Fortec Motorsports’ Mika Abrahams set the pace on British Formula 4’s in-season test day on Donington Park’s Grand Prix layout.
The season opener took place on the National configuration of the track, and the longer GP layout will be used when the series races there again in August.
Absent from the Wednesday test were Fortec’s Aiden Neate, who also missed the most recent round at Silverstone last month, and Virtuosi Racing’s Aqil Alibhai.
There will still 20 cars on track though as three unsigned drivers joined the action. Chris Dittmann Racing ran Reza Seewooruthun, who races in Ginetta Junior and currently sits third in the standings, JHR Developments entered Ella Lloyd from the higher level Ginetta GT Championship where she is second in the GT5 Pro classification and Argenti Motorsport fielded Alvise Rodella.
The Italian racer started his single-seater career this year in the F4-spec Formula Winter Series, coming 12th in the standings, and his primary programme since then has been with MP Motorsport in Spanish F4. He sits 17th in the standings there, and will make his Italian F4 debut this weekend at Paul Ricard with the BVM Racing team.
Virtuosi’s Douwe Dedecker was first to set a laptime in the British F4 test, but it was not until over half an hour had passed in the three-hour morning session that something approaching a representative laptime was recorded.
Rodin Carlin’s Louis Sharp was first into the 1m31s, and a few minutes later James Higgins brought the pace down into the 1m30s. He spent two minutes in first place before team-mate Abrahams set a 1m29.937s, then Sharp with three consecutive improvements knocked 0.694 seconds off his benchmark.
There was then a long period of track inactivity, and when cars eventually returned to track Sharp improved again. Abrahams was first into the 1m28s with 35 minutes to go, and Higgins responded by going even faster. But Abrahams reclaimed top spot again in the final 10 minutes, improving three times and ending the session with a 1m28.006s.
The pace was faster for 13 of the drivers in the afternoon session, which was slightly longer. Abrahams was among those who did not improve, but did not having his morning benchmark beaten.
Argenti’s Isaac Barashi was the early pacesetter and lapped in the 1m29s, then JHR’s Deagen Fairclough set several new benchmarks but could not quite break into the 1m28s.
Hitech GP’s William Macintyre was first to, and later Abrahams set a 1m28.758s to go top. There was then long spells of drivers staying in the pits, with the last two hours featuring only four more improvements to the pace. Higgins set the fastest lap, a 1m28.242s, with nine minutes left on the clock.
|1||Mika Abrahams||Fortec Motorsports||1m28.006s||96|
|2||James Higgins||Fortec Motorsports||1m28.242s||+0.236s||83|
|4||William Macintyre||Hitech GP||1m28.415s||+0.409s||68|
|5||James Piszcyk||Hitech GP||1m28.693s||+0.687s||69|
|6||Gabriel Stilp||Hitech GP||1m28.699s||+0.693s||72|
|9||Deagen Fairclough||JHR Developments||1m28.867s||+0.861s||98|
|10||Douwe Dedecker||Virtuosi Racing||1m28.884s||+0.878s||93|
|12||Reza Seewooruthun||Chris Dittmann Racing||1m29.020s||+1.014s||107|
|13||Patrick Heuzenroeder||Argenti Motorsport||1m29.036s||+1.030s||96|
|14||Kanato Le||Hitech GP||1m29.042s||+1.036s||64|
|15||Jack Sherwood||Chris Dittmann Racing||1m29.118s||+1.112s||85|
|16||Sonny Smith||JHR Developments||1m29.157s||+1.151s||89|
|17||Kai Daryanani||Virtuosi Racing||1m29.521s||+1.515s||99|
|18||Alvise Rodella||Argenti Motorsport||1m29.601s||+1.595s||111|
|19||Isaac Barashi||Argenti Motorsport||1m29.617s||+1.611s||87|
|20||Ella Lloyd||JHR Developments||1m30.155s||+2.149s||72|