19 MAY, 2018 – Arden’s Dennis Hauger has taken his maiden pole in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost at Thruxton and has done so in spectacular fashion.
The Red Bull Junior driver smashed the British F4 qualifying lap record at the Hampshire circuit with a lap of 1m 13.183s. The record had previously been held by Sandy Mitchell who took pole in 2015 for Arden with a lap of 1m 13.264s.
“It was a great session,” said poleman Hauger. “I wasn’t really sure which lap was my quickest because I couldn’t see it on the timer on my dash.
“The car was working really well. I managed to pump in quite a few good laps and took advantage of a tow when it mattered.
“It’s really warm so the tyres are working incredibly hard here and that means managing the grip levels throughout the race will be key to converting my first pole into a maiden victory.”
Championship leader Ayrton Simmons (JHR Developments) was once again in the thick of the battle for pole and was on provisional pole for much of the session thanks to a lap of 1m 13.424s.
However, Simmons will miss out on a front row start and instead line up 12th as a result of a 10-place grid penalty for contact at the Donington Park meeting three weeks ago.
It means that third fastest driver and Friday pacesetter Jack Doohan is promoted to second on the grid and in doing so secures an Arden and Red Bull Junior Team front row lock-out.
Paavo Tonteri maintained his form from Friday free practice. Once again proving to be the fifth fastest man out on track. His Double R Racing team-mate Kiern Jewiss just getting the better of him by a margin of 0.045s.
“The track is really hot which means you don’t get much time with the tyres performing at their best,” explained Jewiss. “This track is hard on tyres too.
“I’m pleased with the result and happy to be on the second row. There’s plenty of opportunities to get a tow and fight your way up to the front on the field. We just need to make sure we can look after the tyres so we can be strong throughout the race.
“As a driver you push as hard as you can in qualifying, but you have to remember that it’s an entire weekend of running so looking after the tyres is really important.”
Donington Park race winner Johnathan Hoggard continued to lead the Fortec Motorsports charge by recording the sixth fastest time, with team-mates Hampus Ericsson and Lucca Allen seventh and 13th fastest respectively.
Meanwhile, Patrik Pasma (Arden) just dipped under the 1m 14s mark with a 1m 13.972s to record a time good enough for eighth, which becomes a 13th place grid slot courtesy of a five-place grid penalty handed to him for unsafe manoeuvres at the previous Donington Park meeting.
The top 10 fastest drivers were completed by the Mexican duo of Sebastian Alvarez (Double R Racing) and Manuel Sulaiman (JHR Developments).
Round seven of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost follows at 1610.
F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost
Provisional qualifying times Thruxton, 19 May, 2018
1 Dennis HAUGER / NOR / Arden 1:13.183
2 Ayrton SIMMONS* / GBR / JHR 1:13.424
3 Jack DOOHAN / AUS / Arden 1:13.458
4 Kiern JEWISS / GBR / Double R 1:13.588
5 Paavo TONTERI / FIN / Double R 1:13.633
6 Johnathan HOGGARD / GBR / Fortec 1:13.704
7 Hampus ERICSSON / SWE / Fortec 1:13.929
8 Patrik PASMA** / FIN / Arden 1:13.972
9 Sebastian ALVAREZ / MEX / Double 1:14.030
10 Manuel SULAIMAN / MEX / JHR 1:14.123 etc.
*10-place grid penalty
**5-place grid penalty
Round 9 grid order (based on second-fastest times)
Hauger – Doohan – Tonteri – Jewiss – Hoggard – Simmons – Ericsson – Pasma – Alvarez – Sulaiman etc.