Italian F.4 Championship

sabato 7 maggio 2022

Antonelli, Dunne and Domingues in pole in the 3 races

The tyres are the great variable in qualifying

At the Enzo and Dino Ferrari circuit of Imola the second generation Tatuus cars of the Italian F.4 Championship open the day with the qualifying session. Cloudy, but not raining, on a track still wet from the recent storms in the first session, at 9.00, all the drivers go out with Pirelli rain tyres, except for Alexander Dunne, Marcus Amand and Cacper Sztuka, three of the five US Racing drivers, who chose slicks, but shortly afterwards return to change.

In the first session of 15′ comes the time for Andrea Kimi Antonelli, Prema Racing, also representative of ACI Team Italy and Mercedes Junior Driver program, who earns the pole in race 1 with a lap of 1’57.59. He is followed by teammate Rafael Camara, Brazilian talent in the Ferrari Driver Academy program. Behind them Nikita Bedrin (PHM Racing) and Martinus Stenshorne (Van Amersfoort Racing).

In the break before entering the second qualifying session many are looking for an advantage from the slick tyres. At the restart, in fact, only Maya Weug (Iron Lynx), Jonas Ried, Nikita Bedrin, Victoria Blokhina (three PHM Racing drivers) and Elia Sperandio (Maffi Racing) are on wet tyres. The session is however immediately interrupted by a red flag before recording valid times, forcing the drivers to return to the pits, which is already an opportunity for a very first set-up change and Pedro Perino (US Racing), Ismail Akhmed (AKM Motorsport), Ethan Ischer (Jenzer Motorsport), Ivan Domingues (Iron Lynx), Frederik Lund (R-ace GP), Cacper Sztuka (US Racing) take advantage of it. During the course of the session more and more drivers choose to go back to the Pirelli rain tyres. The best lap goes to Alexander Dunne, who gets the pole position in race 2 with 1’55.662, then Lund and Ivan Domingues. Fourth place to Maya Weug, also a talented driver in the Ferrari Driver Academy program, followed by Pedro Clerot (AKM Motorsport), Cacper Sztuka, Elia Sperandio, Jonas Ried and the other female driver present in the first round of the season, Victoria Blokhina. In p10 the first of the drivers on slicks, Anthony James Wharton, for the Prema Racing team that is not repaid by the risky choice.

Ivan Franco Domingues, with 1’57.518, obtains the pole position in race 3. Sztuka, Weug and Barnard start with the Portuguese driver from the first rows.

Andrea Kimi Antonelli: «it was a tricky qualifying because the track was drying and drying, with wet tires we lost a lot of grip towards the end, but we brought home the pole position in race 1».

Alexander Dunne: “Very tricky condition this morning, we made the right choice last minute and put wet tyres on, and it paid off.  It is an incredibly competitive year, a lot of really good driver, it’s gonna be really close”.

Ivan Franco Domingues: “Now I have to focus on race 1 and 2 and then think about starting in pole position”    

Race 1 (30′ +1) broadcast live on ACI Sport TV and live streaming on the social media pages of the Championship starting at 14.50 (race start at 14.55). Sunday, May 8, Race 2 at 10.30 am, then the closure of the weekend with Race 3 at 5.30 pm.

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