BRDC Formula 4 - The season opener at Silverstone
George Russell claimed the early lead in the 2014 championship when he became only the second driver ever to win two BRDC Formula 4 races in the same weekend. Driving for the Lanan Racing outfit who had guided Jake Hughes to the inaugural BRDC Formula 4 championship in 2013, the 16 year old Russell – a multiple kart racing champion from Wisbech in Cambridgeshire – finished fifth from fourth place on the grid in the season opener on the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit on Saturday, April 26th, and converted a similar starting place in Sunday's first race to his maiden single-seater victory with an impressive front running display. An equally convincing win from sixth place on the grid in the weekend's final encounter took his Silverstone points tally to an impressive 79, a new record for a single BRDC Formula 4 meeting.
Russell, the youngest driver in this year's international line-up of F4 drivers, thus takes a 13 point lead over Douglas Motorsport's Diego Menchaca into the next triple-header on the Grand Prix circuit at Brands Hatch on the weekend of May 17/18th. The Mexican made a solid points scoring start to his campaign with a combative second place by just half a second in Race 1, eighth in Race 2 and third in Race 3.
South Africa's Raoul Hyman got his and HHC Motorsport's season off to a winning start with victory in the first race on Saturday, and kept his points tally ticking over with fourth place in Race 2 and tenth in Race 3. He trails Menchaca in the championship – which rewards the eventual winner with a full test drive in a GP3 car for the reigning champions, Arden Motorsport – by just 2 points, and is 12 ahead of Lanan Racing's Arjun Maini from India, who took second place in the final race of the weekend to add to his eighth and eleventh place finishes respectively in the first two races.
Cheered on at Silverstone by his Comma sponsored and GP2-winning elder brother Jolyon, Will Palmer is also carrying Comma's colours on his HHC Motorsport's entered car in this year's BRDC Formula 4 contest. Having recorded his first ever single-seater win at Brands Hatch in the F4 Winter series, 17 year old Will showed that he has what it takes to mix it with the front runners in the major series with a solid start to his campaign, which included the fastest race lap in the tricky Race 2 conditions. Seventh place in Race 1 on Saturday was followed by a brace of sixth places on Sunday, rewarding Will with 47 points and fifth in the championship to carry forward to Brands Hatch.
Brazil's Gustavo Lima put Hillspeed in the early season BRDC Formula 4 frame with sound top ten performances of sixth, fifth and ninth in the three Silverstone races. Sixth in the championship, he has a 2 point lead over Denmark's Nicolas Beer who made a very racy start to his campaign for Sean Walkinshaw Racing with fourth place in Race 1 and second in Race 2. Lanan Racing's Struan Moore failed to complete the opening lap in Saturday's race, but bounced back to finish third in Race 2 and fifth in Race 3 on Sunday. In eighth championship spot on 39 points, he has a 4 point lead over fellow Brits Chris Middlehurst for Mark Godwin Racing and Senna Fielding for HHC Racing who round out the top ten on the championship chart.
Comma is Technical Partner to BRDC Formula 4, and in addition to sponsoring Will Palmer in the 24 race series, supplies Comma brand lubricants to all teams competing in the championship. All rounds of the BRDC F4 Championship are broadcast free-to-air on ITV 4 in an hour-long standalone show screened one week after each of the eight events in a prime-time Sunday evening slot. Coverage on ITV4 will also include a further weekday evening repeat.
For live race reports, championship details, driver interviews, news and inside information on the championship, teams and drivers, visit the BRDC Formula 4 website at www.formula4.com