Home Formula 4Italian F4 Sasahara claims close victory in race 2 at Adria

Sasahara claims close victory in race 2 at Adria

by Aditya Banerjee
Ukyo Sasahara

Photo: ACI Sport

Stand-in Italian F4 driver Ukyo Sasahara took victory in the in the reversed-grid race two at Adria.

The Japanese driver held off the advances of Lance Stroll and Andrea Russo to cross the line with the three podium finishers separated by just 0.452 seconds.

The start of the race was chaotic, with reverse-grid poleman Ivan Matveev stalling on the grid and being collected by the Antonelli Motorsport car of Matteo Cairoli, with both drivers eliminated on the spot.

DAV driver Gustavo Bandeira, who started alongside Matveev on the front row, was another staller and the Brazilian was hit by Alain Valente, the latter having to dive into the pits minus a front wing. Further back, Mattia Drudi was the third staller at the start, but the drivers behind were able to avoid him.

The crashes brought out the safety car. Sasahara, who had started the race in sixth, led the way behind the safety car ahead of his Euronova teammate Leonardo Pulcini and a fast-starting Stroll in third, with Russo fourth and Stroll’s Prema teammate Brandon Maisano in fifth.

At the restart, Sasahara was able to get away from the chasing pack, while Pulcini lost out to Stroll at the end of the lap. The Canadian subsequently began to quickly close in on the race leader. Pulcini outbraked himself at turn one, losing third to the charging Russo. Further behind, Takashi Kasai managed to pass Max Defourny for sixth.

Stroll managed to close up to Sashara’s tail on lap nine, but the Japanese driver held him off. The battle for lead allowed Russo and Pulcini to close in on the pair, making it a tense four-way fight for the lead, but Sasahara held on to take the win ahead of Ferrari junior Stroll and Russo.

Pulcini finished fourth, ahead of Prema drivers Maisano and Kasai. Defourny held on to seventh from Jenzer’s Lucas Mauron, with Joao Vieira and Bar Baruch completing the top ten.

Race results
Pos. Driver Team Time/Gap
1 Ukyo Sasahara Euronova Racing 14 laps in 19:29.671
2 Lance Stroll Prema Powerteam +0.218
3 Andrea Russo Diegi Motorsport +0.452
4 Leonardo Pulcini Euronova Racing +1.075
5 Brandon Maisano Prema Powerteam +3.069
6 Takashi Kasai Prema Powerteam +9.132
7 Max Defourny Cram Motorsport +13.828
8 Lucas Mauron Jenzer Motorsport +14.193
9 Joao Vieira Antonelli? Motorsport +15.256
10 Bar Baruch Israel F4 +17.671
11 Mattia Drudi Cram Motorsport +17.846
12 Keith Camilleri Malta Formula Racing +19.076
13 Gustavo Bandeira DAV Racing +19.343
14 Nico Rindlisbacher Jenzer Motorsport +19.634
15 Edi Haxhiu Cram Motorsport +20.606
16 Ali Al Khalifa Jenzer Motorsport +24.518
17 Jonathan Giudice Antonelli Motorsport +32.786
18 Zack Dante Malta Formula Racing +33.634
19 Giovanni Altoe Cram Motorsport +51.266
20 Alain Valente Jenzer Motorsport +1 lap
Not classified
Matteo Cairoli Antonelli Motorsport +14 laps
Ivan Matveev SMP Racing by Euronova +14 laps