Home Formula 4British F4 Rodin’s Higgins and Ninovic take British F4 poles in Donington qualifying

Rodin’s Higgins and Ninovic take British F4 poles in Donington qualifying

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: British F4

Alex Ninovic topped qualifying for the opening round of the British Formula 4 season on Donington Park’s National layout. 

The Rodin Motorsport driver was just 0.013 seconds quicker than James Higgins, earning him pole for race three of the weekend, but his second-best laptime was 0.048s slower than Higgins’ and that meant race one pole went to his team-mate.

Higgins and Ninovic traded top spot throughout qualifying. It was Higgins who set the pace first ahead of Fortec Motorsports’ Kai Daryanani, before Ninovic jumped to first place with a 1m04.911s. 

The pair improved several times after that, gradually lowering the pace until Ninovic set a 1m04.761s that would not be beaten.

Daryanani jumped up to third with his final lap of the session, a 1m04.843s, with Hitech GP’s Deagan Fairclough and Rodin’s Abbi Pulling completing a top five covered by just 0.105s.

Hitech’s Reza Seewooruthun had been fourth fastest when the chequered flag waved, but Daryanani and Pulling improved after that and demoted him to sixth. He was however only 0.14s off pole.

His team-mate Mika Abrahams and Rodin’s Jack Sherwood were seventh and eighth fastest, ahead of JHR Developments’ Ella Lloyd and Fortec’s Alex Berg, who had briefly been top of the times early in the session.

Putting themselves on the front row of race two’s reversed grid were JHR’s Joel Bergstrom and Argenti Motorsport’s Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 junior Yuanpu Cui, who were 12th and 11th fastest respectively. Cui was the top car racing rookie in qualifying and only 0.362s off the pace, with the entire 22-car field covered by 1.155s.

In addition to the top two swapping around, there were several other changes in the order set by second-best laptimes.

Fairclough qualified third for lap one and was 0.085s off pole, despite having three of his laps deleted, Seewooruthun was fourth and Pulling was fifth.

Daryanani’s second-best lap was 0.3s slower than his last-second effort that made him third fastest, and so for race one he will start eighth ahead of Cui. There were then three drivers who were joint 10th fastest with their second-best laps, with Chris Dittmann Racing’s Bart Harrison, Lloyd and Xcel Motorsport’s Zack Scoular all setting a 1m05.256s.

Scoular was first to post that laptime, with, Harrison matching it almost a minute later and then Lloyd setting the same 27s after that. That means Scoular lines up 10th for race one, with Harrison and Lloyd sharing row six of the grid.

Qualifying round-up
Race 1 grid
1 James Higgins Rodin Motorsport 1m04.776s
2 Alex Ninovic Rodin Motorsport +0.048s
3 Deagen Fairclough Hitech GP +0.085s
4 Reza Seewooruthun Hitech GP +0.162s
5 Abbi Pulling Rodin Motorsport +0.201s
6 Jack Sherwood Rodin Motorsport +0.233s
7 Mika Abrahams Hitech GP +0.271s
8 Kai Daryanani Fortec Motorsports +0.366s
9 Yuanpu Cui Argenti Motorsport +0.381s
10 Zack Scoular Xcel Motorsport +0.480s

Race 3 grid
1 Ninovic 1m04.761s
2 Higgins +0.013s
3 Daryanani +0.082s
4 Fairclough +0.099s
5 Pulling +0.105s
6 Seewooruthun +0.140s
7 Abrahams +0.169s
8 Sherwood +0.199s
9 Ella Lloyd JHR Developments +0.290s
10 Alex Berg Fortec Motorsports +0.359s