R3: Cresswell converts pole to victory as Zagazeta takes points lead

McKenzy Cresswell secured a fourth victory of the 2021 F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost season with another comfortable lights-to-flag triumph in the final race of the weekend at Croft.

Starting from pole position, the JHR Developments racer saw off an early challenge from fellow front row starter Matias Zagazeta (Phinsys by Argenti) at Clervaux on the opening tour, and from there set about establishing a margin at the front of the field.

Zagazeta came under increased fire from team-mate Aiden Neate in the closing laps, forcing the Peruvian on the defensive and allowing Cresswell to establish the 4.6-second advantage he would take to the chequered flag.

His fourth win of the campaign moves him level with James Hedley (Carlin) as the most successful driver on the grid, in terms of race victories, and propels the 15-year-old back into championship contention, as he leaves Yorkshire third in the points.

At the championship summit, the runner-up spot proved enough for Zagazeta to assume the points lead, with nearest rival and erstwhile leader Matthew Rees fifth behind Neate and Fortec Motorsport’s Joel Granfors in the next of JHR’s challengers.

Rees ran as high as third through the opening exchanges, but two near-identical moves at the Hairpin on consecutive laps promoted Neate – who went on to score a maiden career podium – and Granfors past the Welsh teenager as the contest wore on.

Zagazeta, therefore, will hold a slender 5-point margin over Rees heading to Silverstone next weekend, with Cresswell a further 20 markers back with nine races left to run.

Tasanapol Inthraphuvasak (Carlin) enjoyed another inspired run to sixth spot, and put Rees under pressure in the closing laps, but ultimately no opportunity for the Thai driver to pass presented itself. Joseph Loake was seventh in the final JHR machine, having slipped back after the opening exchanges.

David Morales (Arden Motorsport) put in arguably his most impressive showing in Britain’s FIA Formula 4 series to-date, the US racer putting in a series of moves to claw his way into the top eight, including a pass on Fortec’s Ollie Gray, who took ninth.

Kai Askey (Carlin) took the final point on offer in tenth, leading home Zak Taylor (Arden) and his Carlin team-mates Hedley and Dougie Bolger, winner of yesterdays reverse-grid contest. Georgi Dimitrov rounded out the finishers in the third Red Arrow, with Marcos Flack and Eduardo Coseteng (both Argenti) retirees after dramas on the opening tour.

Race Result – Round 20:

Pos. Name Team Intervals
1 McKenzy CRESSWELL JHR Developments 15 laps
2 Matias ZAGAZETA Phinsys by Argenti +4.625s
3 Aiden NEATE Phinsys by Argenti +4.825s
4 Joel GRANFORS Fortec Motorsport +7.957s
5 Matthew REES JHR Developments +11.166s
6 Tasanapol INTHRAPHUVASAK Carlin +11.921s
7 Joseph LOAKE JHR Developments +17.500s
8 David MORALES Arden Motorsport +17.665s
9 Ollie GRAY Fortec Motorsport +18.614s
10 Kai ASKEY Carlin +18.904s
11 Zak TAYLOR Arden Motorsport +21.375s
12 James HEDLEY Carlin +23.775s
13 Dougie BOLGER Carlin +24.058s
14 Georgi DIMITROV Arden Motorsport +24.297s
DNF Marcos FLACK Phinsys by Argenti +13 laps
DNF Eduardo COSETENG Phinsys by Argenti +14 laps