Lights-to-flag triumph for Luke Browning in Knockhill finale

Luke Browning eased to victory from pole position in the final F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost race of the weekend at Knockhill.

Starting at the front courtesy of the quickest second-best time in qualifying, Fortec racer Browning made no mistake at the start, keeping Argenti Motorsport’s Casper Stevenson at arm’s length before establishing a gap.

He would gradually extend that lead over the race distance, eventually taking the chequered flag with a comfortable margin of 4.541 seconds and a new race lap record of 49.277.

That takes Browning to five victories for the 2020 season, and boosts his championship lead over Carlin’s Zak O’Sullivan – third on the road in this one – to 38 points with 14 races remaining.

O’Sullivan claimed third on the opening lap with a bold lunge to the inside of Arden’s Alex Connor at Clark, timing it perfectly to set off in pursuit of Stevenson.

Though he put the Argenti racer under a little pressure towards the closing stages, he ultimately couldn’t get close enough to challenge for the runner-up spot and the two finished in that order.

Connor dropped back from the top three after the opening laps, but held off JHR’s James Hedley to secure fourth and fifth respectively.

Hedley had dropped back behind Fortec’s Roberto Faria on the opening tour of the 1.26-mile Fife circuit, but a dive to the inside at Duffus Dip rewarded the BRDC Rising Star and from there he was able to keep the Brazilian at arm’s length.

Faria took sixth to keep the pressure on Hedley in the standings, with Arden’s Roman Bilinski a solid seventh to round out the triple-header in Scotland.

Rafael Villagomez made it a brace of Rookie Cup victories with eighth on the road for Fortec, the Mexican triumphing after a good battle late-race with Arden’s Frederick Lubin, who takes second in class.

Lubin had capitalised on an earlier battle between Villagomez and JHR’s Abbi Pulling to move ahead, but another superb move into Duffus Dip reversed the positions once again.

A DNF after for Christian Mansell (Carlin) after losing his rear wing, however, means Lubin closes on the Australian in the Rookie standings.

Pulling was also a non-finisher with a mechanical problem to round out an unlucky trip to Knockhill; her JHR team mate Nathanael Hodgkiss ended the weekend in the final points-paying position in tenth.

Nico Pino took 11th – and third in the Rookie class – whilst Reema Juffali (Argenti) emerged from a good dice with Matias Zagazeta (Carlin) in front of the ITV2 cameras to take 12th and 13th respectively.

The F4 British Championship resumes at Thruxton, Hampshire, over the weekend of 19-20 September.

More to follow…