BRDC Formula 4 2015 - Silverstone
Having won the opening encounter of the duo BRDC Formula 4 season at Oulton Park in early April, Comma-sponsored Will Palmer put a rocky Rockingham behind him and bagged a sack-full of points to re-take the lead of the championship at Silverstone over the weekend of May 30/31. Commanding lights-to-flag victories from pole position in Races 1 and 3 book-ended a fourth place finish from eighth on the grid in Race 2 to earn the eighteen year old from Southwater in West Sussex a whopping 88 points (just 7 shy of a theoretical 3-race maximum) for his enterprising efforts, and a twelve point championship lead – 193 to 181 - over Silverstone's other race winner, Rodrigo Fonseca of Mexico.
Ciaran Heggarty for Ecurie Ecosse/GBR and SWR's Jordan Albert claimed the other podium positions in Saturday's Race 1 after Palmer's HHC team-mate and fellow front row starter Harri Newey failed to complete the distance following a mid-race incident. Fonseca retired in the pits with rear end damage to his car. Some nineteen seconds behind the winner, Tom Jackson was fourth for Chris Dittman Racing with Sisa Ngebulana fifth for HHC. Jack Bartholomew (Lanan) newcomer Omar Ismail (Chris Dittman) Hernan Fallas (Mark Godwin Racing) Fernando Urrutia (Douglas Motorsport) and Zubair Hoque (SWR) rounded out the top ten points scorers.
Fonseca's victory for Lanan Racing in Race 2 on Sunday was remarkable for having been accomplished from fifteenth on the grid. On a damp track, the Mexican had forged his way impressively into contention by mid race and eventually relieved Ngebulana of the lead to win by 3.5 seconds. Tom Jackson improved on his Race 1 fourth place finish to claim the other podium honours, just holding off Palmer who finished fourth from his eighth position start on the (Race 1) reverse order grid. Fifth place went to Albert and sixth to Newey, with Urrutia, Bartholomew, Riki Christodoulou (Hillspeed) and Michael O'Brien (Mark Godwin Racing) completing the top ten.
Fastest race lap of the weekend so far earned Palmer pole position for Race 3, from which Comma's driver swept to an unchallenged 8 second victory over his HHC team-mate Newey, with Fonseca returning to the podium once again in third place. Albert concluded an admirably consistent weekend in fourth place, with Haggerty also showing good form in fifth spot. Lanan Racing's Manxman Chris Mealin - the interim championship leader following the second round of races at Rockingham – recovered from a lowly sixteenth place in Race 1 and a DNF in Race 2 to claim sixth, with Akhil Rabindra of India (Douglas Motor Sport) seventh, South Africa's Sebastian Lanzetti (Hillspeed) eighth, Jackson ninth and Urrutia tenth.
In the championship, Mealin slips to third behind Palmer and Fonseca, with Jackson fourth and knocking on the door of a first race victory, and Albert - with a win at Oulton Park under his belt – fifth. 100 points separate the leader and tenth place man O'Brien, the winner of Race 2 at Rockingham, while Bartholomew, Newey, Haggerty and Hoque in sixth to ninth places respectively all show the potential to register their first wins of the season.
Comma is Technical Partner to BRDC Formula 4, and in addition to sponsoring Will Palmer in the 24 race series, supplies Comma brand lubricants, coolants and maintenance chemicals to all teams competing in the championship. Visit the excellent BRDC Formula 4 website at www.formula4.com to keep up with full results, race reports, information and features about the championship. Visit the excellent BRDC Formula 4 website at www.formula4.com to keep up with full results, race reports, information and features about the championship.