Alex Quinn: British F4 Rookie Champion in profile

28 SEPTEMBER, 2016 – With all eyes on the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford season finale at Brands Hatch this weekend and the six drivers still in contention for the title, one contender arrives with 2016 champion status already to his name. Fortec Motorsports’ Alex Quinn wrapped up the Rookie class in style last time out at Silverstone with his third overall victory of the season. The first of which came in only his fourth ever car race on the back of a fantastic pole position at Donington Park.

Quinn has been nothing short of exceptional in the Rookie class. 2016 has seen the 15-year-old from Camelford, Cornwall put in some virtuoso performances and thoroughly stamp his authority all over the Rookie standings. 16 class wins and a total of 23 class podiums putting him well clear of the chasing rookie pack.

Said the Rookie class champion: “I cannot express my feelings. I’m so happy. I need to say a huge thanks to the Racing Steps Foundation and Fortec because without them I wouldn’t be here, let alone at the front.”

“I’m really happy with the car and my performance. I pushed as hard as I could to get the win at Silverstone and showed that I can race through the field, as well as lead from the front.”

“It’s a relief to finally become Rookie champion. We’ve been dominant in the class for quite a few races. It wasn’t clear-cut when we were going to win it. We had a good chance and it’s good to get it done so we can focus on just winning races now.”

Quinn landed a fully funded drive with Fortec Motorsports thanks to the Racing Steps Foundation after impressing in a three day, 10-driver assessment staged by the not-for-profit Foundation last October. He has not looked back since.

Explained RSF co-ordinator Derek Walters: “Alex’s attitude and feedback, as well as the way he conducts himself has always been impressive. The great thing about Alex is that you can tell him things. He learns and then understands it, be that on the mental or physical side. He’s hungry to learn and we have seen him mature during the course of the season.

“The Foundation was put together way back in 2007 and its philosophy is to get people like Alex to develop into professional drivers. It has proved very successful.

“The F4 British Championship is a good place to be, especially with the MSA involved. We’re very happy. There are a great bunch of people running the series and we love being involved with Ford at the sharp end of racing. It’s a natural place for us to gravitate to as young drivers come out of karting.”

Commented Fortec Motorsports team owner Richard Dutton: “Alex has done a great job this season, especially for someone as young as he is. He’s been seriously impressive. His success has been great for Fortec Motorsports and the Racing Steps Foundation in the F4 British Championship. We’re very good at developing young drivers. It’s what we aim to do and it’s working.”

Quinn has been a shining example of the progression the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford enables drivers to make. From a quiet Cornish racer to a formidable competitor who doesn’t need to be asked twice to go for a gap when he sees it; Quinn’s rapid rate of development has been a highlight in a season blessed with many.

Although mathematically Quinn’s overall title chances are slim, one thing is certain, the on-track exploits of a 15-year-old with a very bright motorsport career ahead of him are sure to be savoured by many this weekend.

Quinn riding high after textbook Silverstone British F4 win

  • Lights to flag victory for Fortec Motorsports’ Alex Quinn.
  • Max Fewtrell battles through field in bid to cling on to championship lead.

SILVERSTONE 18 SEPTEMBER, 2016 – Alex Quinn celebrated being crowned Rookie class champion by winning Round 26 of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford in textbook fashion.

A flawless start from pole saw him stay ahead of fellow front row starter Luis Leeds, with the Racing Steps Foundation ace then proceeding to break away from the field. His progress was halted just under halfway into the race when the safety car was deployed to recover team-mate Kjaergaard’s stricken car. Quinn wasn’t fazed however, mastering the restart and pulling out a gap to Rafael Martins.

Said a jubilant Quinn: “I cannot express my feelings. I’m so happy. I need to say a huge thanks to the Racing Steps Foundation and Fortec because without them I wouldn’t be here, let alone at the front.”

“I’m really happy with the car and the performance of myself. I pushed as hard as I could to get the win. I’ve shown this weekend that I can race through the field and lead from the front which is great.”

Martins had looked strong all weekend and after an excellent sixth place finish yesterday was full of fight today, leaping past TRS Arden team-mate Ayrton Simmons off the line and then scything past Luis Leeds on the following lap at Becketts.

“I think it was quite a good race on the first few laps for me,” said Martins. “I couldn’t catch Alex. He did a great job. I thought after the safety car I could have a chance, but he did a great job at the restart.

“I think in the beginning I was quicker than Luis and then towards the end he was a bit quicker, but I had it under control. Since Friday we have been quick. Qualifying we struggled a little with the mixed weather, but we are doing a great job this weekend.”

Leeds was understandably cautious in the early stages; not completely sure of the car underneath him following his puncture and damage sustained in the first race of the weekend, as well as being mindful of preserving tyres. However, as the race progressed his confidence behind the wheel came back in full force as he hounded Martins for second until the end.

Explained Leeds: “I got good points in the championship and scored more points than any of the other contenders although it wasn’t my greatest of races.

“With the puncture I had yesterday we didn’t have the best of tyres for this race. Two tyres were scrapped so we had to use some new tyres, but I had to preserve them for the race this afternoon when we start from pole.”

JHR’s Sennan Fielding made impressive progress up the order throughout the race, from eighth up to fourth. One of his victims was Ayrton Simmons who was under attack for much of the race, but put on a credible defensive display suggesting the youngest driver on the grid can mix it with the best. A spirited battle with Carlin’s Max Fewtrell a particular highlight.

Said Simmons: “It was pretty exciting. The first five laps especially. I had quite a lot of cars behind me. I managed to keep with the fast guys. I had a good battle with Fewtrell. It was a great experience racing up the front. Hopefully next time we start at the front we can do an even better job.”

