Alex Dunne recovered from a grid penalty to dominate the second race of the Italian Formula 4 season at Imola in a US Racing one-two.
Dunne had qualified on pole position in the wet-dry second qualifying session on Saturday morning but was adjudged to have not respected yellow flags and was given a five-place grid penalty.
That put rookie Frederik Lund onto pole position after his R-ace GP team rebuilt his car following a sizeable crash in race one, but he made a slow getaway and Iron Lynx driver Ivan Domingues raced into the lead from the outside of the front row ahead of AKM Motorsport’s Pedro Clerot.
The US duo of Kacper Sztuka and Dunne moved up to third and fourth from the third row of the grid, then went either side of Clerot under braking into Rivazza, with Dunne emerging in second place.
Dunne quickly demolished the two-second advantage built up by Domingues and took the lead on the way into Tamburello for the fourth time.
Sztuka pulled the same move two laps later but couldn’t prevent Dunne from building up a five-second lead out front. That was until the safety car was deployed with seven minutes left on the clock after Arias Deukmedjian came together with Marcos Flack at Rivazza and got buried in the gravel trap.
The race restarted with time for two final laps and although Dunne’s initial restart was good, he went deep in Tamburello which meant Sztuka was all over him on the way to Villeneuve. Dunne held on though to take what is already his fifth F4 win of 2022 after successes in the United Arab Emirates and in Britain.
Second is by far Sztuka’s best F4 result – he didn’t even score a point as a rookie in 2021 – and there was a chance of a US Racing podium lockout on the final lap after an excellent restart from Marcus Amand.
That took him from sixth to fourth and onto the tail of James Wharton, who had to go defensive but was able to hold on to third after starting 10th, the Ferrari junior salvaging something for Prema after its gamble on slick tyres backfired in Q2.
After losing a likely win in race one, Andrea Kimi Antonelli again failed to score having had to pit for a new front wing on lap two – just as team-mate Conrad Laursen had done after the opening tour.
Race one winner Rafael Camara came from 31st on the grid after engine trouble in Q2 to finish eighth behind Martinius Stenshorne, Maya Weug and Domingues.
Race result (17 laps)
|1||Alex Dunne||US Racing||32m50.042s|
|2||Kacper Sztuka||US Racing||+1.441s|
|3||James Wharton||Prema Racing||+3.695s|
|4||Marcus Amand||US Racing||+4.187s|
|5||Martinius Stenshorne||Van Amersfoort Racing||+5.050s|
|6||Maya Weug||Iron Dames||+5.643s|
|7||Ivan Domingues||Iron Lynx||+6.197s|
|8||Rafael Camara||Prema Racing||+6.684s|
|9||Nikita Bedrin||PHM Racing||+6.782s|
|10||Taylor Barnard||PHM Racing||+6.957s|
|11||Pedro Clerot||AKM Motorsport||+7.339s|
|12||Alfio Spina||BWR Motorsport||+7.600s|
|13||Frederik Lund||R-ace GP||+8.239s|
|14||Jonas Ried||PHM Racing||+8.778s|
|15||Nikhil Bohra||US Racing||+9.194s|
|16||Charlie Wurz||Prema Racing||+9.642s|
|17||Elia Sperandio||Maffi Racing||+11.170s|
|18||Pedro Perino||US Racing||+11.951s|
|19||Emerson Fittipaldi Jr||Van Amersfoort Racing||+12.316s|
|20||Ricardo Escotto||Cram Motorsport||+12.666s|
|21||Marcos Flack||R-ace GP||+12.708s|
|22||Ethan Ischer||Jenzer Motorsport||+13.143s|
|23||Andrea Frassineti||Cars Racing||+13.790s|
|24||Andrea Kimi Antonelli||Prema Racing||+14.501s|
|25||Conrad Laursen||Prema Racing||+15.561s|
|26||Alex Partyshev||Jenzer Motorsport||+16.100s|
|27||Rishab Jain||BWR Motorsport||+20.821s|
|28||Ismail Akhmed||AKM Motorsport||+24.373s|
|29||Giovanni Maschio||AS Motorsport||+24.451s|
|Ret||Viktoria Blokhina||PHM Racing||+3 laps|
|Ret||Jules Castro||Van Amersfoort Racing||+3 laps|
|Ret||Arias Deukmedjian||Van Amersfoort Racing||+6 laps|
|Ret||Brando Badoer||Van Amersfoort Racing||+6 laps|
|Fastest lap: Antonelli 1m45.739s