BRANDS HATCH 2 OCTOBER, 2016 – The final day of the 2016 F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford saw three drivers from three different teams still in contention for the most coveted prize in British single-seater racing.

Such is the competitiveness of the series it seemed inevitable that the title would not be decided until the very end and this proved to be the case. Max Fewtrell refused to crack under pressure to win the final race and become FIA British Formula 4 Champion, as Sennan Fielding did everything he could in his attempt to land the title.

Race victory was the perfect way for Fewtrell to claim the championship, but it was a win that was merely the tip of the iceberg on the back of a season where he proved that consistency wins championships. 16 podiums over the course of the year – more than any other driver – the foundation of his success.

Outside the title fight Jamie Caroline played a starring role in the penultimate round of the season to claim his first British F4 race victory and become the 10th different winner in a remarkable year for the Ford EcoBoost-powered series.

ROUND 29: SUBLIME CAROLINE CLAIMS POPULAR MAIDEN VICTORY

  • Caroline triumphs at Brands Hatch to become 10th different British F4 winner of the season.
  • Title battle goes down to the wire with Fielding and Fewtrell separated by just three points.
  • Carlin crowned Teams Champion for second year running.

At the 29th time of asking Jamie Caroline pulled off a memorable victory in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford at Brands Hatch. The driver who has provided so much entertainment for fans in his Ford EcoBoost-powered racer in 2016 achieved the British F4 win he desperately craved.

A trademark Caroline fast start from pole saw the Fortec Motorsports driver lead into turn one clear of Carlin’s Petru Florescu. Caroline then proceeded to scamper off in the distance pushing the car to the limit in typical Caroline fashion.

None of the drivers in the leading pack had a response to the Pirtek Racing backed ace who took the chequered flag with a comfortable margin of almost five seconds. A victory made all the sweeter by achieving it in the dry and so convincingly when some have wondered if Caroline was simply a wet weather specialist. After the race that appears to be far from the case.

Explained an ecstatic Caroline: “I didn’t feel like my start was that great actually. I got quite a bit of wheel spin, but Petru didn’t get a great start either.

“I think in the opening laps I was almost two seconds quicker than anyone.

“I was pushing the car so hard on the warm up lap. I knew I had to get the tyres up to temperature so I could push from the outset, especially as I wasn’t quite sure how fast I would be in the dry.

“Maybe I did it a little too much because the tyres started to go off towards the end.

“I went off a couple of times, once at Hawthorns and once at Surtees but thankfully I was able to get the car back on the track.

“Hopefully this win can help me going into next year, especially with some of my sponsors like Pirtek being here this weekend.

“The car was mega. We went back to my old setup from the start of the year in the search of more performance and the weekend has been really good. We were absolutely rapid in the wet and the dry. It’s been hard to achieve that balance, but finally we have got it.”

Added EDGE Sporting Management who have played a pivotal role in guiding Caroline: “So much hard work has been put in and it’s great to see him finally win his first race.

“He should have won more, but he did do a great job today and dominated the race. He was unlucky and unfortunate with what happened in qualifying. He effectively had three poles this weekend.

“It’s always exciting to watch him and we want him to win races which he has finally done so a massive well done to him and everyone who has been helping him.

“We’ve seen so many on-board videos of him coming from the back in the wet and we all know how good he is in those conditions so to show he had the pace in that race on a bone dry track was excellent.”

Behind Caroline emerged a thrilling battle for second which involved title contenders Sennan Fielding and Max Fewtrell, as well as Florescu and Rafael Martins. The four drivers separated by not much more than a second for much of the race.

Florescu wasn’t prepared to relinquish second to team-mate Fewtrell easily to aid his title bid and did brilliantly to hold onto the position for the duration. It left Fewtrell having to settle for third, but crucially two places ahead of Fielding who was unable to pass Rafael Martins. The latter showcasing his masterful defensive driving skills yet again.

It meant that going into the season finale Fewtrell had closed the gap to Fielding in the standings to just three points.

