James cole wraps up 2009 Formula Ford title

Merseyside driver James Cole (21) secured the 2009 MSA Formula Ford Champion title at the final round of the Championship, held at Castle Combe, Wiltshire on Saturday. The Jamun Racing driver had dominated from the start, leading the standings since the opening round at Oulton Park, and taking seven wins and a further eight podiums during the course of the season. Cole scored 597 points during the year to beat his main title rival, American driver, Josef Newgarden.Cole provisionally clinched the Formula Ford title two weeks ago at the penultimate round at Brands Hatch, following the disqualification of Newgarden on a technical irregularity. However, with the results from Brands Hatch still pending appeal, Cole had to secure fourth or above in the opening race at Castle Combe to guarantee the title. A sensible drive in race one at Castle Combe saw Cole finish just shy of the podium to a solid fourth place, just the result he required. Cole crossed the line and could eventually celebrate being the 2009 Formula Ford Driver’s Champion. Ironically, in the final race of the season, the second and final race of the season at the Castle Combe circuit, Cole took ninth place, his only finish outside of the top six all season. Cole concluded, “It’s been a fantastic season for me this year, I’ve really enjoyed the racing and I feel I it has been the making of me as a driver. Formula Ford is a great series to develop key racing skills and is the perfect foundation for a young driver. It certainly hasn’t been easy this season, as I’ve had some tough races but it has been character building and this experience will hopefully benefit me in the future. “After my first season of Formula Ford last year, I had laid the foundations for this year and my only goal was to take the title. I knew the car, the team and the circuits, which was definitely an advantage for me. To take the pole and win at Oulton Park at the start of the year set us up perfectly for the championship. However, leading the championship right from the start meant that I was always having to look over my shoulder as well as staying focused. I think it is easier to chase rather than be chased in this championship, but thankfully I was able to keep my rivals at bay all season.”“I’m really proud to be a Formula Ford Champion, especially when you look at the careers of some of the past champions. I could potentially look to a future in sportscars or head up the path towards Formula 1, so it’s a fantastic stepping stone as a junior formula. I don’t think my achievement has really sunk in yet, but I’m relieved that the title is finally mine and was settled on the track.”

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