Sennan Fielding has taken over third place in the BRDC Formula 4 Championship title battle after claiming his fourth win of the season at Donington Park. The only man ever to win three races in one weekend fought a determined 12 lap battle with championship leader George Russell on the Grand Prix layout of the east midlands circuit after taking pole in the morning qualifying session.
Russell kept Fielding honest throughout, with the Lanan Racing machine only 0.828 seconds behind the eventual race winner at the flag. The gap did go out to almost one and a half seconds initially, as Russell squabbled with his Lanan team mates over the lower podium spots. Struan Moore briefly claimed second but before he could consolidate and head off in pursuit of Fielding, Russell counter attacked at Old Hairpin to settle the second place decision for the rest of the race.
Despite all the championship leader could do, Fielding appeared to manage the pace to the end of the race, in the process closing the top three in the title battle up. Russell, Arjun Maini in the third Lanan machine and Fielding are now covered by only 23 points with five races left in the championship season.
Maini dropped back from his team mates in the latter stages of the race, but not far enough to fall in to the clutches of HHC racer Will Palmer who took fifth place. A strong performance form Douglas Motorsport’s Diego Menchaca in sixth and Charlie Eastwood in eighth bracketed Raoul Hyman, who dropped to fourth place in the championship standings as a result. Eastwood nabbed the pole for race two in the process.
Jordan Albert for SWR – Caterham F1 and Gaetano di Mauro for Petroball Racing rounded out the top ten.
“It was a very close race and George was pressuring me all the way through,” a delighted Fielding explained. “The gap seemed to be stuck at around a second for the last half, I had a good initial advantage and then he put in some good laps and brought the gap down.
“I thought he was going to pressure me a lot more towards the end of the race but I was able to keep my cool and take a great result.
“I didn’t have to go defensive through the race, but every time I glanced in the mirror I could see the Lanan car right behind me, and I knew I had to push all the way through.”