Zak O’Sullivan hails ‘great experience’ after strong scholarship showing

Zak O’Sullivan underlined his happiness after a strong showing at the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost’s inaugural Scholarship Day at Silverstone.

The 2019 Ginetta Junior vice-champion ran with serial title winners Carlin for the day and clocked the fourth fastest time around a wet 1.6-mile National circuit at Silverstone, his time of 1:02.076 seconds just three tenths adrift of pacesetter James Hedley (JHR).

Though the prizes ultimately went the way of Casper Stevenson and O’Sullivan’s team mate for the day, Matias Zagazeta, the Brit hailed the ‘great experience’ and the opportunity to familiarise himself with the ‘Home of British Motorsport’ in a single-seater.

“It was a great experience! Useful to have so much wet running and of course familiarising myself with one of the circuits the championship races at regularly,” explained O’Sullivan.

“Being able to drive with other single-seaters around was also a first for me too.”

As well as on-circuit performance, candidates were also judged through media assessments and an interview with championship staff; O’Sullivan repeated his belief that the experience will stand him in good stead for the future.

“The interviews were quite fun actually,” he said.

“There were a few curveballs in there but I think they went well anyway! It’s useful to start thinking about some of the questions I might be asked in the future.”

He paid tribute to Carlin’s efforts on the day, with O’Sullivan particularly impressed by the level of preparation and attention to detail in searching for extra performance.

“Carlin are second to none, I think. It was good to see how they operate, going through all the data and details in debriefs, making changes to the car and so on. My experience with RRacing in Ginettas definitely helped as the process was quite similar back then.”

On a final note, O’Sullivan paid tribute to Stevenson and Zagazeta’s performances on the day.

“Casper did really well, he was quite fast all day. There was something like half a tenth [of a second] in it so very close. And of course Matias improved massively throughout the day too. It was good to get to know him as we were teammates for the day. Well done to both of them, well-deserved winners.”