Home Formula 4Italian F4 Montoya tops Paul Ricard test day one, Zanfari joins Italian F4 grid

Montoya tops Paul Ricard test day one, Zanfari joins Italian F4 grid

by Ida Wood

A private test at Paul Ricard for Formula 4 teams got underway on Thursday, attracting 40 cars and breaking news.

The first news was the announcement that Moroccan Suleiman Zanfari would join Cram Motorsport part-time in Italian F4 alongside his Spanish championship campaign.

Paul Ricard is where the Italian F4 begins on May 14-16, and many used the test to formalise deals with teams for the season.

Next to reveal their Italian F4 participation was R-ace GP’s Sami Meguetounif, already confirmed to do ADAC F4, and his team-mate Victor Bernier will also be racing at Paul Ricard.

Eron Rexhepi then finally had his deal with BVM Racing confirmed, with the same going for Kacper Sztuka at AS Motorsport although it’s unclear if Sztuka will do the full season.

The test began with Prema’s Kirill Smal setting the pace in the first of four sessions, setting a 2m04.856s that put him 0.354 seconds clear of Iron Lynx’s Leonardo Fornaroli.

Sauber’s 14-year-old junior driver Christian Ho was in action for AKM Motorsport, while Spanish F4 racer Alex Partyshev was out with R-ace in place of British F4-bound Marcos Flack.

Sebastian Montoya (Prema) set the day’s fastest lap in session two, 0.049s faster than Bernier who had been 39th fastest out of 40 drivers in session one, and the top 18 drivers were covered by a second.

Partyshev, US Racing’s Tim Tramnitz and Jenzer Motorsport’s Samir Ben failed to improve on their session one times, with the latter two revealed to be joining Italian F4 for the first round.

Fornaroli improved in ninth place overall by topping the first afternoon session, as Tramnitz leapt up the order and Ben also bettered his session one best. The only others to improve were Sztuka and Cram’s Vittorio Catino.

Smal returned to the top in the final session by a tenth over Fornaroli, and this time the top 22 were spread by one second. Bence Valint (Van Amersfoort Racing), Jonas Ried (Mucke Motorsport), Pedro Perino (DR Formula) and Ben all got faster.

Test results

Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Sebastian Montoya Prema 2m04.284s 70
2 Victor Bernier R-ace GP 2m04.333s +0.049s 68
3 Ollie Bearman Van Amersfoort Racing 2m04.458s +0.174s 75
4 Kirill Smal Prema 2m04.522s +0.238s 68
5 Luke Browning US Racing 2m04.545s +0.261s 74
6 Sami Meguetounif R-ace GP 2m04.551s +0.267s 76
7 Joshua Dufek Van Amersfoort Racing 2m04.637s +0.353s 55
8 Francesco Braschi Jenzer Motorsport 2m04.689s +0.405s 69
9 Leonardo Fornaroli Iron Lynx 2m04.762s +0.478s 71
10 Suleiman Zanfari Cram Motorsport 2m04.858s +0.574s 53
11 Conrad Laursen Prema 2m04.885s +0.601s 57
12 Hamda Al Qubaisi Prema 2m04.896s +0.612s 70
13 Joshua Duerksen Mucke Motorsport 2m04.914s +0.630s 69
14 Santiago Ramos Jenzer Motorsport 2m04.964s +0.680s 65
15 Charlie Wurz Prema 2m05.028s +0.744s 68
16 Francesco Simonazzi BVM Racing 2m05.040s +0.756s 72
17 Lorenzo Patrese AKM Motorsport 2m05.108s +0.824s 64
18 Tim Tramnitz US Racing 2m05.162s +0.878s 55
19 Vlad Lomko US Racing 2m05.197s +0.913s 70
20 Kacper Sztuka AS Motorsport 2m05.252s +0.968s 77
21 Erick Zuniga Mucke Motorsport 2m05.356s +1.072s 74
22 Cenyu Han Van Amersfoort Racing 2m05.367s +1.083s 72
23 Nikita Bedrin Van Amersfoort Racing 2m05.489s +1.205s 75
24 Maya Weug Iron Lynx 2m05.493s +1.209s 62
25 Jonas Ried Mucke Motorsport 2m05.535s +1.251s 64
26 Alex Partyshev R-ace GP 2m05.557s +1.273s 65
27 Bence Valint Van Amersfoort Racing 2m05.567s +1.283s 70
28 Christian Ho AKM Motorsport 2m05.574s +1.290s 77
29 Nicolas Baptiste Cram Motorsport 2m05.590s +1.306s 80
30 Pietro Armanni Iron Lynx 2m05.681s +1.397s 74
31 Marcus Amand R-ace GP 2m05.836s +1.552s 66
32 Jorge Garciarce Jenzer Motorsport 2m05.883s +1.599s 72
33 Leonardo Bizzotto BVM Racing 2m05.885s +1.601s 76
34 Piotr Wisnicki Jenzer Motorsport 2m05.927s +1.643s 60
35 Levente Revesz AKM Motorsport 2m05.966s +1.682s 62
36 Pedro Perino DR Formula 2m06.311s +2.027s 70
37 Eron Rexhepi BVM Racing 2m06.315s +2.031s 78
38 Samir Ben Jenzer Motorsport 2m06.334s +2.050s 60
39 Georgios Markogiannis Cram Motorsport 2m06.530s +2.246s 66
40 Vittorio Catino Cram Motorsport 2m07.206s +2.922s 69