- 04 June 2016
Alton, VA - In a battle to the checkered flag at VIR, it was Neil Verhagen in the K-Hill Motorsports Mygale taking the victory by just .042 seconds over Team Pelfrey's Phillippe Denes in round seven of the 2016 F1600 Formula F Championship Series season. Steve Bamford won the Masters Class, finishing third overall. Weather conditions were in the 90s on a hot day in Virginia.
"I knew it was me and him at the end of the race. The last lap went really well, we got back by him," said Verhage. It was his second win of the 2016 season.
Verhagen's win was notable, as he found himself 2.6 seconds back from Denes mid-race. Denes took the mid-race lead after a scuffle left race leader and pole sitter Trenton Estep on the sidelines and involved Road Atlanta winner Peter Portante. The opening part of the F1600 round saw a eight-car train battle for the lead.
"I had a good lead after Trenton and Peter (Portante) got together and saw Neil coming. I knew we had to work together to get away," said Denes, who won two of three races at Watkins Glen last month.
Another big time battle saw Bamford take the final podium spot after a multi-lap scrap for third among four cars, with Calvin Ming finishing fourth, Portante fifth and new-comer Kaylen Frederick in sixth. Those cars would go at it aggressively, with no shortage of three-wide racing going on down the long front-straight at VIR.
"It was a tough race, there were a few of us battling back there battling back and forth," said Bamford.
Two more races, rounds eight and nine of the 2016 season, follow on Sunday from VIR.
Full results are available on www.F1600Series.com, www.F2000Series.com, and www.AtlanticChampionshipSeries.com. The weekend continues on Sunday with two F1600 races and single races for both F2000 and Atlantic.