There was no stopping Fewtrell however. The championship leader going into the race had it all to do starting from the penultimate row of the grid and he picked his way through the field expertly. His move around the outside of Simmons at Brooklands thrilling spectators. It set up an entertaining battle between himself and team-mates DeFrancesco and Pull, as well as Fielding and Goddard.

Pull was awarded a five second penalty for exceeding track limits costing him a points finish, but team-mate DeFrancesco fared better. A move down the inside of Goddard as they headed towards Becketts earning him fifth and the chance to take the fight to Fielding.

Fielding wasn’t prepared to relinquish fourth to his title rival, holding off the Canadian to bring home enough points to become joint leader of the championship with Fewtrell heading into Round 27.

Double R’s Carrie Schreiner put in another great performance to break into the top 10 and add another championship point to her tally for the season, whilst Jack Martin made a welcome return to the Rookie podium.

Billy Monger suffered a spin early on having been one of the fastest cars on track, but struck back to get up to 11th place at the fall of the chequered flag, tantalisingly close to the points.

Petru Florescu’s race was thwarted before it even began with a technical gremlin rearing its head on the formation lap and resulting in the Romanian losing ground in the standings.

Lights go out for the Silverstone finale at 1515 which will be screened live on ITV4.

F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford

Provisional results Round 26 Silverstone 18 September 2016
20 laps / 32.8 miles
1 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 20m 41.423s / 95.14mph
2 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +1.215s
3 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +1.876s
4 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +4.639s
5 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +4.858s
6 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +5.163s
7 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +5.655s
8 Ayrton SIMMONS / GBR / Arden +6.333s
9 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec +9.362s
10 Carrie SCHREINER / GER / Double R +9.751s etc.

Fastest lap: Max Fewtrell / Carlin 57.221 / 103.20mph

Rookie class: 1 Quinn; 2 Simmons; 3 Martin

Provisional championship standings: =1 Fewtrell 293; =1 Fielding 293; 3 Leeds 271; 4 DeFrancesco 247; 5 Pull 240; 5 DeFrancesco 237; 6 Quinn 239; 7 Florescu 230; 8 Goddard 205; 9 Martins 174; 10 Caroline 148 etc.

Rookie class: 1 Quinn 517; 2 Kjaergaard 343; 3 J Martin 342; 4 Simmons 330; 5 R Martin 130

Full results

Zane Goddard blitzes British F4 field for Knockhill win

  • Goddard in a league of his own as he flies to second British F4 win of the year.
  • Quinn makes it a hat-trick of Rookie class victories at Knockhill.
  • Leeds pulls off stunning overtake on his way to second in the race and the standings.

KNOCKHILL 14 AUGUST, 2016 – Zane Goddard claimed an emphatic win in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford feature race at Knockhill. He led home compatriot Luis Leeds and Racing Steps Foundation backed Alex Quinn.

Goddard had been exceptional off the line in the preceding British F4 races this weekend and it was the same story for Round 21 of the Championship, as he flew past Leeds for second place into turn one.

The Australian then set about Quinn who led from pole. The breakthrough came sooner than he perhaps imagined. Quinn locked up on tyres that weren’t quite up to optimal temperature into Taylor’s Hairpin and Goddard needed no encouragement to scythe his way up the inside.

His Double R-prepared race car looked like it was on rails around the 1.27 mile Fife track; the team clearly having set the car up perfectly. Goddard maximised the Ford EcoBoost-powered machinery at his disposal and was simply untouchable, unsurprisingly recording fastest lap on the way to his second British F4 victory.

Said Goddard: “I was super consistent. It felt perfect. The whole race played out perfectly. It couldn’t have been any better. I’m really happy. Huge thanks to the team and the fans. They’ve been great and cheering me on as I crossed the line.

“The car was so good it was hard to actually do anything wrong in it. The car was hooked up and fantastic.

“The starts have been so good lately. We keep nailing them and hopefully we can keep this up in the future.”

“Knockhill is a track where there isn’t too much braking which means you’re pushing the car quite hard most of the time and to the limit which is tricky to do, but it’s rewarding when it works out.

Despite losing out to Goddard at the start there was no let-up from Leeds who focused on getting past Quinn and he did so with arguably the overtake of the weekend.

The Red Bull Junior ducking to the outside of Quinn into Taylor’s Hairpin forcing him to cover and then making a split-second switch down the Fortec racer’s inside under braking without locking up. A beautiful move, showcasing extremely fair and respectful driving from both drivers who exhibited true class.

Explained Leeds: “We had a lot of pace. This weekend started off pretty average in qualifying when we were unfortunate not to be on slicks at the right time, but we didn’t lose our focus.

“We got pole for race two and turned things around from there. We’re pretty close to leading the championship now and we must keep moving forward.

“This morning I was 48 points off the lead and now I’m only five away which is the beauty of this sport.

Speaking about his epic overtaking manoeuvre: “I learnt that move from Daniel Ricciardo when he did something very similar to Vettel at Monza when they were team-mates and I really hope he gets to watch my move today.

“I saw Alex make a mistake and I was originally going to go around the outside, but I thought I would make it look cool and switch to going down the inside. It looks pretty cool on camera I think.”

Quinn was solid in third and rounded out a strong weekend with yet another Rookie class victory. His 12th of the campaign.

Said Quinn: “I lost the lead to Zane on the opening lap and I think that was just down to tyre temperature which we have been struggling with all weekend, but I’m still really happy with this. A win (following’s Florescu’s exclusion from the meeting) and a podium is not a bad thing to be coming out of the weekend with.

