Formula 4 Weekend recap | Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

Formula 4 Weekend recap

16.05.22

The Brazilian Formula 4 Championship successfully held its inaugural season launch in Autodromo Velo Cita, Mogi Guaçu.

In British Formula 4 Championship, 3 different winners shone this weekend: Alex Dunne who claimed its third victory of the season, Michael Shin who brilliantly resisted pressure from Ollie Gray to win its first race of the season & Ugo Ugochukwu who triumphed after a wet race thriller.

Historical! In ADAC Formula 4 Championship, Andrea Kimi Antonelli won all three races of the weekend and secure its lead in the drivers’ championship.

Brazilian Formula 4 Championship

The inaugural round of the Brazilian Formula 4 Championship took part in Autodromo Velo Cita, Mogi Guaçu. Seasons’ Promoter is Vicar who’s promoting the Stock Car Pro Series. The season is organized by the Brazilian Automobile Confederation.

16- different drivers and 4 different teams are taking part this season, using the Taatus F4 2nd generation car.

Pedro Clerot won Race 1 & 3; Ricardo Gracia won Race 2

We had 2 different winners for the first 3 races of the season: Pedro Clerot won Race 1 & Race 3 and took a clear lead in the drivers’ Championship, while Ricardo Gracia won Race 2.

Championship standings after 3 races

1st - Pedro Clerot, 62 points
2nd - Ricardo Gracia, 37
3rd - Nicholas Monteiro, 30
4th - Lucas Staico, 24
5th - Felipe Barrichello Bartz, 22
6th - Fernando Barrichello, 22
7th - Nicolas Giaffone, 18
8th - Victor Backes, 13
9th - Lucca Zucchini, 10
10th - Richard Annunziata, 8
11th - Nelson Neto, 8
12th - João Tesser, 6
13th - Luan Lopes, 5
14th - Vinícius Tessaro, 0
15th - Aurelia Nobels, 0
15th - Álvaro Cho, 0

The next stage of F4 Brazil will be played between the 30th and 31st of July, at the Interlagos racetrack.

British Formula 4 Championship

Dunne leads from lights-to-flag in Brands opener

Alex Dunne took a third victory of the season for Hitech GP in the first ROKiT F4 British Championship certified by FIA race of the weekend at Brands Hatch, extending his early lead at the championship summit.

The Irish teenager’s closest challenger, Aiden Neate (Phinsys by Argenti), stalled off the line, giving Dunne a clear run down to Paddock Hill Bend on the opening lap. After ending the first lap with a comfortable 1.3-second lead ahead of Georgi Dimitrov (JHR Developments), Dunne set about extending the gap to an eventual 6.6 seconds at the chequered flag.

A fast-starting Dimitrov would later be penalized with a false start penalty, adding ten seconds to his race time and dropping him back from second on the road to sixth in the adjusted results. The race start remains under post-race investigation, and all results are provisional. That meant his JHR team-mate Joseph Loake inherited second having kept the British-Bulgarian racer honest throughout, with Carlin’s Oliver Gray completing the podium.

Gray dispatched team-mate Ugo Ugochukwu on the opening lap to move into fourth and, despite race-long pressure from the McLaren junior, was able to keep him at arm’s length to stay on the same page as Dunne in the championship fight.

Virtuosi Racing’s Michael Shin put in arguably the drive of the race, moving up from the foot of the top ten on the grid to secure fifth.

Shin resists the pressure to deliver first Virtuosi win

Michael Shin resisted race-long pressure from the Carlin pairing of Ollie Gray and Louis Sharp to claim his and Virtuosi Racing’s first victory in the ROKiT F4 British Championship certified by FIA at Brands Hatch.

Starting from pole on the partially-reversed grid, the South Korean racer made the better getaway of he and fellow front row starter Sharp to lead the field through Paddock Hill Bend, the Kiwi forced to turn his attention to defending from a fast-starting Gray, who cut through from fifth to third off the line, then annexed second on the outside exiting Druids.

From there, the gap ebbed and flowed between the leading trio, but Shin didn’t put a foot wrong and duly took the chequered flag 1.3 seconds clear to register the first victory of his fledgling single-seater career.

Gray will be satisfied with second and closes the gap at the championship summit to 33 points with leader Alex Dunne non-scoring, the Hitech GP driver pulling into the pits with a problem having run seventh in the opening exchanges.

Another of Hitech’s quartet, Eduardo Coseteng, kept a watching brief on the lead battle throughout the contest and took a steady fourth, which became third after a post-race, 5-second time penalty was applied to Sharp.

