Dhruv Mohite Crowned 2018 Volkswagen Ameo Cup Champion

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  • Oct 8, 2018
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Kolhapur-based driver gets a ticket to MRF Formula 1600 Challenge

The  2018 Volkswagen Ameo Cup drew to a close at the Buddh International Circuit this weekend (6-7 October). As expected, the last round of the season proved to be as exciting as the the rest of it, with Dhruv Mohite clinching the title, followed by Saurav Bandyopadhyay and Jeet Jabhak. Shubomoy Ball took home the title in Ameo Cup Junior Category.

The first race of the day was quite a chaotic one, seeing guest driver Dhruv Behl clinch the top step of the podium as pole-sitter Pratik Sonawane and Dhruv Mohite battled it out for the lead in the first set of corners. However, Pratik, who set a blistering lap time the day earlier, and Mohite clashed while heading into turn 5, allowing Behl to take the lead. But while Pratik was able to recover from the incident quickly, Mohite dropped down to 16th.

As Mohite tried find his way through a pack of cars to lose as few points as possible to clinch the title, the race was red-flagged after Arefeen Raafi Ahmed flipped his car at the final corner. At the restart, Behl made sure he had a good lead over Pratik, while the other title contender, Saurav Bandyopadhyay, who was still recovering from dengue, found himself in third spot. Sadly, race officials were forced to wave yellow flags yet again as another driver ran wide into the gravel at turn 3. This meant the drivers crossed the line under yellow flags, making Behl the winner of Race 1. Behind him were Sonawane and Bandyopadhyay followed by Affan Sadat and Siddharth Mehdiratta. Anmol Singh and Jeet Jhabakh, both junior category winners from previous seasons, finished sixth and seventh, respectively. After race officials tallied up the timing charts, however, Mohite, who finished 11th in the race, was classified seventh, while Jeet was demoted to eighth. This meant that the two would start from the front row in the reverse grid Race 2.

Having two of the fastest drivers from the 2018 season on front row meant all who had gathered had something to look forward to. And both Dhruv and Jeet didn’t disappoint. Both got off to a clean start and were soon battling for the lead, with Mohite running just 0.298 seconds behind after the first lap. Sadly, their battle was put on hold after an early safety car was deployed to retrieve the cars of Akshay Bhivshet and Tauhid Anwar. While Dhruv could have lunged ahead of Jeet at the restart, he preferred not to considering the lead he had in the championship. Meanwhile, Anmol Singh and Affan Sadat kept battling for third, with the two trading places twice in two laps. However, Anmol was able to keep his cool and took the final podium spot on the very last lap of the race. Saurav Bandyopadhyay finished fifth while Pratik Sonawane was forced to retire after suffering from a flat tyre.

Dhruv Mohite’s championship win has earned him a ticket to the 2019 MRF Formula 1600 Challenge. We wish him all the best in India’s premier single-seater open wheel championship and look forward to seeing him on the podium next year.

As for Volkswagen’s racing series held in association with Madras Motor Sports Club (MMSC), the carmaker has confirmed that it will continue to use the Ameo for next season. However, the car will be subjected to a few mechanical changes and rigorous testing in the coming months, more details of which will be revealed shortly.

Recommended Variant : Ameo 1.5 TDI Comfortline

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