Anthony Martin Sweeps Pro Mazda debut

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It was a perfect opening to the 2017 Pro Mazda Championship for young Australian Anthony Martin and his #8 Mazda/Burgess BLA-Cape Motorsports team.

The 22 year old West Australian claimed both poles and both race wins in clean sweep of the opening weekend at the Allied Building Products Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

The Western Australian is fresh from his 2016 Coopers Tires USF2000 Championship and could not have wanted a better start to his next stage on the road to Indy pathway.

His second race win of the weekend came on the back of a race long battle with the driver he beat to the USF2000 title Victor Franzoni. However after building a near 2 second lead, Martin was bought back to the pack by a mid race yellow.

After the restart Martin was able to again pull away from his rival and rebuilt a lead of almost a second by the time the chequered flag was shown.

With the added bonus of posting the fastest lap of the race, Martin also collected an extra championship point.

As you would expect Martin was delighted after the event

“I’m so happy to take the sweep at St. Pete and to come away from here with the championship lead. To have Mazda backing and be driving the Soul Red colors seems to have pushed me harder than ever before.

“With the scholarship, there’s a lot of pressure, but I thrive on pressure and that’s one reason we’ve done so well this weekend. This race was 40 minutes which was much longer than yesterday’s race, so once I was able to get a gap I just drove to a lap time and kept it consistent.

“Just when I was starting to push harder to widen the gap, the safety car came out. It may have looked easy, but it was hard. As a race car driver, you want to drive hard all the time, so to hold yourself back is very difficult.”