“I’m really happy with my performance and the team’s performance. It’s definitely been a step higher after the summer break. It’s great to be back at the top here and I’m looking forward to the next round.”

A cracking battle for fourth emerged as the race progressed as JHR’s Sennan Fielding found himself fending off Max Fewtrell, Rafael Martins and James Pull. The latter having already pulled off superb move to overtake Kjaergaard.

Commented Fielding: “We made quite a drastic change to the car before the race which didn’t seem to work so I did well to get fourth. I’ve not felt too well in myself all weekend so I think this is one of those weekends you just have to brush under the carpet.

“We could have capitalised more on what happened this weekend [to other title rivals]. We had good pace in the car, but I know we have good pace in the car for Rockingham too and we were quick there last year. We’ve made a lot of improvements since then and I know we can do a really good job.”

Meanwhile Caroline and DeFrancesco resumed battle after the day’s earlier race as they jostled for eighth in entertaining fashion.

Kjaergaard rounded out the top ten claiming a well-deserved point and closing the gap to Jack Martin for second in the Rookie class, with Martin crossing the line less than three tenths behind the Dane.

Said Kjaergaard: “It’s been a tough weekend really. We’ve struggled with the setup of the car and I haven’t managed to adapt to this track as well as I would have hoped. I still managed to keep some of the rookies’ behind me though which has given me good points for the rookie championship.”

Ayrton Simmons and Frank Bird also showcased their wheel to wheel prowess with an enthralling battle for much of the race, whilst Monger was unfortunate to spin having been as high as sixth.

Provisional results Round 21 Knockhill 14 August 2016
24 laps / 30.4 miles
1 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R 20m 18.396s / 89.84 mph
2 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +5.815s
3 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec +8.354s
4 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +11.276s
5 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +11.593s
6 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +12.092s
7 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +12.533s
8 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec +21.287s
9 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +21.603s
10 Nicolai KJAERGAARD / DEN / Fortec +26.364s etc.

Fastest lap Zane Goddard 50.232s / 90.80 mph

Rookie class 1 Quinn, 2 Kjaergaard, 3 Martin, 4 Simmons

Provisional championship standings
1 Fewtrell 232, 2 Leeds 227, 3 DeFrancesco 214, =4 Fielding 210, =4 Pull 210, 6 Florescu 202, 7 Goddard 178, 8 Quinn 174, 9 Martins 128, 10 Caroline 122 etc.

Rookie class
1 Quinn 399, 2 J. Martin 288, 3 Kjaergaard 283, 4 Simmons 236, 5 R. Martin 130

Full results

Quinn claims win following Florescu exclusion

14 AUGUST, 2016 – Following investigations into on-track incidents in Round 20 of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford, the result from Round 19 of the Championship has been amended.

Officials chose to exclude Petru Florescu from the Knockhill meeting due a trackside altercation during Round 20 and record six penalty points on his licence. Devlin DeFrancesco and Jamie Caroline have both been handed ten place grid penalties to be taken when possible to do so and three penalty points on their respective licences.

Florescu’s exclusion means that Fortec Motorsports’ and Racing Steps Foundation backed Alex Quinn becomes the winner of Round 19 of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford and sees Double R’s Zane Goddard promoted to the final podium place.

Amended provisional results Knockhill 13 August 2016
20 laps / 25.3 miles
1 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 20m 45.077s / 73.25mph
2 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +0.461s
3 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +0.850s
4 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec +3.102s
5 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +4.678s
6 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +5.552s
7 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +5.766s
8 Jack MARTIN / GBR / Arden +8.823s
9 Ayrton SIMMONS +10.198s
10 Nicolai KJAERGAARD / DEN / Fortec +11.239s etc.

Fastest lap Max Fewtrell / Carlin 50.226s / 90.81mph

Rookie class 1 Quinn, 2 Martin, 3 Simmons, 4 Kjaergaard

Full times

Red Bull Junior Leeds charges to British F4 victory as fireworks fly

  • Luis Leeds shines on his way to third British F4 win.
  • Championship leaders Florescu and DeFrancesco crash out.
  • Enthralling 13 car battle for the final podium place.

KNOCKHILL 14 AUGUST, 2016 – Luis Leeds stood on the top step of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford podium for the third time this season after a perfect drive from pole.

The Red Bull Junior star made a clean getaway off the line and had enough pace in hand to keep Double R’s fast starting Zane Goddard at bay. Goddard having leapt past Jamie Caroline who stuttered off the line due to making a false start fractions of a second beforehand.

The two Aussies sped away from the field unaware of the drama that was to unfold behind them. Leeds recording fastest lap in the process and bringing home a victory which puts him right in the thick of the championship battle.

Said a beaming Leeds: “We’ve had a tough run of things lately, but we’ve worked so hard as a team. The car feels pretty perfect this weekend. We’re really on it and really starting to get things together now so we can be a real contender for this championship.

“I was pushing hard every lap out there. I was pretty chilled out at the start. I knew what I had to do. I then just kept my head down and pushed lap after lap.

“Everyone has had their share of bad luck this season. Hopefully we’ve had all of ours and we can get this championship.

“Big thanks to Dr Marko, the Red Bull team and Arden who are behind me. Things are going really well and we just need to keep this form going now.”

Commented Goddard: “I got a good start again. Not quite as good as yesterday, but fortunately Jamie didn’t get a good start so I got past him straight away and then I was behind Luis. I was quicker than him in some parts of the track and he was quicker in others. Second is great with really good points.

