IN FORMULA BMW WORLD FINAL
British MSA Race Elite Academy driver Ollie Millroy produced a solid performance all weekend at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit in Mexico City, the venue for the 2008 Formula BMW World Final. The grid consisted of some of motorsports most promising young drivers, from no less that fourteen different countries, most of them race winners in one of the three Formula BMW Championships that take place all over the world.
The race format consisted of qualifying on Friday, with the quickest eight going through to a ‘Super Pole’, two heats on Saturday and a third heat and final on Sunday. Racing with Kent based team, Motaworld Racing, the BMW junior development driver drove very solidly all weekend, qualifying in seventh place in both sessions. Three top six finishes in the three heats put Ollie on row three, in fifth position, for the final on Sunday afternoon, just behind Americas champion Alexander Rossi and pole man and European Champion Esteban Gutierrez.
“I was happy with the way things went in qualifying and the heats, my times were quick and it felt good to be up there amongst the guys who have been winning this year,” said Ollie. “We came here knowing it was going to be tough but I knew that because of the amount of karting experience I have had, I am very used to this racing format and like it. I felt strong, the car felt good and without doubt we surprised a few people.”
In Sunday’s final the Claygate teenager once again made his usual perfect start and by lap two had moved himself up to second place. However, not having anyone to tow on the very long straight left him vulnerable for attack from behind and sure enough before the end of the next lap he had dropped back to fourth. With a slight lack of front line speed Ollie succumbed to losing two more places before the flag but finished a respectable sixth.
“On this circuit, with its long straight and high altitude, the race could have gone two ways,” said Ollie. “If I had had someone to work with in the race, it could have been a different story but it didn’t work out like that so there wasn’t a lot more I could do. When I got up to second place I really thought I could get a result but to be honest I think for Motaworld and me to come here, after the year both of us had in the European Championship and perform the way we did, we have to be happy. The top teams prepare a long time for this race and because I have been racing in Asia the Motaworld cars only arrived here a few days before the race. The team have worked hard and done a good job for me these last couple of months and I am happy that we did a good job again this weekend.”
“It’s good to finish my ‘Rookie’ year in cars on a high and now after fourteen races in thirteen different countries, throughout the world, we will sit down with interested people over the next few weeks and decide what the best move would be for me in 2009. It is going to be a big decision and we have to look at all options and make sure we get it right, so next year I can be up at the front from race one”.