Silverstone front-runners reflect on action packed evening

Three stars of the most recent British F4 iRacing Trophy event at Silverstone have given their thoughts on a frenetic, action-packed evening of virtual racing.

Fortec Motorsport’s Chris Lulham split the victories with Carlin racer Zak O’Sullivan to open up a nine-point advantage over his team mate Luke Browning, with the series set to mark it’s halfway stage at Oulton Park next Monday (18th May).

His win in the opening contest around the 1.6-mile National circuit came despite race-long pressure from Arden’s Sebastian Priaulx, and he fought back well to take fifth in the reverse-grid race despite some damage whilst disputing the final podium spot.

“Tonight’s racing was interesting as usual,” said Lulham.

“The fast repairs kept the grid packed along with the use of safety cars. My first race was pretty smooth, with an almost heart-breaking moment on Lap 19 with a spinning car, but collecting the win with Priaulx chasing and keeping the pressure on all race was rewarding.

“In race two, I went from P17 to P6 in two corners at the start, but some contact due to another drivers aggressive attempt whilst fighting for P3 gave me damage and I fell back to P7, again gathering some more points.”

For Lulham’s team mate Browning, a third pole position of the season was a pleasing result, with the focus after that on taking as many points as possible.

He will head into next week’s event at Oulton Park, the Cheshire racer’s home circuit, with high hopes of closing the gap back down to Lulham.

“Silverstone got off to a great start in qualifying, taking my third pole position of the season,” said Browning.

“I knew it would be so tight just because of the nature of the track. My plan was just to get through this round with as minimal damage as possible.

“Coming away only five points off the lead of the championship (this would later be extended to nine as other drivers incurred penalties) puts me in a good position for my home track, Oulton Park, next Monday.”

Alexey Nesov was only confirmed on the grid a few hours prior to practice at Silverstone, but the Russian – third in last season’s SMP F4 Championship – scored a podium finish on his debut and was in contention to make it a double in race two.

“My first ever appearance in British F4 was really successful,” explained Nesov.

“Besides the qualifying, the pace was pretty good. In race one, I fought my way up to P4 and then was chasing Zane, but then the lapped car just crashed into him and almost collected me as well, I had to go off and got a slowdown. As a result, Nico caught me and we had an interesting last few laps.

“From the reverse start I managed to survive as well. Close to the end, I was following Zane again, we’d caught Christian [Mansell], who was really hard to pass. But I made an unexpected move into Brooklands, got P4 and was trying to get Zane. Our speed was nearly the same, and so I only had time to gain half a second.

“Overall, I’m really happy with the result and looking forward to the next rounds.”