Home Formula 4Italian F4 Sztuka, Badoer and Wharton share Italian F4 poles in Spa qualifying

Sztuka, Badoer and Wharton share Italian F4 poles in Spa qualifying

by Ida Wood

Photo: ACI Sport

Three different drivers will start on pole for the three Italian Formula 4 races at Spa-Francorchamps this weekend.

US Racing’s Kacper Sztuka was fastest after the first flying laps were set in Q1, only to be bettered by team-mate Zachary David by 0.097 seconds.

David improved on his next lap to set a 2m21.681s, putting him 0.097s ahead of Sztuka again, with Gianmarco Pradel completing a US Racing top three.

Going into the second half of the 15-minute session, Prema’s drivers were all outside of the top 23 but that would soon change as James Wharton set a 2m21.053s to hit the top of the times for the team.

Van Amersfoort Racing’s Brando Badoer set a 2m21.149s to go second fastest, Sztuka and David improved in third and fourth, and Prema’s Arvid Lindblad, Ugo Ugochukwu and Rashid Al Dhaheri jumped up to fifth, sixth and seventh respectively.

Wharton’s lap was then deleted, dropping him right down the order while Badoer assumed pole position. There were few able to improve in the final minutes, but Wharton set a laptime that counted to bring himself back into fifth place behind Lindblad who improved his pace in fourth. The next best driver to get faster at the end was Nandhavud Bhirombhakdi down in 24th place.

Badoer secured pole by 0.168s over Sztuka, with David and Lindblad filling row two of the race one grid.

Q2 followed a similar pattern with Sztuka and David quick out of the blocks while Prema’s drivers bided their time before lapping at pace.

Sztuka was on provisional pole going into the final five minutes with a 2m21.310s lap, leading team-mates Akshay Bohra, David and Pradel, then with two-and-a-half minutes remaining the pace of Prema was finally shown.

Wharton went to the top with a 2m21.292s, Linblad jumped up to thid and Ugochuku went sixth fastest as R-ace GP’s Raphael Narac got himelf into fourth.

An improvement from Badoer moments before the chequered flag came out meant he then took fifth place, and he improved his pace again on his final lap but did not move up the order. Similarly, Lindlad went faster too at the end but remained in third place as Wharton claimed pole by a tiny 0.018s over Sztuka.

The second-fastest laptimes of each driver across qualifying set race three’s grid, and Lindblad put himself on pole ahead of David and Sztuka based on the Q1 results. The Q2 times were faster though, and it was Sztuka who took pole by 0.135s over Lindblad.

Qualifying round-up
Race 1 grid
1 Brando Badoer Van Amersfoort Racing 2m21.149s
2 Kacper Sztuka US Racing +0.168s
3 Zachary David US Racing +0.203s
4 Arvid Lindblad Prema +0.392s
5 James Wharton Prema +0.530s
6 Ugo Ugochukwu Prema +0.601s
7 Rashid Al Dhaheri Prema +0.639s
8 Matheus Ferreira Van Amersfoort Racing +0.648s
9 Tuukka Taponen Prema +0.824s
10 Ivan Domingues Van Amersfoort Racing +0.862s

Race 2 grid
1 Wharton 2m21.292s
2 Sztuka +0.018s
3 Lindblad +0.057s
4 Raphael Natac R-ace GP +0.312s
5 Badoer +0.446s
6 Akshay Bohra US Racing +0.499s
7 Ugochukwu +0.572s
8 David +0.670s
9 Gianmarco Pradel US Racing +0;.733s
10 James Egzoi PHM Racing +0.747s

Race 3 grid
1 Sztuka 2m21.405s
2 Lindblad +0.135s
3 Wharton +0.150s
4 Badoer +0.362s
5 Ugochukwu +0.505s
6 David +0.611s
7 Bohra +0.616s
8 Pradel +0.698s
9 Egozi +0.705s
10 Domingues +0.902s