Murray claims FFord title at Croft

Irishman Niall Murray took the Avon Tyres Formula Ford title at Croft with one round to spare, but a botched qualifying and race one disaster made sure that he had to work for it.

Murray said: “I think I misread the conditions a bit at the start, thinking it was a bit wetter than it was.

“I wanted to come in and change the setup but wasn’t going to have time, I should have in hindsight”

The ninth position he found himself in at the start became academic halfway through the first race when riding hard over the curbs caused a pushrod to fail, putting him out on the spot.

Joshua Smith led away from pole on a wet track and was able to pull away from Michael Eastwell who slipped into the clutches of Carter Williams.

Joey Forster, who qualified sixth, adapted to the wet track easily and began to pick off those ahead of him. He slotted into fourth to attack Eastwell, which became third when Carter pulled off with engine failure.

The duo raced into Sunny In on the last lap where Forster was able to slip down the inside and complete the pass for second through Sunny Out.

Smith doubled up with a second win on Sunday in dry but windy conditions.

Forster challenged for the lead in the early running but found himself being jumped by James Clarke. A failed attempt at snatching the lead from Smith saw Clarke settle for second while Forster also succumbed to Eastwell for the final podium slot.

Murray finished the second race in seventh but benefited from the reverse grid draw for the final encounter, which saw him start on the front row.

He managed the perfect start and barrelled into Clervaux with a decent lead after Jack Wolfenden struggled to find any grip, leaving the Dubliner to romp to an easy win – and the title.

Formula Four diver Jordan Dempsey pushed Wolfenden into a mistake to take second ahead of Eastwell whose three podiums see him standing second in the championship with one round to go.