Florescu takes Last Lap Pole in Damp Qualifying Thriller


Credit: Jakob Ebrey / British F4

In one of the most unpredictable qualifying sessions of the season, Petru Florescu took pole from rookie Alex Quinn. The Romanian had been off the pace compared to the F4 British Championship field, but benefitted from the changeable Knockhill weather.

10 minutes before the start of qualifying, clouds filled the sky as it started to spit slightly. By the time the session got underway, the rain was now in full force. Ignoring this, Zane Goddard headed straight onto track, determined to be the man to set the pace.

The rain was not there to stay though. As soon as it arrived, the weather seemed to be brightening up. The high wind and occasional sun meant the Knockhill track was in permanent change.

Goddard had set the early pace, but as the cars rubbered in, James Pull went to the top. Goddard and him shared the top spot with an identical lap time, but the two weren’t prepared to let up.

It was all change further back with Sennan Fielding and Florescu eventually pushing their way to the head of the table as the sun peaked through at Clark’s.

There was a number of gambles with five minutes to go as some of the field came into the pits to switch to dry tyres. The timing screen was left in chaos as the benchmark continued to drop.

Alex Quinn had been the first car in and was the man to watch as he moved up the order. He eventually took first by over a second from Goddard.

It turned out that no one could call the final order as Florescu surprised everyone by taking pole in the dying seconds. Jamie Caroline had been the man to watch in the final lap, but could only manage third as Quinn pipped him to the line.

It was all change behind them though as Rafa Martins, the Dane of Nicolai Kjaergaard and Frank Bird completed the top six. Crucially for Florescu, his rivals all struggled with Luis Leeds, Fielding, Max Fewtrell and Pull lining up consecutively from tenth to thirteenth.

The three drivers between six and tenth had mixed fortunes. Devlin DeFrancesco had been off the pace all session but recovered to seventh in front of Goddard, who had plummeted down the order with Billy Monger in eighth.