Zagazeta’s charge gathers momentum with double Silverstone pole

Matias Zagazeta took another crucial step to cementing his lead out front in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost with an impressive double pole position at Silverstone.

The Peruvian came under fire from his ever-improving team-mate Aiden Neate in the closing stages, the latter fresh from his maiden podium in Britain’s FIA Formula 4 series at Croft last weekend.

Neate set a personal best, then a session best in the first two sectors on his final tour around the 1.6-mile Northamptonshire circuit, but traffic on the run from Brooklands up to the chequered flag meant he would not improve, leaving Zagazeta’s benchmark of 56.090 at the top of the timesheets by 0.027s. Zagazeta also had the best second-fastest time, netting him pole for the ITV4-televised finale.

It still represents a career-best qualifying result for the 15-year-old Neate, who completes an all Phinsys by Argenti front row for the first and third races of the weekend.

Zagazeta’s nearest rival at the championship summit, JHR Developments’ Matthew Rees, led earlier in the session but slipped to third late on. He will head up the second row alongside his team-mate McKenzy Cresswell, the latter aiming to build on a brace of victories in Yorkshire last time out from fourth.

Marcos Flack (Argenti) enjoyed an equal season-best result of fifth, and with Eduardo Coseteng in ninth, Michael Meadows’ outfit can celebrate getting all four challengers inside the top ten.

Separating the pair were Fortec Motorsport team-mates Joel Granfors and Oliver Gray, with JHR’s Joseph Loake sandwiched between the two in seventh spot.

Eight cars across two teams rounded out the 17-car field thereafter; Kai Askey led the Carlin quartet, with Tasanapol Inthraphuvasak, James Hedley and Dougie Bolger for close company in 11th, 12th and 13th.

Behind them were Arden Motorsport’s Red Arrows, with Zak Taylor leading David Morales, Georgi Dimitrov and the latest newcomer to the category, Cameron McLeod. The Australian – making his debut this weekend – will start up front for the reverse grid race on Sunday morning.

Racing action begins with the opening 20-minute contest at 16:10 (BST) this afternoon.

Session Result – Qualifying:

Pos. Name Team Time
1 Matias ZAGAZETA Phinsys by Argenti 56.090s
2 Aiden NEATE Phinsys by Argenti +0.027s
3 Matthew REES JHR Developments +0.051s
4 McKenzy CRESSWELL JHR Developments +0.102s
5 Marcos FLACK Phinsys by Argenti +0.173s
6 Joel GRANFORS Fortec Motorsport +0.200s
7 Joseph LOAKE JHR Developments +0.230s
8 Oliver GRAY Fortec Motorsport +0.252s
9 Eduardo COSETENG Phinsys by Argenti +0.279s
10 Kai ASKEY Carlin +0.352s
11 Tasanapol INTHRAPHUVASAK Carlin +0.357s
12 James HEDLEY Carlin +0.357s
13 Dougie BOLGER Carlin +0.418s
14 Zak TAYLOR Arden Motorsport +0.445s
15 David MORALES Arden Motorsport +0.522s
16 Georgi DIMITROV Arden Motorsport +0.541s
17 Cameron McLEOD Arden Motorsport +0.709s