Home News Tsolov comes out on top in battle for Spanish F4 race one win at Spa

Tsolov comes out on top in battle for Spanish F4 race one win at Spa

by Ida Wood

Photo: Spanish F4

Spanish Formula 4’s points leader Nikola Tsolov took his sixth win in a row in the first race of the weekend at Spa-Francorchamps.

The Campos Racing driver started from pole, ahead of MP Motorsport’s Kirill Smal, Campos team-mate Hugh Barter and MP’s Valerio Rinicella on the front two rows of the grid.

Smal dropped behind the row two starters in the first moments of the race, then Barer passed Tsolov at Les Combes before a crash at the next corner between Max Arkhangelskiy and Max Mayer that sent both into retirement and brought out the safety car.

Racing resumed on lap four, and Barter held on to the lead for a lap before Tsolov slipstreamed past him at the end of the Kemmel Straight. A spin for Tsolov’s main title rival Timoteusz Kucharczyk then led to the safety car being called out for a second time on that lap, and so Tsolov sat in the lead until the next restart on lap seven.

This time Rinicella was the driver on the attack, passing Barter on the restart lap and then getting ahead of Tsolov down the Kemmel. He immediately got defensive once the move was done, but with some of the straight still to go it meant Tsolov could make use of the slipstream of the new leader and he dived down the inside of Rinicella at Les Combes in a brilliant move to reclaim first place.

Due to the lengthy safety car periods there was only one more lap after that, and Tsolov took the win to extend his points lead.

Rinicella was demoted back to third on the final lap as Barter passed him down the Kemmel, and Smal held on to fourth ahead of Campos’s Georg Kelstrup and Monlau Motorsport’s Robert de Haan.

Global Racing Service’s series debutant Marcos Flack retired on lap two after stopping his car at the side of the track, and MP’s Miron Pingasov ended his race in the pits without a rear wing.

The debuting Sainteloc Racing team finished 24th and last with its driver Theophile Nael, who was also making his single-seater debut.

Race result (9 laps)
Pos Driver Team Time
1 Nikola Tsolov Campos Racing 27m28.316s
2 Hugh Barter Campos Racing +0.876s
3 Valerio Rinicella MP Motorsport +1.334s
4 Kirill Smal MP Motorsports +1.988s
5 Georg Kelstrup Campos Racing +2.598s
6 Robert de Haan Monlau Motorsport +3.225s
7 Manuel Espirito Santo Campos +3.680s
8 Gael Julien Drivex School +4.198s
9 Christian Ho MP Motorsport +4.356s
10 Suleiman Zanfari MP Motorsports +5.456s
11 Bruno del Pino Drivex School +7.334s
12 Tasanapol Inthraphuvasak MP Motorsport +7.834s
13 Filip Jenic Campos Racing +8.426s
14 Jef Machiels Monlau Motorsport +9.630s
15 Anshul Gandhi Cram Motorsport +10.618s
16 Nelson Neto Cram Motorsport +12.149s
17 Ethan Ischer Sainteloc Racing +13.788s
18 Ricardo Gracia GRS +14.639s
19 Sebastian Gravlund MP Motorsports +15.239s
20 Daniel Nogales Teo Martin Motorsport +15.796s
21 Lola Lovinfosse Teo Martin Motorsport +17.260s
22 Alvaro Garcia Formula de Campeones +17.433s
23 Aurelia Nobels Formula de Campeones +25.952s
24 Theophile Nael Formula de Campeones +1m04.138s
Ret Miron Pingasov MP Motorsports
Ret Timoteusz Kucharczyk MP Motorsport
Ret Max Mayer Formula de Campeones
Ret Max Arkhangelskiy Drivex School
Fastest lap: Tsolov, 2m25.049s

Championship standings
1 Tsolov 195   2 Kucharczyk 112   3 Barter 87   4 Kelstrup 67   5 Smal 61   6 Inthraphuvasak 56   7 Jenic 56   8 Zanfari 52   Julien 46   10 Rinicella 46