Asher JohnstonYoung South Australian racing talent Asher Johnston has indicated that he will be one of the drivers to watch in the remaining rounds of the 2006 Victorian State Formula Ford 1600 championship following a competitive outing at the Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit last weekend.

19-year-old Johnston, who hails from the Adelaide suburb of Glenelg, posted increasingly strong results throughout the three races held in freezing cold conditions at the famous Victorian circuit – scoring his first top five race and round result in the process.

The results came in just the third race meeting for Johnston and his Asher Johnston Racing / G-Force Mygale SJ04, following a strong opening round at Sandown and a subsequent outing at Mallala three weeks ago.

Heavy fog delayed the start of Saturday’s sole Qualifying session – Asher logging 13th fastest time before a red flag ended the session leaving the #18 car unable to complete a clear lap on the damp circuit

Safe in the knowledge that both car and driver were capable of more, Johnston made a strong start to the opening 6-lap race by moving into 8th by lap three, before oil was laid down on the circuit at the high-speed Siberia corner.

After being caught up in a five-car off track excursion at the corner, Johnston recovered to finish the race 10th and score more valuable championship points and setting the second fastest lap of the event.

A quick five lap sprint was the order for race two, Johnston part of a frenetic four car battle for fourth place.

Incidentally, Johnston gained four positions throughout the race, scoring a sixth-place result in a hard fought performance.

The final race witnessed another storming drive from Johnston, who dropped to 12th following an off at Phillip Island’s notorious hairpin.

He made a quick recovery, however, cutting his way back into the top six by lap 7 (of 10) and into fifth on the final lap. After closing behind Rising Star driver Jake Williams coming onto the straight, Johnston missed out on fourth place by a scant .02s as the pair went side by side to the line.

The strong race results of 10th, sixth and fifth in the three races respectively placed Johnston fourth for the round – his best overall round result in his Formula Ford career.

“The car was awesome all weekend, and Phillip Island is awesome in these cars!” enthused Johnston following his strong performances at the 4.45km circuit.

“We had some small braking problems on Friday but aside from that we barely touched the car – and when we did it wasn’t major.

“I’m really glad to get the result that I think we deserve. It’s good to get the championship points to get our championship back on track. There is obviously more to be found to run at the very front but we’ve already come a long way from where we were at Sandown.

“I need to thank Greg, Jeff and the G-Force Mygale team, Dad and Frank for all their hard work and all of my great sponsors.” He added.

The next round of the Victorian State Formula Ford 1600 championship will be held at Sandown Raceway on July 22 – 23.

Asher Johnston Racing is supported by G-Force Racing, Duplex IT, Richards Auto, Cartek Sales and Service, Check It out Graphics and Race Torque Media.

For more information about Asher please visit www.asherjohnston.com.au