Ishaan Dodhiwala scored two wins out of the three races held in the third round of the Volkswagen Motorsport India Vento Cup at the Madras Motor Race Track (MMRT) at Sriperumbudur, near Chennai on Saturday and Sunday. The wins allowed Dodhiwala to extend his championship lead over rival Karminder Pal Singh, who won the opening race of the weekend on Saturday.
Also in the mix as a guest driver was autoX editor Dhruv Behl, who scored a sixth, second and fifth place finish over the course of the weekend’s three races. Behl had a chance for victory in Sunday’s first race but ultimately settled for second spot.
Aditya Vijay Pawar took third place in the opening race on Saturday while Niranjan Todkari doubled up on the final step of the podium in both races on Sunday.
Qualifying had suggested close racing as the top four drivers were separated by just 0.33 seconds. It took a less than perfect start by Dodhiwala in the opening race – where he got excessive wheelspin – to allow Singh to get ahead of him where he remained, taking the chequered flag just 1.5 seconds ahead of his rival.
The second race was an incident filled one as the safety car was deployed on the opening lap itself following drivers going off the circuit at the second and third corners of the 3.717km, 12-turn circuit. Racing resumed on lap three with Dodhiwala making his way to the front of the field after having started seventh on account of the reverse grid format and Behl climbing to second from third place on the starting grid.
The third and final race of the day was a far more straightforward one in which Dodhiwala won comfortably from pole position.