I think the team and I have done a fantastic job to be fighting at the front against the bigger teams so all credit to Double R. This result is well deserved. Hopefully we can get another good start in the final race and be on the podium again.”

Caroline received a 10 second time penalty for his false start but in typical Caroline fashion fought tooth and nail with a plethora of cars behind. It quickly became a 13 car battle for the final podium place as a train of Ford EcoBoost-powered cars raced nose to tail around the 1.27-mile Knockhill circuit.

Carlin’s DeFrancesco and Petru Florescu were in the pound seats swarming all over the back the back of Caroline. DeFrancesco ducking and diving in his attempts to get past the Fortec racer. It was to no avail however and as the race drew ever closer to its conclusion it ended in tears for the Carlin pairing.

Caroline’s robust defence unsettling DeFrancesco at Taylor’s hairpin, allowing Florescu to move alongside his team-mate down the main straight. The title rivals made contact, sliding into the tyre barriers and blowing the title race wide open.

Following the incident the officials chose to exclude Florescu from the meeting due to a trackside altercation, whilst DeFrancesco and Caroline were handed ten place grid penalties to be taken when possible to do so.

Fortec Motorsports’ Alex Quinn found himself surrounded by the Carlin quartet for much of the race. Petru Florescu sneaking past early on, but then found James Pull and Max Fewtrell all over him. Fewtrell eventually found a way past and the fireworks between his team-mates provided him with a valuable third place.

Said Fewtrell: “Starting eighth I knew it would hectic around a track like this. It was kind of like karting all over again. I did a few good moves to get myself up the order and then I knew it would kick off so I was just waiting, ready to pounce.

“I think I did well and I’m happy with the podium after a difficult day yesterday. You’ve always got to keep an open mind and try to place yourself in the right position to be in the right place at the right time. Sometimes it goes your way and sometimes it doesn’t. Thankfully today it did.”

Despite just missing out on the podium, Quinn found consolation in claiming his 11th Rookie class win of the year. Ayrton Simmons joined him on the podium for the second time of the weekend taking sixth overall, whilst Kjaergaard made a welcome return to the rookie celebrations with third in class.

Explained Quinn: “It was a harder race compared to yesterday because we weren’t on new tyres and others were. The car has improved though, but I would like a little bit more for the race this afternoon.

“I’m starting from pole so I think we have a good opportunity to take the win, but it’s going to be all about getting a good start and building a gap which I think we can do.

“All the Carlin cars have been so strong this season so it was tough against them. I struggled with a bit of understeer in turn six which had an impact down the back straight where there is a good opportunity to overtake so I had to defend really hard, but I did my best and still got fourth.”

JHR’s duo of Sennan Fielding and Billy Monger showed flashes front running pace, fighting up the order, but found themselves bottled up behind Simmons and Martins ahead. In a full blown TRS Arden vs JHR Developments duel, it was the resplendent red TRS Arden cars which came out on top.

Falcon Motorsports’ Alexandra Mohnhaupt drove brilliantly, equalling her best finish of her fledgling British F4 career.

Provisional results Round 20 Knockhill 14 August 2016
17 laps / 21.53 miles
1 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden 16m 15.334s / 79.49 mph
2 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +0.467s
3 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +2.257s
4 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec +3.026s
5 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +3.448s
6 Ayrton SIMMONS / GBR / Arden +4.018s
7 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +5.343s
8 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +6.188s
9 Billy MONGER / GBR / JHR +6.568s
10 Frank BIRD / GBR / Fortec +7.534s etc.

Fastest lap Luis Leeds 49.814s / 91.56 mph

Rookie class 1 Quinn, 2 Simmons, 3 Kjaergaard

Round 21 grid Quinn – Leeds – Goddard – Fielding – Monger – Fewtrell – Martins – Pull – Kjaergaard – DeFrancesco etc.

Full results

Florescu extends F4 British Championship lead with Knockhill victory

  • Lights to flag victory for Carlin’s Petru Florescu at Knockhill.
  • No shortage of entertainment as Messrs DeFrancesco, Goddard, Caroline, Leeds, Pull and Fewtrell all fought their way up the order.

KNOCKHILL 13 AUGUST, 2016 – Petru Florescu put in a textbook performance at Knockhill to claim his sixth victory of the season and extend his championship lead in round 19 of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford.

Not for the first time this year the Carlin driver put in a flawless drive from pole. He controlled the race, looking after his tyres and expertly dealt with the pressure of two safety car restarts; slowing the pack right down at the apex of the final corner and flooring the throttle to get the jump on his pursuers.

Said race winner Florescu: “I was able to handle the safety car restarts well and I planned how I would attack them in my mind. I’m also happy for my team-mate Devlin [DeFrancesco] who came third.

“The race was a normal flag to flag race for me. It was pretty straightforward. It feels really good to extend the championship lead and I hope to do well for the rest of the weekend.”

Fortec Motorsports’ Alex Quinn chased the Romanian home, making a welcome return to the podium and ending Nicolai Kjaergaard’s run of consecutive Rookie class wins. His team-mate finding himself under attack for much of the race as title contenders DeFrancesco, Leeds, Pull and Fewtrell fought their way through the field having been caught out by the drying conditions in qualifying.

DeFrancesco was particularly impressive, overtaking both Goddard and Kjaergaard in one corner after the first safety car restart. He then set about hounding Quinn for second place in the latter stages.

However, Quinn was inch perfect in his defence to keep the Canadian at bay in an extremely tense final few laps for the Racing Steps Foundation backed youngster.

Explained Quinn: “It was really difficult to defend and attack at the same time, but I managed to pull it off. I worked out where Devlin was quick and that made me more relaxed because I knew where on the circuit I had to really push.

