Manfeild TRS: Leitch wins, Norris crowned champion

Local driver Brendon Leitch gave his Victory Motor Racing team its first win of the 2016 Toyota Racing Series campaign in Race 2 at Manfeild, while Lando Norris wrapped up the category title in advance.

Manfeild TRS: Leitch wins, Norris crowned champion
Brendon Leitch
Lando Norris
Brendon Leitch
Antoni Ptak
Jehan Daruvala

The Briton needed a ninth-place finish or better to secure the crown with a race to spare and had little trouble delivering the necessary result.

In doing so, he became the first European champion in the series' 12-season history, succeeding Williams development driver Lance Stroll, who had likewise clinched his crown with a race to go last year.

The race itself, meanwhile, went down to a battle between Leitch and Jehan Daruvala, the former going from fourth on the grid to the lead on the first lap and the Indian then establishing himself as Leitch's main chaser.

Force India protege Daruvala was two seconds off the lead when he passed reverse-grid poleman Antoni Ptak for P2 and while he would eventually reel in Leitch and run just five tenths off, the Kiwi stood his ground and took the win.

Ptak, who has recently signed up for a second season of Euroformula Open, rounded out the podium, with Norris fourth ahead of the Kiwi duo Taylor Cockerton and James Munro.

Ferdinand Habsburg took seventh, with Pedro Piquet and Guan Yu Zhou recovering to eighth and 10th after their Race 1 retirements and Devlin DeFrancesco ending up between the pair.

The final race of the campaign - the mammoth 35-lap New Zealand Grand Prix - will see Norris line up on pole.

Pos. Driver Team Time/Delay
1 Brendon Leitch Victory 16:51.966
2 Jehan Daruvala M2 0.978
3 Antoni Ptak Giles 2.154
4 Lando Norris M2 2.512
5 Taylor Cockerton ETEC 2.993
6 James Munro Giles 4.147
7 Ferdinand Habsburg Giles 5.75
8 Pedro Piquet M2 6.064
9 Devlin DeFrancesco Giles 6.613
10 Guan Yu Zhou M2 7.865
11 Bruno Baptista Victory 9.836
12 Artem Markelov M2 11.040
13 Timothe Buret ETEC 13.187
14 Kami Laliberte M2 13.580
15 Nicolas Dapero Giles 14.083
16 Rodrigo Baptista ETEC 15.700
17 Will Owen Giles 16.450
18 Theo Bean ETEC 17.092
19 Julian Hanses Victory 18.449
20 Thomas Randle Victory 19.788
Manfeild TRS: Habsburg wins, Norris on the brink of title

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