Home Formula 4Italian F4 Sztuka gets his fourth Italian F4 win in a row to close in on Lindblad

Sztuka gets his fourth Italian F4 win in a row to close in on Lindblad

by Ida Wood

Photo: ACI Sport

US Racing’s Kacper Sztuka fourth Italian Formula 4 victory in a row helped him reduce Arvid Lindblad’s points lead in race one at Mugello.

Sztuka started from pole and shared the grid’s front row with Prema’s Tuukka Taponen, who was judged to have jumped the start although he actually stalled and dropped to 13th.

That promoted team-mate Ugo Ugochukwu into second ahead of US’s Pradel and Prema’s Lindblad, another to have jumped the start. Pradel managed to pass Ugochukwu before the safety car was summoned due to Matteo Quintarelli’s car stopping on track.

Racing resumed on lap three and Sztuka left is as late as possible to return to racing speed. That plan worked as it enabled him to break away while Ugochukwu and Lindblad passed Pradel on either side of him.

It was a peaceful race at the front thereon, with Sztuka finishing 1.594s clear of Ugochukwu. A 10-second penalty for jumping the start dropped Lindblad from third to fifth behind Pradel and team-mate Rashid Al Dhaheri.

US’s Akshay Bohra in sixth led a train of cars, with Van Amersfoort Racing’s Brando Badoer on his tail and the battling James Wharton (Prema) and Freddie Slater (VAR) just behind them. Taponen recovered to ninth by passing Slater, but then dropped back behind him at the end and his 10s penalty knocked him down to 15th.

Car racing debutant and Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 junior Alex Powell finished a lapped 28th after changing his front wing on lap three, his Prema team-mate Niko Lacorte stopped on track four laps from the end, meanwhile Kabir Anurag, Nandhavud Bhirombhakdi and Zachary David all retired in the pits.

Race result (17 laps)
Pos Driver Team Time
1 Kacper Sztuka US Racing 32m55.821s
2 Ugo Ugochukwu Prema +1.594s
3 Gianmarco Pradel US Racing +9.389s
4 Rashid Al Dhaheri Prema +10.602s
5 Arvid Lindblad Prema +13.287s
6 Akshay Bohra US Racing +13.446s
7 Brando Badoer Van Amersfoort Racing +14.798s
8 James Wharton Prema +17.039s
9 Freddie Slater Van Amersfoort Racing +17.671s
10 Ivan Domingues Van Amersfoort Racing +18.423s
11 Matheus Ferreira Van Amersfoort Racing +19.548s
12 James Egozi PHM Racing +22.499s
13 Alfio Spina BVM Racing +27.302s
14 Ariel Elkin Jenzer Motorsport +27.521s
15 Tuukka Taponen Prema +27.734s
16 Raphael Narac R-ace GP +29.165s
17 Ethan Icher Jenzer Motorsport +35.888s
18 Ruiqi Liu US Racing +36.251s
19 Tina Hausmann AKM Motorsport +41.001s
20 Kim Hwarang Jenzer Motorsport +41.607s
21 Jack Beeton Van Amersfoort Racing +42.317s
22 Aurelia Nobels Prema +49.163s
23 Frederik Lund AKM Motorsport +50.973s
24 Diego de la Torre AKM Motorsport +53.267s
25 Viktoria Blokhina PHM Racing +54.622s
26 Davide Larini PHM Racing +55.211s
27 Guido Luchetti Airflow Racing +58.994s
28 Alex Powell Prema +1 lap
29 Niko Lacorte Prema +4 laps
Ret Kabir Anurag US Racing
Ret Nandhavud Bhirombhakdi PHM Racing
Ret Zachary David US Racing
Ret Matteo Quintarelli R-ace GP
Ret Giacomo Pedrini PHM Racing
Fastest lap: Sztuka, 1m48.927s

Championship standings
Lindblad 255.5   2 Sztuka 208   3 Ugochukwu 204   4 Wharton 160.5   5 Badoer 128   6 Taponen 123   7 David 114   8 Bohra 86   9 Lacorte 71   10 Al Dhaheri 57