Mark Godwin Racing’s Jake Dalton soared to the top of the BRDC Formula 4 Championship standings with victory in today’s (Saturday 18 May) first race of the weekend on the Brands Hatch Indy circuit, supporting the DTM.
Dalton, who started the race from pole, drove a controlled race to fend off the challenges of an attacking Charlie Robertson (HHC Motorsport), while American Falco Wauer claimed third for Team KBS. The trio were presented with their trophies on the podium by 1996 Formula One World Champion Damon Hill.
A lap time of 45.386s in qualifying secured pole for Dalton, and from there he didn’t look back, making a strong getaway to lead into Paddock Hill Bend on the first lap, with the field of 24 cars filtering through the first corners without incident.
Settling into the race, Robertson followed Dalton in close pursuit, and was very close to the MGR car on several occasions, particularly at Druids. But the Staffordshire man held firm to claim his second F4 win in a row (the first coming at Silverstone three weeks ago), winning by just 0.175s.
Matthew Graham secured fourth place by virtue of a strong overtaking move up the inside of Druids on Sennan Fielding on lap 18, with Fielding settling for fifth. Jake Hughes claimed sixth for Lanan Racing while a late race move on Matt Bell saw debutant James Fletcher move into seventh place. Bell claimed eighth, and will start on pole position for race two in the process.
Hillspeed’s Seb Morris made up four places on his grid position to claim ninth while Jack Barlow secured 10th for Sean Walkinshaw Racing.
“I knew if I could get off the line in the lead I would have a chance of controlling the race from there,” Dalton commented afterwards. “Charlie was putting me under huge pressure and was a little bit quicker than I expected him to be, and he managed to stay close to me.”
“I’m delighted to claim the lead in the championship and at the moment that’s all that matters. It’s going to be extremely tough in race two starting from eighth and it’s going to be all about making that start count. I’ve got to go for it!”
The second and third races of the weekend for the BRDC Formula 4 Championship at Brands Hatch take place at 14.15 and 16.40 tomorrow.
BRDC F4 Race One result – Brands Hatch Indy
1. Jake Dalton, Mark Godwin Racing, 25 laps
2. Charlie Robertson, HHC Motorsport, +0.175s
3. Falco Wauer, Team KBS, +2.729s
4. Matthew Graham, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +3.498s
5. Sennan Fielding, Douglas Motorsport, +5.999s
6. Jake Hughes, Lanan Racing, +6.682s
7. James Fletcher, Team KBS, +8.724s
8. Matt Bell, MattRBellRacing Team E-Lites, +9.332s
9. Seb Morris, Hillspeed, +10.759s
10. Jack Barlow, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +11.515s
BRDC F4 Championship standings after round 4*
1. Jake Dalton, Mark Godwin Racing, 98pts
2. Seb Morris, Hillspeed, 82pts
3. Matt Bell, MattRBellRacing Team E-Lites, 77pts
4. Charlie Robertson, HHC Motorsport, 73pts
5. Jack Barlow, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, 71pts
6. Matthew Graham, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, 65pts
7. Jake Hughes, Lanan Racing, 56pts
8. Sennan Fielding, Douglas Motorsport, 49pts
9. Ross Gunn, Motionsport, 36pts
10. Struan Moore, Hillspeed, 36pts