Said Fewtrell: “It’s getting so exciting. I really went out there to try to close the gap and we did that. We had no team orders so I knew Petru wouldn’t make it easy. It’s all about the best man winning.

“I had a mega start to get past Ayrton into turn one and then got past Martins when he went onto the grass.

“I’ve got clear air in front of me from pole in the last race so I just need to keep focused and maximise the great pace of the car.”

Leeds’ title bid was undone, the Red Bull Junior unable to make sufficient progress through the field from 10th, but a thrilling race long battle with Australian compatriot Zane Goddard entertained spectators.

Ayrton Simmons once again ended the race top of the pile in the Rookie class for TRS Arden. A sixth place finish overall another brilliant result for the youngest driver on the grid.

Yesterday’s race winner Pull wasn’t far behind in seventh and crucially brought home enough points to seal the Teams Cup for Carlin. Trevor Carlin’s outfit have been formidable on many occasions this season in their bid to retain their standing as British F4 Teams Champion. 13 wins and a total of 42 podiums a superb achievement after being pushed all the way by TRS Arden.

Commented Carlin team boss Trevor Carlin: “It’s great to have won the Teams Cup. A great team effort and brilliant for all the lads to win the title again. They’ve done such an excellent job. They all push very hard. They work hard, but they have a lot of fun too. They’re a good bunch and they absolutely deserve it. An awesome team.

“It’s always good to win any championship, but to win the F4 British Championship two years in a row is really special. I’m very proud.”

Fortec Motorsports’ rookies Alex Quinn and Nicolai Kjaergaard did well to finish inside the top 10. Elsewhere, Billy Monger made progress from the back of the grid to 12th, recording the fastest lap of the race along the way underlining his prodigious testing pace at the beginning of the weekend.

ROUND 30: FEWTRELL FINISHES IN STYLE TO BE CROWNED FIA BRITISH FORMULA 4 CHAMPION

  • Lights to flag victory for Fewtrell sees him claim title in thrilling season finale.
  • Fielding gives his all to come within touching distance of championship.
  • Ayrton Simmons rounds off best weekend of his British F4 career with second place.

Max Fewtrell won the final round of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford to be crowned FIA British Formula 4 Champion in style, just hours after his Carlin team had become Teams Champion for the second consecutive year.

Fewtrell refused to buckle under immense pressure for the duration of a nail-biting finale which saw Ayrton Simmons and Sennan Fielding chase him home.

The Carlin racer had to overcome a three point deficit to Fielding heading into the race and was in perfect position to do so starting from pole with Fielding in sixth.

He grasped the opportunity with both hands and put on an inspiring display at the front to hold onto the lead. Showcasing not only his mental strength, but exceptional talent behind the wheel.

A clean getaway ensured he led the field into turn one and although he was unable to break away from Simmons, he had enough in hand to remain just far enough ahead to prevent Simmons from making an attack.

“I cannot really put into words just how winning the title feels at the moment,” said Fewtrell. “It’s all a bit surreal and absolutely amazing. I’m really happy for the team too. It’s been such a long season, especially with it going down to the last race.

“I knew I couldn’t let Sennan past and I thought if he got past Ayrton it could get really tricky. I just stayed really consistent and in a good place.

“I’ve worked so hard with the team and it’s amazing to see it all pay off.

“Winning this championship with Ford involved and the FIA is amazing. I think it’s the best junior championship to win. I’m so happy to have won it in my first year of racing in cars. It’s definitely the highlight of my career so far.”

Simmons’ race proved to be more about defensive driving than attacking after Fielding climbed several places thanks to some jaw-dropping overtakes into Paddock Hill Bend where he bravely put everything on the line in his crusade for the title.

Simmons had other ideas though and the youngest driver on the grid rounded off a year in which he has progressed at a rapid rate for TRS Arden by keeping Fielding at bay. Simmons undoubtedly proving he has what it takes to race with the very best. A hard charging Fielding arguably one of the most formidable competitors any racer will come up against.