“Starting on pole tomorrow [in race three] means we have a good chance to win and hopefully we can do that. I’m looking forward to it. We’ve shown today that we are really quick.”

Added DeFrancesco: “It was a very hectic race. I made a mistake at the start which is unusual for me so we need to analyse that, but we had great pace. The car was fantastic.

“We were really pressuring Quinn, but he did a great job to keep me behind. I think we had the pace for second, but it was great to come through from sixth after making the mistake at the start.

“I’m now second in the championship. It was a great job by the team and all my engineers.”

Luis Leeds managed to fend off a ferocious pair of drivers in the form of title rivals Pull and Fewtrell for sixth who were all over the back of the Red Bull liveried race car towards the end. The latter posting the fastest lap of the race on the penultimate lap.

The sixth place for Leeds was made all the sweeter by the fact that it earns him the reverse grid pole for race two tomorrow, giving the TRS Arden racer the chance to make further inroads towards the title he craves.

Ahead of Leeds finished Double R’s Zane Goddard and Fortec Motorsports’ Jamie Caroline. Both put on spirited drives to climb several places.

Goddard’s jump up the order was particularly eye catching. The Australian making a lightning start off the line. He shot past DeFrancesco and then boldly hung around the outside of Frank Bird into turn one to take fourth behind Kjaergaard after Rafael Martins was forced to start from the pit lane due to technical gremlins.

Commented Goddard: “It was a mega start. It sort of felt like it bogged down a bit, but I think the others got a bit of wheel spin. I jumped Devlin and got around the outside of Bird which was tight, but I pulled it off.

“Devlin passed me later on, but I got Kjaergaard at the same time. I’m happy with fourth. Good points. It was a hard race, but very enjoyable. I love this track. We’ll see what we can do tomorrow.”

Martins wasn’t the only driver to suffer misfortune early on. Sennan Fielding’s race unfortunately brought to a premature end at Taylor’s Hairpin as a result of a mid-pack opening lap skirmish, ultimately bringing out the first safety car.

TRS Arden’s rookies Jack Martin and Ayrton Simmons rounded out the top ten, taking valuable points and another rookie class podium for their respective campaigns.

Meanwhile Falcon Motorsport’s Alexandra Mohnhaupt finished just outside the top ten after another solid and confidence boosting performance.

The F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford action continues tomorrow with two races – the reverse-grid race at 1100 and then the feature race, to be screened live on ITV4 at 1625, with Quinn starting from top spot.

F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford

Provisional results Round 19 Knockhill 13 August 2016
20 laps / 25.3 miles
1 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin 20m 44.367s / 73.30mph
2 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec +0.710s
3 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +1.171s
4 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +1.560s
5 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec +3.812s
6 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +5.388s
7 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +6.292s
8 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +6.467s
9 Jack MARTIN / GBR / Arden +9.533s
10 Ayrton SIMMONS +10.908s etc.

Fastest lap Max Fewtrell / Carlin 50.226s / 90.81mph

Rookie class 1 Quinn, 2 Martin, 3 Simmons, 4 Kjaergaard

Grid for Round 20 Leeds – Caroline – Goddard – DeFrancesco – Quinn – Florescu – Pull – Fewtrell – Martin – Simmons etc.

Provisional championship standings
1 Florescu 230, 2 DeFrancesco 212, 3 Fewtrell 205, 4 Fielding 194, 5 Pull 192, 6 Leeds 182, 7 Quinn 140, 8 Goddard 132, 9 Caroline 125, 10 Martins 114 etc.

Rookie class
1 Quinn 349, 2 J. Martin 273, 3 Kjaergaard 250, 4 Simmons 205, 5 R. Martin 130

Full results

Florescu leaves it late for British F4 pole at Knockhill

  • Carlin’s Petru Florescu claims thrilling last gasp pole.
  • All four of Fortec Motorsports’ drivers star after team’s inspired decision to switch to slicks.

KNOCKHILL 13 AUGUST, 2016 – Championship leader Petru Florescu was in the right place at the right time at Knockhill thanks to an expertly judged last gasp switch to slicks to claim his sixth pole of the season in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford.

With a dry line beginning to emerge after a sudden downpour at the start of qualifying Carlin’s Florescu and Fortec Motorsports’ quartet of runners boldly elected to come into the pits to fit slick tyres with just minutes remaining. The battle for pole rapidly becoming all about who could get their slick tyres up to temperature and cross the line last before the chequered flag fell.

Florescu used every ounce of his experience and guile to time his run to perfection. Having crossed the line with one second to spare, he proceeded to light up the timing screens to steal pole from Fortec’s Alex Quinn with a 51.447s lap.

Said the poleman: “I managed to get two flying laps on the slicks and I almost went off on the second lap because I was pushing so hard. It was a good qualifying and now we’ll see what we can do in the race.

“I made the call to change the tyres. I saw a dry line forming, but I didn’t know how dry it was in the first sector. I thought it was still going to be wet, but I saw it was dry and just pushed.”

The Fortec Motorsports runners were the first to make the inspired switch which paid huge dividends. Racing Steps Foundation-backed star Alex Quinn going second quickest and netting pole for the final race of the weekend courtesy of his second fastest lap time.

Commented Quinn: “I’m so excited. It’s really good to be back at the front after Snetterton and I’m looking forward to the next races. To be on the front row for race one and pole for race three is what we wanted, although it would have been nice to have pole for race one but that’s how it goes sometimes.

