17 year old Brazilian racer Gaetano di Mauro has claimed his first victory in the BRDC Formula 4 Championship at Brands Hatch, securing the first ever top step finish for his team Petroball Racing in the process. Gaetano lead the race from start to finish on the Grand Prix layout of the Swanley circuit after a brief struggle with Lanan Racing’s Struan Moore.
The first and only real challenge to di Mauro’s pace came on the opening lap as Moore attempted the pass round Paddock Hill Bend. Having successfully rebuffed that advance, di Mauro settled into a half second lead which he held throughout the race. Moore was forced to settle for a second’s gap to his team mate Arjun Maini who rounded out the podium.
Raoul Hyman battled for fourth place with the Sean Walkinshaw Racing, now called SWR – Caterham F1, racer Jordan Albert. The SWR driver’s fifth place finish is his personal best of the season and while both he and the HHC Motorsport title challenger were over 14 seconds off the pace, the action was thrilling. Sixth and seventh went to Sennan Fielding, the first racer to claim a triple in the BRDC F4 championship last time out at Silverstone and MGR Motorsport’s Chirs Middlehurst.
Will Palmer took two places during the race to earn eighth place and pole for the second race of the weekend on Sunday.
Hillspeed’s Gustavo Lima took ninth place ahead of one of the stories of the event. George Russell’s tenth place finish kept him just in control of the title fight. The championship leader’s eleven point advantage in the standings was destroyed in qualifying along with his MSV F4-013 which forced Russell to start in 21st position on the grid. A stunning drive brought him back to tenth place by the flag and maintained a margin of just a single point over his main rival for the title, Raoul Hyman.
Rahul Raj Mayer was the first to fall outside the top ten with Charlie Eastwood for Douglas Motorsport in twelfth place. Tom Jackson’s Chris Dittmann Racing machine took 13th ahead of the second SWR – Caterham F1 runner Diego Borelli. Alfredo Zabalza took 15th place ahead of Diego Menchaca with the first of the Meridian Racing runners, Connor Jupp in seventeenth.
Meridian are still getting to grips with the F4 car after joining the championship with both of their Dunlop MSA
Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain drivers at Silverstone. Jai Nijjar took 20th for the team, last of the classified runners and 55.831 seconds off the leader. CDR’s Tom Bale and MGR’s Michael Claessens split the pair while Rodrigo Fonseca was the only retirement for Douglas.
Gaetano di Mauro was thrilled with his maiden win. He said, “It’s unbelievable, I’m so happy! Struan was so quick and I had to be very careful not to make a mistake. He was able to catch me in the first sector, but I managed to keep him behind me.
“This is a great result for the team and myself, and now we can hopefully move on and get some more!”
The BRDC Formula 4 Championship continues on Sunday with two races at 11:40 and 15:45.