Home Formula 4 Peebles takes Formula Winter Series lead in chaotic Valencia round

Peebles takes Formula Winter Series lead in chaotic Valencia round

by Formula Scout

Photo: Gedlich Racing/Daniel Burgin

Griffin Peebles moved into the Formula Winter Series points lead in round two at Valencia’s Ricardo Tormo circuit.

There were six pre-event test sessions on Thursday and Friday, and changes to Campos Racing’s line-up as Jan Przyrowski and Nathan Tye replaced Carrie Schreiner and James Egozi.

Their team-mate Andres Cardenas set the pace, a 1m33.047s putting him 0.028 seconds clear of MP Motorsport’s Peebles. Drivex School’s Mikkel Pedersen was 0.045s behind in third. The top 29 were covered by a second, with 38th place 1.748s slower than first.

These results proved critical as in Saturday’s qualifying session 37 drivers had at least two laptimes deleted for track limits abuse and Mattia Colnaghi’s transponder did not work. The stewards decided to disqualify all drivers and use testing’s day two results to set the race one grid.

Cardenas therefore had pole, and converted it into victory. Drivex’s Juan Cota rose from fourth to second before the opening corner, while Colnaghi picked up front wing damage but initially only dropped one spot to 14th.

The safety car appeared early due to Lenny Reid and Filippo Fioreninto crashing out, although once Fioreninto’s car was put back on track he was able to continue.

Colnaghi pitted on lap three, and racing resumed on lap six. There was immediate drama as Pedersen bounced over the turn one kerbs and into the gravel, with Ernesto Rivera also crashing out there.

The safety car returned, and the next restart was on lap nine. Cardenas kept his cool up front until race-ending red flags waved on lap 14 due to two cars crashing out. The results were taken from the previous lap, with Cardenas winning by 0.579s over Cota. Peebles finished third ahead of team-mate Maciej Gladysz.

US Racing’s Matheus Ferreira and Gianmarco Pradel came from 10th and 12th to finish sixth and seventh. Przyrowski was punted out of the points by Douwe Dedecker late on.

Race one’s fastest laps set race two’s grid, with Peebles on pole ahead of Cota and Cardenas. Q2 then took place on Sunday morning, and Cardenas initially pipped Ferreira to race three pole by 0.001s. Dedecker and Przyrowski were both 0.048s behind, and Cota was just 0.118s back in fifth place as 0.987s covered the top 21. Peebles was not classified due to a faulty transponder.

Race two was delayed, and when it eventually began there was a revised grid with Cota down in seventh and Akshay Bohra moved behind Maciej Gladysz in fourth. There were several other changes in the top 15.

Peebles held off Cardenas at the start, then the safety car appeared on lap two after Wiktor Dobrzanski and Ernesto Rivera crashed out. Kabir Anurag also visited the gravel but managed to continue.

The safety car dissapeared for only half of lap five as Bianca Bustamante crashed on the restart lap while Bart Harrison had to pit for a new front wing. The next restart was on lap seven, and Peebles quickly pulled away while Cota passed Colnaghi for seventh on lap 11.

Peebles’ three-second gap was nullified on lap 12 as the safety car returned due to Finn Harrison suffering suspension failure and stopping on track. Racing resumed on lap 14 but only briefly. Cota passed Ferreira, then the safety car was needed again as Bianca Bustamante retired in the gravel.

Peebles mastered the final lap restart to win ahead of Cardenas, Gladysz and Pradel, who passed Bohra. A five-second penalty for Gladysz then dropped him to 15th.

Later in the day a revised race three grid put Peebles on pole, with Cardenas not even in second as a five-place penalty dropped him to seventh. Ferreira therefore appeared on the front row, with Dedecker and Cota just behind.

Peebles lost the race lead to Ferreira before the opening corner, and the safety car was summoned on lap one after Alenxander Savinkov, Lorenzo Castillo and Pedersen were involved in incidents.

Racing resumed with 20 minutes left on the clock, and Pradel took advantage of a good exit out of the last corner to pass Emanuele Olivieri for 10th. That became ninth when Przyrowski dropped down the order, and when Maxim Rehm touched the rear of US Racing team-mate Anurag’s car at turn eight they both ran wide and Pradel moved up to seventh.

The safety car came out again with 12 minutes to go as Cota stopped with car issues while running in fourth. The track went green again one lap later, as Cota was able to get moving again and headed to the pits.

Ferreira and Peebles broke away at the front of the field in the last laps but did not battle each other. Second place for Peebles put him level on points with Cardenas, who finished fifth, and into the championship lead on second place countback.

Results round-up
Race 1 (13 laps)
1 Andres Cardenas Campos Racing 23m14.890s
2 Juan Cota Drivex School +0.579s
3 Griffin Peebles MP Motorsport +1.171s
4 Maciej Gladysz MP Motorsport +2.967s
5 Akshay Bohra US Racing +3.734s
6 Matheus Ferreira US Racing +4.487s
7 Gianmarco Pradel US Racing +5.039s
8 Lucas Fluxa MP Motorsport +8.892s
9 Nathan Tye Campos Racing +9.032s
10 Peter Bouzinelos MP Motorsport +10.443s
Pole: Cardenas, 1m33.047s
Fastest lap: Peebles, 1m33.532s

Race 2 (17 laps)
1 Peebles 32m28.280s
2 Cardenas +0.781s
3 Pradel +2.105s
4 Bohra +2.976s
5 Cota +3.176s
6 Ferreira +3.612s
7 Mattia Colnaghi MP Motorsport +3.762s
8 Rene Lammers MP Motorsport +4.318s
9 Maxim Rehm US Racing +4.849s
10 Bouzinelos +4.979s
FL: Peebles, 1m33.543s

Race 3 (18 laps)
1 Ferreira
2 Peebles +1.225s
3 Douwe Dedecker Global Racing Service +4.898s
4 Bohra +2.967s
5 Cardenas +5.843s
6 Pradel +6.529s
7 Rehm +7.478s
8 Kabir Anurag US Racing +8.151s
9 Emanuele Olivieri AKM Motorsport +9.543s
10 Tye +9.993s
P: Peebles, 1m32.886s
FL: Ferreira, 1m33.413s

Championship standings
1 Peebles 108   2 Cardenas 108   3 Ferreira 77   4 Cota 60   5 Gladysz 55   Bohra 51   7 Pedersen 33   8 Pradel 37   9 Colnaghi 18   10 James Egozi 16