Ugochukwu takes maiden win in wet-weather thriller

McLaren junior Ugo Ugochukwu triumphed in a wet-weather blockbuster, leading home a Carlin 1-2-3 finish in the final ROKiT F4 British Championship certified by FIA race of the weekend at Brands Hatch.

Heading up the second row, Ugochukwu got off the line well, scything past a slow-starting Alex Dunne (Hitech GP) to run second behind team-mate Oliver Gray in the opening exchanges.

The gap between the pair ebbed and flowed until a mid-race safety car to retrieve Edward Pearson’s stranded Virtuosi Racing challenger at Druids closed the gap back up. Although Gray retained the lead at the restart, a wide moment into Clearways gave Ugochukwu an opportunity, and the American seized it with both hands, moving through on the inside line to take the lead.

From there, he expertly controlled the race in tricky conditions, which ended two minutes prematurely after JHR’s Noah Lisle went off at Clark Curve and got beached in the gravel. That confirmed Ugochukwu’s maiden win, with Gray classified as 5.1 seconds behind.

After a slow getaway, Dunne’s race went from bad to worse after a spin at Clearways whilst running third. That caused the field to scatter, and Louis Sharp was able to pick his way through the eye of the storm to round out the final spot on the podium, a fitting end to a promising debut for the Kiwi rising star.

Dunne dropped to P12 as a result of that incident, but undeterred the Irish talent pushed on and was able to claw his way back into the top five with a damaged front wing, before an off across the grass at Surtees removed the remnants of the wing, and forced him to pit for a new one. He eventually took the flag a lap down in 14th.

That result means his advantage at the championship summit has been reduced, with Gray’s podium moving him to within 15 points of his chief title rival after six rounds. Ugochukwu’s win elevates him to third overall, a further six markers back.

ROKiT British F4 heads next to Thruxton, Hampshire over the weekend of 28-29 May.

ADAC Formula 4 Championship

Andrea Kimi Antonelli celebrates start-finish win at the Hockenheimring

Andrea Kimi Antonelli (Prema Racing) was delighted to secure first place on Saturday in the fourth race of the ADAC Formula 4 at the Hockenheimring. The 15-year-old finished ahead of his team-mate Rafael Camara (BRA). Taylor Barnard (17/GBR) defended his third place during the final lap to record a first podium for his PHM Racing team. “I made a good start and was able to pull away a little. I then had tyre management well under control, which is absolutely crucial on this circuit. I stayed focused throughout the entire race and didn’t make any mistakes,” said Italy’s Antonelli. Two-time Formula 1 world champion Emerson Fittipaldi was there to witness the first appearance of his son, Emerson Fittipaldi jr. (BRA/Van Amersfoort Racing), in the ADAC youth racing series. Luca Badoer, another former Formula 1 driver, was likewise in the stands to support his son, Brando Badoer (ITA/Van Amersfoort Racing), who was also making his debut.

The first race of the weekend, taking place as part of the 24H Series, featured 20 drivers from 14 different countries competing on the 4.574-kilometre circuit. Under a clear blue sky and in temperatures around the 20-degree mark, polesetter Antonelli made a good start and was swiftly able to build up a lead. The championship leader never looked likely to surrender first place and celebrated victory at the end of the 30-minute race. Behind the Mercedes Junior driver, Camara was put under pressure as Barnard managed to pass before the hairpin on lap one. Camara responded in the same sector on lap three and defended second place until the finish. “My start didn’t go according to plan as I was struggling with understeer in turn one. The minor issues then calmed down after that and I am delighted with second place and important points for the championship,” explained the 17-year-old.

Charlie Wurz (17/AUT/Prema Racing) and Barnard delivered a side-by-side battle on the final lap as they battled for the final remaining podium spot. “I deliberately let Camara pull away from me to conserve my tyres a bit. This strategy paid off and I am very happy with my first podium,” said Bernard at the end of the race. Wurz, son of former Formula 1 driver Alex Wurz, crossed the line in fourth place. Martinius Stenshorne (16/NOR/Van Amersfoort Racing) finished the race in fifth position, and was the second-best rookie behind Camara. Jonas Ried (17/Ehingen/PHM Racing) claimed sixth to secure his best result of the season in the ADAC academy of speed. Conrad Laursen (16/DNK/Prema Racing) and Arias Deukmedjian (17/USA/Van Amersfoort Racing) took the chequered flag behind the German driver.

