Home News R-ace GP’s Zachary David fastest as F4 field arrives in Kuwait

R-ace GP’s Zachary David fastest as F4 field arrives in Kuwait

by Ida Wood

Photo: F4 UAE

R-ace GP’s Zachary David was fastest in two out of three sessions on day one of pre-event testing for the Formula 4 United Arab Emirates championship at Kuwait Motor Town.

The circuit is the first in another country to be visited by the series, and will host the next two rounds of the 2023 season.

David topped the opening session, marking the first organised single-seater track action in Kuwait, with a 1m56.353s lap. It put him just 0.097 seconds clear of MP Motorsport’s Valerio Rinicella, and with the top 11 covered by a second on pace.

The first representative laptime set in the session, after drivers got a feel for a track that was totally new to them, was set by Rinicella after 10 minutes and was a 2m01.011s. He went two tenths faster on his next lap, then disputed top spot with Sainteloc Racing’s Theophile Nael.

The pace was brought down to 1m58.822s, and a while later there was another battle to be fastest between David, Carlin’s Dion Gowda and PHM Racing’s Valentin Kluss who ended the first half of the sesson on top with a 1m58.225s lap.

Further improvements came in with 15 minutes remaining, with PHM’s Noah Stromsted going fastest. David reacted by being first into the 1m57s, then Stromsted went fastest again. David bettered him again, breaking into the 1m56s, then was knocked off of top spot by Rinicella. He reclaimed first place with his penultimate lap.

Rinicella topped session two, leading the way by 0.755s over Mumbai Falcons’ Tuukka Taponen with a 1m55.261s effort. Taponen’s team-mate James Wharton and Nael were the only other drivers within a second of Rinicella.

The session was interrupted early on by a red flag caused by Sainteloc’s Luciano Morano, and team-mate Nael was first to the top.

Rinicella, Taponen and then Rinicella again got a second lower in laptime in each of their stints at the top, before James Wharton held the fastest lap for 34 minutes through a second red flag stoppaged caused by Cram-Hitech GP’s Flavio Olivieri.

Taponen lowered the pace by 0.082s when track action resumed, with Rinicella going 0.009s faster than that and then setting the first sub-1m56s lap.

David and Jesse Carrasquedo Jr, who was third in session one, Stromsted and Gowda were among seven drivers who failed to set a personal best lap in session two.

Track limits abuse became an increasing issue in session three as drivers got more used to the track, and David became the only driver to go sub-1m55s as he went fastest again ahead of Rinicella and Wharton.

Nael, Kluss, Wharton and Rinicella all took turns at the top during the session, and the only non-improvers were Jack Beeton, Kanato Le and Sebastian Murray.

Test day one results
Pos Driver Team Time Gaps Laps
1 Zachary David R-ace GP 1m54.772s 52
2 Valerio Rinicella MP Motorsport 1m55.118s +0.346s 56
4 James Wharton Mumbai Falcons 1m55.227s +0.455s 51
4 Ugo Ugochukwu Prema 1m55.278s +0.506s 53
5 Jesse Carrasquedo Jr R-ace GP 1m55.337s +0.565s 50
6 Tuukka Taponen Mumbai Falcons 1m55.485s +0.713s 53
7 Noah Stromsted PHM Racing 1m55.538s +0.766s 52
8 Theophile Nael Sainteloc Racing 1m55.568s +0.796s 56
9 Valentin Kluss PHM Racing 1m55.601s +0.796s 55
10 Dion Gowda Carlin 1m55.628s +0.856s 61
11 Hiyu Yamakoshi Pinnacle VAR 1m55.660s +0.888s 60
12 Arvid Lindblad Hitech GP 1m55.708s +0.936s 51
13 Federico Rifai Xcel Motorsport 1m55.731s +0.959s 61
14 Alexander Abkhazava R-ace GP 1m56.009s +1.237s 56
15 William Macintyre Hitech GP 1m56.055s +1.283s 41
16 Noah Lisle Xcel Motorsport 1m56.071s +1.299s 57
17 Raphael Narac R-ace GP 1m56.094s +1.322s 62
18 Keanu Al Azhari Yas Heat 1m56.109s +1.337s 55
19 Alexander Bolduev Xcel Motorsport 1m56.168s +1.396s 58
20 Niko Lacorte Prema 1m56.216s +1.444s 53
21 Lena Buhler R2Race 1m56.268s +1.496s 52
22 Jakob Bergmeister PHM Racing 1m56.283s +1.511s 57
23 Akshay Bohra PHM Racing 1m56.314s +1.542s 58
24 Kai Daryanani Pinnacle VAR 1m56.587s +1.815s 65
25 Kanato Le Hitech GP 1m56.753s +1.981s 36
26 Theodor Jensen Sainteloc Racing 1m56.817s +2.045s 57
27 James Piszcyk Hitech GP 1m56.858s +2.086s 45
28 Flavio Olivieri Cram-Hitech GP 1m57.124s +2.352s 41
29 Victoria Blokhina R2Race 1m57.141s +2.369s 57
30 Matteo Quintarelli Yas Heat 1m57.274s +2.502s 48
31 Sebastian Murray Cram-Hitech GP 1m57.414s +2.642s 59
32 George Zhuravskiy Xcel Motorsport 1m57.454s +2.682s 59
33 Hamda Al Qubaisi Yas Heat 1m57.514s +2.742s 60
34 Emely de Heus MP Motorsport 1m57.516s +2.744s 59
35 Rishon Rajeev Mumbai Falcons 1m57.617s +2.845s 49
36 Jack Beeton Pinnacle VAR 1m57.753s +2.981s 53
37 Luciano Morano Sainteloc Racing 1m58.514s +3.742s 35
38 Bianca Bustamante Prema 1m58.661s +3.889s 39