At the end of qualifying for the fourth round of the 2016 Italian Formula 4 Championship, American Juan Manuel Correa came out on top. He topped both qualifying groups and continued Prema Powerteam‘s domination around Mugello.
The Italian F4 drivers completed their mid-week test with Juri Vips the man to beat ahead of the fourth round. The Estonian goes into the weekend as the driver to beat, in a season that has seen an inconsistent run of drivers at the top.
Prior to the first race, Argentine Marcos Siebert leads the standings with 159 points. Having finished every race in the top five, the Jenzer Motorsport driver will hope to establish his lead as the season passes its half way mark.
His domination has meant that the only drivers who can realistically challenge him are Mick Schumacher and Raul Guzman, both on 113 points. Schumacher is currently the only driver to have scored three race victories this season with Guzman and Siebert still on two a piece.
Fortunately for the German, his championship hopes may be improved this weekend as he finished the test in second overall. It turned out to be a good test all round for Prema Powerteam who saw Vips, Schumacher and Juan Manuel Correa fill three of the top four spaces.
Third place overall was Diego Bertonelli. The Italian made the switch to Bhaitech Engineering last round and started to show his true pace. As the pair roll into Mugello, he knows that he’ll have a lot to prove in the second half of the season.
Rounding out the top five was Correa and Joao Vieira. The teams were given eight hours in order to test the machinery, thus making Siebert’s struggle more bemusing. The Argentine continued to be off the pace in qualifying, ensuring we could be in for close championship battle if Schumacher closes the gap.
With the number of competitors not high enough to warrant the new race format, the Italian F4 series will revert back to the traditional three race format. The final reverse grid race will award points for the top eight, while the winner receives 13 points.
While Correa topped both Qualifying groups, it was fair game behind. In race one, Schumacher, Siebert and Giuliano Raucci will line up respectively. While in race two; Schumacher, Raucci and Vips fill the top two rows as Correa leads the way.