Louis Sharp claimed the 2023 British Formula 4 championship after a second-place finish in the final race of the season, won by Deagen Fairclough.
The Rodin Carlin driver lost the race lead off the line but managed to stay ahead of title rival Will Macintyre. Macintyre kept Sharp under pressure throughout the race, but Sharp didn’t put a wheel wrong and took the chequered flag ahead.
Meanwhile, Fairclough took his first win in a non-reversed-grid race to secure third in the championship standings in style.
There was little drama at the front of the field. After Fairclough took the lead off the line, he enjoyed a trouble-free race. Sharp only needed to stay ahead of Macintyre to take the title, and didn’t stay close to the JHR Developments driver ahead. Fairclough extended a lead of more than two seconds, while Sharp tried to maintain the gap to Macintyre behind.
Hitech driver Macintyre managed to stay within a second throughout the race, and was 0.7s behind Sharp when the chequered flag fell. He was never quite close enough to make a move, though. Late in the race, Macintyre was handed a track limits warning as he continued to push, but managed to avoid a penalty.
A potential late-race safety car threatened to mix things up when Kai Daryanani ran wide through the gravel at paddock and almost hit the wall. He managed to keep his car moving and returned to the track, keeping the race green.
James Piszyck finished fourth, ahead of Gabriel Stilp, who made it three Hitech cars in the top three.
Aqil Alibhai was under pressure from Freddie Slater late on, but the Double R Racing driver slipped back in the final laps. Slater held on to seventh, behind Alibhai, but was now closer to Mika Abrahams behind than Alibhai ahead.
Dion Gowda and Gustav Jonsson rounded out the top 10.
The closest battle through the latter part of the race was at the back of the field, as Isaac Barashi, Josh Irfan and Douwe Dedecker battled for position. Barashi came out of that fight on top, finishing 15th ahead of Irfan and Dedecker.
Race result (15 laps)
|1||Deagen Fairclough||JHR Developments||21m24.522s|
|3||William Macintyre||Hitech GP||+3.188s|
|4||James Piszcyk||Hitech GP||+7.149s|
|5||Gabriel Stilp||Hitech GP||+8.322s|
|6||Aqil Alibhai||Virtuosi Racing||+10.477s|
|7||Freddie Slater||Double R Racing||+12.501s|
|8||Mika Abrahams||Fortec Motorsports||+13.449s|
|10||Gustav Jonsson||Chris Dittmann Racing||+15.168s|
|11||Patrick Heuzenroeder||Argenti Motorsport||+23.645s|
|12||Kanato Le||Hitech GP||+24.368s|
|13||James Higgins||Fortec Motorsports||+25.097s|
|15||Isaac Barashi||Argenti Motorsport||+36.018s|
|17||Douwe Dedecker||Virtuosi Racing||+36.989s|
|18||Jack Sherwood||Chris Dittmann Racing||+40.378s|
|19||Kai Daryanani||Virtuosi Racing||+44.718s|
|Fastest lap: Fairclough, 1m24.932s