BRITISH F4 HISTORY MAKERS HEAD TO OULTON PARK
Oulton Park plays host to arguably the most competitive British F4 entry yet – Photo: Jakob Ebrey
Having thrilled fans a fortnight ago with some of the most memorable races in the championship’s recent history, featuring frenetic battles for position throughout the field, Formula 1’s stars of tomorrow are back! They are set to provide a spectacle to savour as the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost takes to the track at Cheshire’s picturesque Oulton Park this weekend (20/21 May).
Carlin’s Jamie Caroline is in the ascendancy. At Thruxton the championship leader became the first driver to win all three British F4 races in one meeting, taking his victory tally to seven for the season. Caroline’s success has been all the more remarkable given that he has had to produce performances from the very top-drawer, with some of the world’s most talented junior single-seater racers pushing him to the limit.
TRS Arden’s Oscar Piastri sits second in the standings having visited the podium more than any driver with the exception of Caroline, while team-mate Ayrton Simmons is one of only three drivers to win a race this season. The other having been clinched by Double R’s Linus Lundqvist who broke the lap record at Thruxton. All have consistently shown front-running pace going toe-to-toe with Caroline and they will seek to make inroads on his advantage at the top of the table.
Oliver York (Fortec Motorsports) has emerged as a leading player, heading the Ford F4 Challenge Cup standings and battling for overall race victory after claiming a maiden pole at Thruxton. It came following countless hours of hard work with Richard Dutton’s team and Andy Priaulx Sports Management. With qualifying seemingly mastered, the international kart champion will have turned his attention to race pace ahead of his trip to Cheshire.
Another driver on the up is Logan Sargeant (Carlin). Thruxton was his strongest weekend to date. The highlight being his first podium in the series. The American shone during pre-season, setting the pace in the test at Oulton Park at the beginning of February.
His team-mate Patrik Pasma is a mere two points behind him in the standings with a brace of podiums to his name. Karl Massaad (Double R) starred on the rostrum for the first time at Thruxton, bringing home his biggest haul of points of the campaign so far. Alex Quinn (TRS Arden) joined him with second in the same race and like Massaad the 2016 Rookie Champion is gunning for wins this weekend.
Jamie Sharp (Sharp Motorsport) and Harry Webb (Richardson Racing) were inseparable on track last time out, providing an exhilarating battle which saw Daniel Cao (Double R) also get in on the act. Sharp will intend to make home advantage count, with the Rochdale racer just an hour up the road from the circuit. Jacky Liu (GW Motorsport) is looking to record his first point score of the campaign; meanwhile Lucas Alecco Roy (Carlin) aims to return to the top 10 after a fruitless weekend at Thruxton.
There are two official test sessions at Oulton Park scheduled for Friday, with qualifying and two races on Saturday followed by a Sunday afternoon BTCC-supporting finale which will be televised live on ITV4.
Alex Battipaglia (Source: British F4)