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Australian Formula 4 championship to be relaunched next year

by Ida Wood

The Australian Formula 4 championship is to be revived in 2024, four years on from its demise.

Launched in 2015, the series ran for five years with first-generation F4 cars and raced at 12 different circuits in Australia and at New Zealand’s Pukekohe track in 2018. New promoter Top Speed’s plan to revive Australian F4 is to take it further abroad.

It was not the COVID-19 pandemic that led to the 2020 season being cancelled, as the organiser Motorsport Australia made the decision to can the championship in September 2019 due to a lack of interest. That year F4 had a support slot at the Australian Grand Prix for the first time, and attracted 18 drivers. No other rounds featured more than eight cars.

Ian Richards, who was boss of Australian Formula 3 (now Australian Formula Open), called for an independent investigation into the demise of the series and Motorsport Australia when the news came that Australian F4 would be no more.

The China-based Top Speed organisation already promotes the South East Asia and United Arab Emirates F4 championships, as well as Formula Regional Middle East, and has organised a five-round calendar for Australian F4’s return.

Each round will consist of three races, and the 2024 season opener will take place at The Bend Motorsport Park on May 4/5. Drivers will return to the circuit for round two on June 8/9, then head to Queensland Raceway on July 13/14 for round three.

The comeback season concludes with rounds at Sydney Motorsport Park (August 3/4) and Sepang in Malaysia (September 7/8). Like many other F4 series, the second-generation Tatuus T-421 car will be used.

“We are excited to bring F4 back to Australia and assist young talent in the country to take the next step and earn important FIA superlicense points,” said Top Speed’s general manager Davide de Gobbi.

“To have four rounds in Australia and an international season finale will give teams and drivers the best of both worlds.

“We believe F4 Australia will provide an excellent platform for young drivers from the region to showcase their talent and develop their skills. Motorsport Australia has approved the reintroduction of the category and we will work collaboratively to ensure F4 has a strong future in Australia.”

All-time Australian F4 statistics
Starts Wins Poles Fastest laps Podiums
R Suhle 59 J Ojeda 15 Rowe 11 Ojeda 17 Suhle 35
N Rowe 51 J Lloyd 12 Suhle 10 Rowe 15 Rowe 34
L Leeds 45 Rowe 10 Randle 8 Lloyd 11 Leeds 25
A Love 42 Leeds 10 Leeds 8 Leeds 9 Shields 23
T Everingham 39 T Randle 7 Shields 6 Shields 7 Brown 20
H Hayek 39 Brown 7 Ojeda 6 Suhle 7 Lloyd 18
W Brown 38 Suhle 7 Lloyd 5 Brown 5 Ojeda 18
L Hughes 38 C Shields 6 Brown 5 Randle 5 A Love 16
J Walls 38 L Lawson 5 Hayek 2 Hayek 5 Randle 15
S Fallon 36 J Love 4 J Love 2 J Denton 4 Hayek 14