, Justin Watt (Dallara F301) 1.12.5488 5, Cressey 1.12.7296 6.

Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of James Cressey Motorsport. To find out more about James' 2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship campaign contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or

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