“The track was drying and I was always wondering when it would be possible to go to slicks. It was quite difficult on the slicks in the first sector because it was so wet and it was hard to judge how much I could push because the track was drying so quickly. I think we did really well to get on top of that.”

Jamie Caroline looked like a real contender in the dying minutes, twice posting times good enough for provisional pole, only to have them removed for track limits. A clean lap finally arriving on his last attempt, but leaving Caroline ruing a case of what might have been compounded by a five place grid penalty carried over from Snetterton a fortnight ago.

Said Caroline: “It could have been even better. I didn’t have enough time to warm the tyres up properly and I feel that if I hadn’t been so close to Petru on my final lap I would have been able to get a really good time in.

“It was such a fine line between the dry line and the wet line out there. I understeered onto a wet patch on my final lap and thankfully I didn’t spin, but that moment cost me pole. I was loving it out there though on a damp track with slicks.”

Added Fortec Motorsports team manager Dan Mitchell: “We tested here last year in November and Alex had 20 minutes in the sort of conditions we had today so we knew the crossover time. As soon as we hit that time we brought the cars in for slicks.

“The mechanics did an awesome job changing the tyres. To change tyres on all four cars so quickly to get them out there and qualify so well is brilliant.”

Rafael Martins was quickest of the TRS Arden drivers ahead of Fortec’s Nicolai Kjaergaard and Frank Bird; the latter having by far his best qualifying of the season.

Explained Bird: “It feels really good and it’s a great result for the Fortec team. Hopefully we can carry this through into the race.

“I didn’t know how well I was doing out there because the lap times weren’t showing on my dashboard. When I pitted for slicks I wasn’t sure if it was the right decision, but then there was a dry line on the last few laps and it paid off.”

Championship protagonists Leeds, Fielding, Fewtrell and Pull remained on wet tyres and this proved to be their undoing as the track conditions went away from them. They will line up 10th, 11th, 12th, and 13th respectively, but are sure to provide an entertaining spectacle as they try to fight through the field.

Fellow title contender Devlin DeFrancesco fared better in qualifying. He will start from the third row of the grid and look to take further points away from his rivals.

Double R Racing’s Zane Goddard’s ended up seventh fastest having been on provisional pole at various stages throughout the session. The slippery 1.27-mile track playing into the hands of Aussie who excelled in similar conditions during testing yesterday. Billy Monger also shone, at times also finding himself in P1. He will line up ninth in this afternoon’s race which gets underway at 1635.

F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford

Provisional qualifying times Knockhill 13 August 2016
Grid order for Round 19
1 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin 51.447s
2 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 51.871s
3 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden 52.664s
4 Nicolai KJAERGAARD / DEN / Fortec 52.722s
5 Frank BIRD / GBR / Fortec 53.048s
6 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin 53.223s
7 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R 53.561s
8 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec 52.415s (5 Place Grid Penalty)
9 Billy MONGER / GBR / JHR 53.627s
10 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden 56.638s etc.

Round 21 grid order (based on second-fastest times): Quinn – Caroline – Leeds – Goddard – Fielding – Monger – Florescu – Fewtrell – Martins – Pull  etc.

Full times 

 

Fielding off to a flyer at Snetterton in British F4

  • JHR’s Fielding leads the way in super-close testing at Snetterton, with the majority of the field covered by less than a second.

SNETTERTON 29 JULY, 2016 – Sennan Fielding and JHR Developments got their weekend in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford off to a flying start by topping the times in testing. A time of 1m 52.254s from Fielding in the morning session proved to be enough to see him reign supreme at the end of the day’s proceedings by over two tenths of a second.

It represents a welcome return to form for a driver whose quest for the title is in need of a shot in the arm after a frustrating outing at Croft before the summer break. The Chesterfield racer looked at ease around the Snetterton 300 circuit and on the basis of today’s performance is sure to be in the thick of the fight for top honours.

Said Fielding: “The [Ford EcoBoost] engine feels very good and the car felt extremely good which gives me a lot of confidence. I think the pace we have had today being P1 in the first session and P2 in the second session shows how consistent we are which is nice. We are quick on old and new tyres which gives us a lot of confidence for the weekend.”

Fellow championship protagonist TRS Arden’s Luis Leeds also looked very at home around the three mile circuit finishing second in the timesheets. A buoyant Leeds commented: “I haven’t been in the car for a while so it’s good to be back with Arden boys and I think we can have a good weekend.

“I like Snetterton a lot because it’s a long track and it’s really technical so it makes it more about the driver. I think this weekend is a big turning point in the season because it’s the start of the second half.”

Frequent Friday star James Pull stood out once more with the quickest time in the afternoon session ending up third fastest overall. He was just three one thousandths away from Leeds, with Jack Martin proving to be quickest of the Rookie Class drivers a mere 0.025s back.

A cautiously optimistic Pull stated: “The wind was a bit strong so that made it a bit harder to get the confidence through the high speed corners, but the car felt really good. I just need to forget about today now and try to get a good time tomorrow. Whenever we have had a good Friday we have always struggled a little bit on the Saturday. It’s going to be all about getting the optimum qualifying session because half a tenth could be worth one or two places. It’s so close.”

Both Max Fewtrell and Nicolai Kjaergaard celebrated their 17th birthdays this today and both caught the eye; Fewtrell finishing fifth and Kjaergaard narrowly missing out on a top 10 time.

Explained Kjaergaard: “The first session went alright, but on used tyres in the second session we were very close to where we want to be. We were struggling a little bit on new tyres in the second session, so we need to work on that for qualifying tomorrow. To come back strong like this after the break gives me confidence that I can score good points in all three races.”