Explained Simmons whose performance this weekend ensured he finished second in the Rookie class – a feat made all the more impressive given that he missed the first two meetings of the year due to his age: “That race was so intense. I knew I had the pace. I started catching Max towards the very end and would have liked the race to go on a little longer.

“I’m really pleased with what we have achieved this season. The team have been amazing so huge thanks to them.

“It’s been a fantastic end to the season and I’m hungry for even more success now. Hopefully we will be even stronger next year.”

Added championship runner-up Fielding: “We made a few changes to the car which didn’t quite go to plan. I gave it my all from start to finish. I don’t think there was anything else I could have done. Every gap I could have gone for I did.

“It’s disappointing for myself and the team because we have put in so much hard work, but we’ve done so well to develop the car throughout the season.

“A massive thank you to everyone at JHR and Amigos for putting me on the grid. I’m looking forward to 2017 and hopefully I can get that lucky break I deserve. I have shown I can develop a car and bring a team on.

“The team have done a phenomenal job to compete against the likes of Carlin, Fortec and Arden which just shows that JHR are a top team.

“Without a doubt even if I had all the budget in the world I would still choose JHR and do it all over again.

“Thank you to everyone at British F4 as well. It really is one of the best championships in the world.”

Saturday race winner Pull finished just outside the podium places in fourth, but put in yet another assured drive which has been commonplace this year for the Hertfordshire racer.

Behind him Luis Leeds was able to round off the season with a solid points score, with fellow Aussie Goddard in sixth for Double R Racing.

Devlin DeFrancesco made a welcome return to the points after a frustrating weekend for the Canadian ace who has shone on so many occasions in 2016. He came out on top in an entertaining tussle with Carlin team-mate Petru Florescu.

British F4’s newest race winner Jamie Caroline put in a spirited drive to make his way from last on the grid to ninth by the time the chequered flag fell, whilst Rafael Martins finished in the final points paying position.

F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford

Provisional results Round 29 Brands Hatch GP 2 October 2016 
14 laps / 34.06 miles
1 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec 20m 39.385s / 98.95mph
2 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin +4.778s
3 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin +5.039s
4 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +5.239s
5 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +5.728s
6 Ayrton SIMMONS / GBR / Arden +6.433s
7 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +8.905s
8 Alex QUINN / GBR / Fortec +11.340s
9 Nicolai KJAERGAARD / DEN / Fortec +12.257s
10 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +12.581s etc.

Fastest lap Billy MONGER / JHR / 1m 26.818s / 100.89mph

Rookie class 1 Simmons; 2 Quinn; 3 Kjaergaard; 4 Martin

Provisional results Round 30 Brands Hatch GP 2 October 2016
14 laps / 34.06 miles
1 Max FEWTRELL / GBR / Carlin 20m 37.529s / 99.09mph
2 Ayrton SIMMONS / GBR / Arden +0.339s
3 Sennan FIELDING / GBR / JHR +0.890s
4 James PULL / GBR / Carlin +1.961s
5 Luis LEEDS / AUS / Arden +2.520s
6 Zane GODDARD / AUS / Double R +3.006s
7 Devlin DEFRANCESCO / CDN / Carlin +6.229s
8 Petru FLORESCU / ROU / Carlin +6.772s
9 Jamie CAROLINE / GBR / Fortec +11.472s
10 Rafael MARTINS / BRA / Arden +16.790s etc.

Fastest lap Sennan FIELDING / JHR / 1m 27.274s / 100.37mph

Rookie class 1 Simmons; 2 Quinn; 3 Kjaergaard; 4 Martin

Provisional championship standings 1 Fewtrell 358; 2 Fielding 351; 3 Leeds 300; 4 Pull 291; 5 DeFrancesco 265; 6 Florescu 260; 7 Quinn 248; 8 Goddard 239; 9 Martins 205; 10 Caroline 181 etc.

Rookie class 1 Quinn 589; 2 Simmons 430; 3 Kjaergaard 400; 4 J Martin 393; 5 R Martin 130