Supplied by team’s PR.
• British F4 racer Linus Lundqvist takes two supreme victories.
• Double R driver rapid in both wet and dry conditions at Croft.
• Karl Massaad close to podium return in last race of F4 weekend.
12 JUNE, 2017 – Rapid F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost driver Linus Lundqvist delivered a series of star performances at Croft in North Yorkshire over the weekend, 10th/11th June, securing two magnificent victories for Double R Racing in rounds 13 and 15.
At a track where the Woking team has always had an excellent set-up in any formula, Lundqvist backed up his timesheet-topping efforts in testing with pole position for the first and third races and he converted both into superb wins – moving the Swede into third in the championship.
Lebanese team-mate Karl Massaad only just missed out on a podium return in the final encounter of the weekend, taking a best finish of fourth place, while Chinese racer Daniel Cao took his only finish in race three after two unfortunate retirements in the opening two contests.
“It’s fantastic for Linus to take two wins”, said Double R team principal Anthony ‘Boyo’ Hieatt. “Our set-up for Croft has always been good, we always have a great car there, so we take great delight in doing so well this weekend – Linus was the pace-setter throughout and did an outstanding job.
“Karl had a terrific recovery in the third race after an unfortunate collision in the second one, he raced very strongly and to be in the fight with the podium contenders was fantastic and where we know he can be on a regular basis. It wasn’t the strongest weekend of the season for Daniel but, overall, we’re delighted with the team performance.”
Lundqvist certainly started the Croft weekend as he intended to go on, lapping fastest in pre-event testing and then going on to set the quickest and second quickest laps in a highly competitive, rain-hit qualifying session on Saturday to secure pole position for the first and third races of the event.
Continuing drizzle into the afternoon meant Round 13, would also take place on a wet track and Lundqvist made an outstanding start. Storming into a lead of two seconds on lap one alone, racing then fell under Safety Car conditions due to an unfortunate incident for team-mate Massaad who was pitched into a spin at Tower Bend, having started sixth. He retired with damage soon after.
At the resumption on lap five Lundqvist made a textbook re-start and went on to control the race from the front, reeling off a series of fastest laps – a best of 1m 30.761s – before taking the flag on lap 12 an incredible 6.7 seconds clear. Team-mate Cao, meanwhile, experienced misfortune like Massaad after an excursion when the Safety Car was on track, while running in the top 10.
Starting the dry 14th round on Sunday from sixth on the partially reversed grid, Lundqvist got away from the line cleanly and managed to climb into fifth on the opening tour. Massaad and Cao started the contest from 13th and 15th respectively but the latter’s race came to an early conclusion in the gravel at the first corner – triggering the deployment of the Safety Car.
Racing resumed on lap four and Lundqvist quickly moved up into the top four before challenging for the podium. After running wide at Tower on lap six, he was edged back to sixth and then seventh soon after but battled back into fourth before the race was red flagged on lap 12 when Massaad was involved in a tangle at Tower while battling inside the top 10.
Normal service was resumed for Lundqvist in round 15 as he again dominated, opening up a one second lead from pole position at the start and going on to take the chequered flag on lap 15 almost six seconds clear with a phenomenal drive. He also posted the fastest lap by some margin, a time of 1m 21.444s (93.93mph).
Massaad made amends for his earlier disappointment with a great drive to fourth, his second best result of the season. Starting fifth on the grid after a strong run in qualifying, he moved into fourth on lap five and was just 1.4 seconds shy of the podium at the chequered flag – he also set the third fastest race lap. Cao, meanwhile, started 11th on the grid and went on to finish in 15th position.
British F4 now enters a summer break with the next rounds at Snetterton on 29th/30th July.
F4 British Championship standings
3rd Linus Lundqvist, 152.5pts; 10th Karl Massaad, 46pts; 14th Daniel Cao, 7pts