Ben Barker: ‘Win or Lose, I’ll give it my all’
21/10/2010 at 2:36pm

 
Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship leader Ben Barker says win or lose, he will have given ‘his all’ in this weekends’ title fight with Mitch Evans and Tom Tweedie.

Barker, who leads Evans by eight points and Tweedie by twelve, is the form driver in the championship at present having won the last three consecutive rounds.

After a rough start to the season when he finished off the podium at Wakefield Park’s first round, he bounced back with second place at both Symmons Plains and Phillip Island before going on a winning streak that continued through the most recent round at Eastern Creek.

Barker, who’s UK home is near Cambridge in Suffolk, said he feels no pressure leading the championship ahead of the final round.

“I feel good, confident,” he said today.

“The last three rounds have gone our way and worked well for us in that it’s propelled us to the lead of the championship, but with twelve points covering three of us it really doesn’t mean a huge amount.

“I’m not thinking a lot about what has been. I’m thinking about what we can do this weekend.

“I think the only advantage we have is a small buffer and the fact that momentum is on our side.”

Barker will be match fit at the Melbourne circuit, having recently made his V8 Supercar debut at Mount Panorama, Bathurst. Barker, driving a MW Racing Ford, charged from 15th to 7th in the second race and impressed his team boss and many of those who saw his Touring Car debut.

The 19-year-old should however adapt quickly back into the Formula 3 groove, having spent most of his year hopping in and out of different cars thanks to his day job as a driver trainer in Sydney.

“The best thing is I’m comfortable in the car this year. It’s all gelled and the moment I get in I feel at home and that’s the best thing you can have to feel comfortable,” Barker said.

“Because I’m comfortable in the car and with the way it’s driving lately I can concentrate on learning the track quickly on Friday and getting on the money as quickly as possible.”

Despite Barker and Team BRM team-mate Mitch Evans sharing first and second in the championship race ahead of the final round, Barker sees no issues having his closest rival parked right next to him in the garage.

“Mitch and I get along well, we’re mates and there won’t be anything drastic between us this weekend,” he explained.

“We push each other hard and have been so evenly matched this season. He’s been a touch quicker in qualifying and I’ve strung the last couple of feature races together so there’s nothing in it.

“In the end, the best man will win. Win or lose, as long as I come out of the weekend knowing that I have given it my all I will be pretty satisfied.”

Should Barker (or team mate Mitch Evans) win the title this weekend it will deliver Team BRM a record third title in a row, their sixth overall and the teams’ fourth Gold Star / Australian Drivers Championship.

The result would put the Adelaide-team second only to the renowned Birrana Racing as the most successful operations in the Australian Drivers’ Championship’s past 25 years.

The finale of the F3 Australian Drivers Championship will be held with the Shannons Nationals this weekend, October 23-24, at Sandown Raceway in Melbourne.

BEN BARKER VITALS:
#5 Cars International Team BRM Dallara F307 – Mercedes Benz
Currently 1st, 202 points

AGE: 19
RESIDES: Sydney (From Suffolk, UK)
F3 ROUND STARTS: 6
F3 RACE STARTS: 18
F3 RACE WINS: 6
F3 RACE PODIUMS: 12
POLE POSITIONS: 1
F3 HISTORY:
2010 Team BRM Driver. Won Rds 4, 5 and 5, Mallala, Morgan Park and Eastern Creek.
1 Pole Position, Tasmanian F3 SuperPrix

RACING HISTORY:
2010 – V8 Development Series debut at Bathurst, MW Racing, 7th
2010 – Australian Formula Ford, Townsville, Team BRM
2009 – British Formula Ford, 4th in Formula Ford Festival
Prior – Karting.

F3 Australian Drivers Championship Points after 6 of 7 rounds

Ben Barker (Team BRM Dallara F307 – Mercedes Benz) 202
Mitch Evans (Team BRM Dallara F307 – Mercedes Benz) 194
Tom Tweedie (Team Tom Supporters Club Dallara F304 – Renault) 190
Zhang Shan Qi (Team BRM with PTRS Dallara F307 – Mercedes Benz) 91
Chris Gilmour (All Properties Group Dallara F307 – Mercedes Benz) 74
 
 
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