Carlin’s Petru Florescu and Devlin DeFrancesco wound up sixth and tenth; the former just under three tenths off of Fielding’s pace and clearly in good shape for the rest of the weekend.

Ayrton Simmons and Alex Quinn both found themselves inside the top ten when the chequered flag fell; Quinn showing strong pace behind the wheel of his Racing Steps Foundation backed racer in the afternoon.

“I felt really confident in the car right from the green flag this morning,” said Quinn. “It’s been a really positive start to the second half of the season and I’m looking forward to the rest of this weekend. We had really good pace in the afternoon. Qualifying is going to be really important. I think we have shown we can do well in that tomorrow and that will make the races easier.”

TRS Arden’s Rafael Martins and JHR Developments’ Billy Monger shone on old tyre runs, both running as high as fourth in the latter half of the afternoon session.

Meanwhile Croft race winner Zane Goddard, Fortec Motorsport’s Jamie Caroline and JHR’s Jack Butel had a relatively quiet day on track. However, they are sure to strike back with a vengeance when the action hots up tomorrow.

The majority of drivers posted their quickest time of the day in the morning session with only Patrik Matthiesen (JTR), Frank Bird (Fortec Motorsports) and newcomers Marinescu (Richardson Racing) and Mohnhaupt (Falcon Motrosport) finding time in the afternoon. British F4’s newest recruits improving a by a massive 1.4s and 2s respectively.

Said Matthiesen: “We’re still struggling a little bit with the lap time, but it was definitely better in the afternoon. Top ten this weekend is a realistic target. It would be nice to get some good points. I’m enjoying driving this circuit more and more. We’re working a lot on sector three. That’s the part of the track I need to improve in.”

Added Bird: “Points are definitely the aim this weekend. The summer break came at a bad time for me really because we were just starting to hit form, but hopefully we can carry it on this weekend. Snetterton is a track I like. I was struggling a bit today, but I’m sure I will get on top of it.”

With the top 13 drivers covered by less than a second all eyes are going to be on the F4 British Championship’s bumper Saturday at Snetterton. It kicks off with qualifying at 0900 ahead of rounds 16 and 17 of the championship at 1355 and 1715 respectively. The stage will be then set for a thrilling finale which will be screened live on ITV4 at 1450 on Sunday.

F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford

Leading testing times Snetterton 29 July 2016 (am/pm)
1 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR 1:52.254 / 1:52.777
2 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden 1:52.477 / 1:53.310
3 James PULL / GBR / Carlin 1:52.480 / 1:52.592
4 Jack MARTIN / GBR / Arden 1:52.505 / 1.53.333
5 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin 1:52.524 / 1:53.323
6 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin 1:52.530 / 1:53.214
7 Ayrton SIMMONS / GBR / Arden 1:52.531 / 1:53.587
8 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 1:52.614 / 1:52.841
9 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden 1:52.835 / 1:53.504
10 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin 1:52.895 / 1:53.133 etc.

Full times

Quinn for the win in Ford MSA Formula at Donington

  • Fortec Motorsports’ Alex Quinn converts pole to maiden victory.
  • Win sees Quinn take his championship challenge up a gear and pull further clear in Rookie Cup.
  • Petru Florescu performs brilliant comeback drive to hold onto championship lead.

DONINGTON PARK 16 APRIL, 2016 – Alex Quinn pulled off a fantastic lights to flag victory in wet conditions following a hail storm at Donington Park. The Rookie driver made a perfect getaway off the line, making amends for a series of difficult starts at Brands Hatch a fortnight ago, and kept TRS Arden’s Luis Leeds and Carlin’s Max Fewtrell at bay for the duration.

Said the Racing Steps Foundation backed winner: “It feels amazing to get my first win. I couldn’t have asked for a better start to the weekend. It was quite tricky with the changeable weather, but I knew I could go quickly in the wet just like I did in the dry earlier in qualifying.

“I built a good gap to start with, but then I relaxed perhaps a little too much. I just didn’t want to make any mistakes and didn’t push too hard. This meant it got quite close at the end and I had to defend, but it was a really good race and I couldn’t be happier.”

The race was brought to a premature end with under four minutes remaining when a red flag was thrown because of Patrick Matthiesen’s stranded JTR at Coppice, denying spectators a thrilling three way fight for win. However, take nothing away from Quinn. This was a top drawer performance from a Rookie who has underlined his Ford British F4 title credentials.

Second place man Leeds commented: “It was hard to pass in the wet. The track was so slippery, but it was a fun race and I’m happy. Arden have done a great job to get a really good wet setup sorted.

“I was sizing up Quinn towards the end, but then the red flag came. That’s the way it goes sometimes and he deserved to win. It’s great to bring these points home and my aim is to maintain this consistency.”

Said Fewtrell of his third place: “It’s a really good result. The pace was so strong. I was able to match the guys in front, it’s just really hard to overtake in those sorts of conditions. If you’re on the wrong line it’s like driving on ice and when you are behind someone the spray makes it difficult to see.

“I’m happy to get another podium and this great haul of points. I’ll start on pole tomorrow in race three and I’m excited to see what I can do from there.”

Behind Fewtrell were team-mates James Pull and Devlin DeFrancesco, whilst Petru Florescu bounced back from last on the grid to sixth after a qualifying beleaguered by technical problems. His comeback drive enough to retain his championship lead by a single point over Pull.

Home favourite Sennan Fielding had a relatively quiet race in seventh, but will start on pole in race two tomorrow and look to add to his victory tally.

