The country’s premier grassroots motorsport event FlatOut Race Series (FORS) started its 2018 season with a bang. It tallied 109 entries that saw both familiar faces and first time racers participate during the race weekend at Clark International Speedway (CIS).
Rafael la O’ put the pedal to the metal in his GT Radial SX2-equipped #1 Honda Civic EK to claim first place in both Bracket R and A, as well as break his own record with a 2:10.477 lap time. The youngster from Team Nawna Racing Gabby Sohu bagged second fastest time with 2:11.420 while reigning champion Eduardo Suiza managed to get third in a borrowed W-Autosport / Staging Lanes Honda Civic EG.
In Bracket B, Andrew De Asis in his Blanche Racing Honda Civic (and its newly built engine) take the top spot by almost a full second. Raffy Sohu, the younger brother of Gabby, claimed second, while Motorsport Development Program (MSDP) graduate, Paolo Santos, ended with third.
Meanwhile, Blanche Racing driver Christopher Pimentel won first place in Bracket C. Taking second place was Ton Ramos in his Forcedspeed Honda Civic as third place went to Polo Bautista.
It was a close finish down in Bracket D as the top three were separated by just .0524 seconds. Cebu Racing Group’s Julian Paul Neri drove the fastest for the bracket. Neri was followed by his teammate Jojo Lloren and Carlos Manzo in second and third, respectively. Avin Villaseñor, Paul Ongcuangco, and Darrel Ceña took the top three in Bracket E.
Bracket F saw a good performance from first timer Mark Anton David in his Toyota Yaris to bag top spot. Raymond Ryan Cudala bagged second as Peter Amiel Del Mundo finished the session in third. Gilbert Orpilla, who hails from Baguio, set the fastest time amongst 18 other drivers in Bracket G.
Rafael la O’ dominated the 18-car field, which is composed of Grid A, B, and C. la O’ had a comfortable 13.681 second lead to finish ahead of Eduardo Suiza in second and Gabby Sohu in third.
It was a tighter battle down the field as four cars were nose-to-tail throughout the nine-lap race for Grid B. Paolo Santos managed to squeeze out the win with a .205 second gap to Andrew De Asis who had to settle for second as Jun Cabrera ended up with a respectable third. Grid C saw Francis Roger Telan, Tonton Ramos, and Paul Santos complete the podium spots in this order.
Meanwhile, Grid D had its own wheel-to-wheel action as Bernard Michael Santos, Carlos Marzo, and Andre Makkina Tan barged their way through the rest of the field fighting for the lead. Tan managed to cross the finish line first, followed by Marzo in second, and Santos in third.
Felix Chua initially won in Grid E but post-race inspection showed that he broke out of the bracket time and was penalized. The new top three for Grid E were composed of Jeremy Jimenez, Peter Amiel Del Mundo, and Mars Ocampo.
The next round for FORS will happen on April 7, 2018 at CIS. Drop by and watch it for free or be one of the racers by inquiring at the event’s official Facebook page.
The 2018 Flat Out Race Series (FORS) is sponsored by KYB – New SR Special, RECARO, SmartFuels, Staunch Performance x DynoJet, Carporn Racing, Hazardboy Performance, Seiken Japan, Tes Advertising, and Tuason Racing School. It's supported by 2ndGen Insurance, Aeromed, Driftmob, Pro Simulation Karera (PSK), and Walter Lights and Sounds.