Home Formula 4British F4 Fairclough takes first British F4 win in Knockhill reverse race

Fairclough takes first British F4 win in Knockhill reverse race

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Deagen Fairclough took his first British Formula 4 win in the second race of the weekend at Knockhill as the championship contenders ran into problems. 

Multiple drivers suffered front wing damage during the reversed-grid race and were forced to pit. Among them were championship contenders Will Macintyre and Louis Sharp. 

Fairclough – who lost a win at Brands Hatch earlier this season to a penalty – got a good start from second on the grid and was immediately challenging pole sitter Douwe Dedecker for the race lead. Before the end of the first lap, the JHR Developments driver had taken the lead with a move around the outside. 

Racing was paused as Kenato Le came to a stop in the gravel. He was able to get out unaided, but had already brought out the safety car, bringing Dedecker back onto Fairclough’s tail. 

Dedecker was unable to challenge Faircough on the restart and came under pressure from James Higgins behind. A trip through the gravel then cost the pole sitter five seconds and he dropped down to fifth. 

By this point, Fairclough’s lead at the front of the order was more than 2.5s. Higgins was unable to keep pace with Fairclough, and the race lead extended to 4.329s by the chequered flag. 

James Piszyck took the final step of the podium in third ahead of Gabriel Stilp, who enjoyed a strong charge up through the order.  

Dedecker dropped back to fifth by the chequered flag but managed to stay ahead of Jack Sherwood and Josh Irfan. 

Kai Daryanani, Patrick Heuzenroeder and Le completed the top 10. 

Though there didn’t appear to be any major incidents, at least five drivers had to come into the pits with problems at various points of the race. 

Macinytre was the first to come into the pits. He had climbed up to 14th, but dropped to the back of the field with a nose change. Noah Lisle followed him into the pits not long after.  

Dion Gowda already had front wing damage at this point, but tried to stay out in his wounded car. However, he was called into the pits after a black and orange flag towards the end of the race, as was team-mate Sharp. Gowda then had to pit again with another mechanical issue.  Gustav Jonsson was also hit with a trip through the pits. 

Of the pitters, Sharp was the highest placed, finishing one position higher than his starting position when he came home 15th.

Sharp was handed the race one win on Saturday evening after Macintyre was given a penalty for crossing the pit-exit line – but this was later rescinded and Macintyre was reinstated as victor once more.

Race result (24 laps)
Pos Driver Team Time
1 Deagen Fairclough JHR Developments 20m38.809s
2 James Higgins Fortec Motorsports +4.329s
3 James Piszcyk Hitech +4.846s
4 Gabriel Stilp Hitech +6.950s
5 Douwe Dedecker Virtuosi Racing +14.755s
6 Jack Sherwood Chris Dittmann Racing +16.074s
7 Josh Irfan Rodin Carlin +18.912s
8 Kai Daryanani Virtuosi Racing +21.113s
9 Patrick Heuzenroeder Argenti +21.222s
10 Kanato Le Hitech +25.754s
11 Aqil Alibhai Virtuosi Racing +28.129s
12 Isaac Barashi Argenti +31.803s
13 Griffin Peebles Argenti +32.120s
14 Mika Abrahams Fortec Motorsports +34.215s
15 Louis Sharp Rodin Carlin +1 lap
16 Pontus Jonsson Chris Dittmann Racing +1 lap
17 Will Macintyre Hitech +1 lap
18 Noah Lisle Rodin Carlin +1 lap
Ret Dion Gowda Rodin Carlin
Fastest lap: Macintyre, 48.216s

Championship standings
1 Macintyre 270   2 Sharp 256   3 Fairclough 197   4 Gowda 184   5 Piszcyk 172   6 Higgins 164   7 Le 158   8 Lisle 133   9 Alibhhai 112   10 Stilp 106