Finishing just behind the Chesterfield racer was Jamie Caroline who provided his customary instalment of on-track entertainment. An opening lap charge saw him climb from 15th to sixth, but he came undone at Redgate on the following lap as he took a trip through the gravel.

Fellow Ginetta Junior graduate Billy Monger was unable to follow-up his superb fourth in qualifying, but he’s sure to hit back later in the weekend, especially in drier conditions.

JHR’s Jack Butel came unstuck on lap three, having to retire due to a technical problem; whilst Zane Goddard was another non-finisher following a skirmish early on with TRS Arden’s Rafael Martins.

Round five of the season gets underway at 1005 tomorrow with home hero Sennan Fielding on pole, and Carlin’s quartet of drivers behind him on the grid hungry for more success. At 1510 the lights will go out on round six which will be shown live on ITV4, when Alex Quinn will aim to make another lightening start from the front row.

Ford British F4 – Certified by FIA, Powered by EcoBoost

Provisional results Round 4, Donington Park 16 April, 2016
11 laps / 27.77 miles
1 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 15m 14.253s / 85.57 mph
2 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +0.599s
3 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +0.790s
4 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +3.040s
5 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +13.997s
6 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin +17.239s
7 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +17.849
8 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Jamun +21.106s
9 Billy MONGER / GBR / JHR +25.536s
10 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +26.320s etc
Fastest lap Pull 1:20.947 / 88.01 mph
Rookie Class 1 Quinn; 2 R Martin; 3 J Martin; 4 Kjaergaard

Full results

Provisional championship standings
1 Florescu 58; 2 Pull 57; 3 Leeds 50; 4 Fewtrell 49; 5 Quinn 45; 6 Fielding 41; 7 Caroline 30; 8 Martins 29; 9 Goddard 18; 10 DeFrancesco 17 etc
Rookie Class 1 Quinn 100; Kjaergaard 60; J Martin 57; R Martin 51

Super-quick Quinn takes Ford MSA Formula pole at Donington

DONINGTON PARK 16 APRIL 2016 – Rookie Alex Quinn put in a barnstorming performance at Donington Park to take his maiden Ford EcoBoost-powered pole for Fortec Motorsports and fly the flag for the Racing Steps Foundation.

Quinn’s time of 1:08.012 came with four minutes of the session remaining and at the time put him over half a second clear of the field, as drivers endeavoured to get their Hankook slicks up to temperature around the chilly Leicestershire circuit.

Said the pole sitter: “The team did well to get a good setup and all I had to do was optimise my lap. I knew the times would come at the end and what I was capable of. We timed everything perfectly and got the maximum out of the tyres.

“I didn’t know I was over five tenths up on the field. The team didn’t tell me because they wanted me to keep pushing. I’m just so happy with this qualifying result.”

Added Fortec Motorsports team manager Dan Mitchell: “We woke up this morning and the conditions were exactly what we wanted. Alex did the job and it’s a great team effort. Frank Bird is 11th and Ross Martin fifth. The team has come a long way since Brands.”

Quinn’s closest challengers proved to be Red Bull Junior Luis Leeds, Carlin’s Max Fewtrell, JHR’s Billy Monger and team-mate Ross Martin. Leeds saved his best for the very end of the session, climbing from 13th to second with 30 seconds remaining and at one point looked set to steal pole following a the fastest first sector on his final flyer.

Said Leeds: “It was an up and down session, but I got the lap together when it mattered at the end. I didn’t warm the tyres properly and I struggled with oversteer. I’ve never driven around a track this cold, so it’s all learning really.”

Max Fewtrell was also pleased with his morning’s work: “The time came quite late as the track was getting better. It was so cold out there. It took about four laps to get tyres working. I’m happy with third in race one and the consistency of my laps means pole for round six.”

After a difficult pre-race test Billy Monger was back with a vengeance in qualifying, consistently fighting at the top of the times. A fourth place grid slot in round four and third in round six a just reward for a driver rapidly getting to grips with his Ford EcoBoost racer.

Monger enthused: “Today was a big step in the right direction and I think there is more to come. It’s all a learning process. I’m making little steps each weekend, trying to get further up the grid. After the great test we had at Thruxton we’ve proved that it wasn’t a fluke. We’re here to be at the front and win trophies.”

Aside from Fewtrell, Carlin’s drivers struggled to show their full potential, with pre-race test pacesetter James Pull having to settle for sixth and Devlin DeFrancesco seventh. Championship leader Petru Florescu suffered an incredibly frustrating session hampered by technical problems which means he will line up at the back of the grid.

Qualifying also promised so much for Jamun’s Jamie Caroline who was disputing for top spot early on; only to fall foul of track limit violations and an off later in the session.

Home hero Sennan Fielding qualified eighth for JHR and will look to battle up the order this afternoon, as will TRS Arden’s Jack Martin and Rafael Martins.

Lights will go out for round four of the Ford British F4 season at 1500 this afternoon. With the majority of the field covered by just a second so many drivers are in with a chance  of the podium places.
Provisional qualifying top 10 Donington Park 16 April, 2016
Grid order round 4:
1 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec 1:08.012
2 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden 1:08.116
3 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin 1:08.175
4 Billy MONGER / GBR / JHR 1:08.212
5 Ross MARTIN / GBR / Fortec 1:08.355
6 James PULL / GBR / Carlin 1:08.405
7 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin 1:08.442
8 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR 1:08.566
9 Jack MARTIN / GBR / Arden 1:08.631
10 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden 1:08.808
Round 6 grid order (based on second fastest times)
Fewtrell – Quinn – Monger – Leeds – R Martin – Fielding – DeFrancesco – J Martin – Pull – Martins

 

Full times