Brando Badoer and Rasmus Joutsimies (19/FIN/Jenzer Motorsport) completed the top ten. This weekend saw the first appearance of 15-year-old Badoer in the ADAC youth racing series, witnessed by his father, former Formula 1 driver Luca Badoer. Emerson Fittipaldi jr. was also able to count on some special support. Two-time Formula 1 world champion Emerson Fittipaldi was in Hockenheim to cheer on his 15-year-old son. Making his debut in the ADAC Formula 4, the Brazilian driver crossed the finishing line in 14th place.

Historic: Hat-trick for Andrea Kimi Antonelli in Hockenheim

Prema driver Andrea Kimi Antonelli wins both races on Sunday. First podium for Marcus Amand of US Racing. Formula 1 flair: Two-time world champion Emerson Fittipaldi visits event.

Perfect weekend for Andrea Kimi Antonelli: The Prema driver took victory in both ADAC Formula 4 races on Sunday. The Italian came through from eighth place on the grid to win an action-packed sixth race of the season at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg. Marcus Amand (FRA) and Taylor Barnard (GBR/PHM Racing) joined him on the podium after the second race of the day. Rafael Camara (17/BRA/Prema Racing and Nikita Bedrin (ITA/PHM Racing) had previously completed the podium in the day’s opening race. Antonelli became only the second driver in the history of the junior series to win three races on one weekend. “I am overjoyed with both victories. It is unbelievable that I still managed to win despite the reverse grid rule, but I never gave up. This weekend has given me even more confidence,” said the Mercedes Junior.

Sunday’s first race at the 4.574-kilometre circuit took place in sunshine and temperatures around 15 degrees Celsius, and Antonelli benefitted from his pole position. Behind the pole-sitter, Camara and Barnard battled it out for second place. 17-year-old Barnard initially passed the Prema driver on the opening lap, but Camara was able to bounce back one lap later. Meanwhile, Mercedes Junior Antonelli set about consistently increasing his lead and went on to take his fourth win of the season in the ADAC’s high-speed school. Camara was followed over the finish line in second place by his team-mate Camara. Barnard eventually had to settle for fourth place, having lost out to his team-mate Bedrin. The 16-year-old was closing on Barnard all the time, and pulled off the decisive overtaking manoeuvre on lap 14. This earned him his first podium of the season. Barnard and Martinius Stenshorne (16/NOR/Van Amersfoort Racing) completed the top five.

For race six of the season, the top eight from Sunday morning’s race lined up in reverse order. Conrad Laursen (16/DNK/Prema Racing) started from pole position, while Marcus Amand started the 30-minute race alongside him on the front row. By this point in the day, the temperature in the Schwetzinger Hardt woodland had climbed to 25 degrees Celsius under a clear sky. Amand made a good start and took the lead in the run-up to turn one. The 16-year-old managed to open a gap in the early stages, but the appearance of the safety car on lap five saw the field bunch back together. When racing resumed two laps later, the US Racing driver defended his position, while Antonelli continued his march towards the front. The decisive manoeuvre came on lap ten, when Antonelli overtook Amand to make it a hat-trick, having also won the Saturday race. Only Dennis Hauger (NOR) had achieved this feat before him, in Hockenheim in 2009. “The start went great for me and I was able to pull clear of the second-placed car. However, the safety car did not help me and I was then unable to go with Antonelli. Despite this, I am pleased with my first podium,” said Amand.

Barnard ended the race in third place. This was his second podium at the former Formula 1 circuit. “The whole weekend went well for me, and I am very pleased with the results. I have been able to make some good progress. Let’s hope that continues in the coming races,” said Barnard. Camara came home fourth as the best-placed rookie, followed by Jonas Ried (17/Ehingen). The German from PHM Racing was pleased with his best result of the season in ADAC Formula 4. Charlie Wurz (17/AUT/Prema Racing), Martinius Stenshorne (16/NOR/Van Amersfoort Racing), Oleksandr Partyshev (16/UKR/Jenzer Motorsport) and Conrad Laursen (16/DNK/Prema Racing) also finished in the points. Watched on by his father, former Formula 1 driver Luca Badoer, Brando Badoer (15/ITA/Van Amersfoort Racing) finished in the top ten. Emerson Fittipaldi jr. (Van Amersfoort Racing) was cheered on by his father and two-time Formula 1 world champion Emerson Fittipaldi, who was in Hockenheim to watch the racing. The 15-year-old Brazilian crossed the finish line in 12th place.

The third ADAC Formula 4 weekend of the season shares the bill with the ADAC GT Masters from 24th to 26th June in Zandvoort, the Netherlands. The motorsport stars of tomorrow will battle it out for more points at the current Formula 1 circuit. Antonelli heads to races seven to nine of the season as the championship leader with 137 points.