F4 British Championship

Zagazeta and Rees trade Friday fastest times at Snetterton as British F4 returns

2 Mins read
Credit: Jakob Ebery Photography

In what was the first Friday action of the 2021 British F4 season at the second race meeting this weekend at Snetterton, the famed Norfolk circuit was predictably busy for both 45 minute practice sessions, giving all 18 drivers a chance to tailor their cars for the upcoming weekend of three races.

When the dust settled on an overcast but humid June day, It was Phinsys by Argenti’s Matias Zagazeta that topped the times in the morning session ahead of Fortec Motorsport’s rookie Oliver Gray and Zak Taylor, with JHR Developments’ Matthew Rees continuing to show impressive form with the fastest time in the afternoon session ahead of Carlin’s Roman Bilinski and another impressive rookie, Mckenzy Cresswell.

Surprisingly, it was the morning session that yielded the fastest times of the day albeit on a green track surface. Zagazeta’s timesheet topping lap of 1:51.987 was enough for a two tenths of a second cushion over Oliver Gray, and Zak Taylor a father tenth back – the margins were very close on the 2.97-mile circuit.

It would prove to be a mixed session for Fortec Motorsport’s championship leaders James Hedley and Joel Granfors however, with Granfors finishing in eighth place and double Thruxton race winner Hedley having to miss a lot of the session due to mechanical troubles, leaving him at the base of the timesheet.

Further down the order, Marcos Flack squeezed into ninth place for Argenti Motorsport, placing all three drivers from the team in the top ten, just ahead of Abbi Pulling. The newly announced W Series reserve driver for 2021 will be looking to bounce back after a stalled start to her British F4 campaign in Thruxton.

Georgi Dimitrov returned to action after missing the opening round back in May with a thirteenth place finish in the morning session for the single car Richardson Racing team, with Carlin new boys Kai Askey and Dougie Bolger slotting in behind and Thomas Ikin in sixteenth. British F4 new boy David Morales finished at the bottom of the times in his first outing for the Arden Motorsport outfit.

Credit: Jakob Every Photography

For the afternoon session it was JHR Developments’ Matthew Rees that continued to show his early season promise after taking pole position at Thruxton last month, winding up just over a tenth ahead of Roman Bilinski and fellow JHR team mate Mckenzy Cresswell in third.

James Hedley put his slow start to the day behind him, with the Fortec Motorsport championship leader claiming fourth fastest of the session ahead of Abbi Pulling in fifth and Matias Zagazeta backing up his fastest time from the morning in sixth place.

Oliver Gray continued his impressive start to the weekend with the rookie finishing in seventh ahead of race three Thruxton winner Joseph Loake, placing all four JHR Development cars in the top eight.

Carlin’s Kai Askey and Joel Granfors rounded out the top ten with just over a second covering the top 15 cars in what could be a very competitive qualifying session tomorrow morning at Snetterton.

The grid now turn their attention to qualifying and the first two races of the weekend, with the action at Snetterton set to begin at 09:05 tomorrow (12 June).

Practice 1 Classification (Top 10)

1Matias ZagazetaPhinsys by Argenti1:51.987
2Oliver Gray (R)Fortec Motorsport+ 0.237
3Zak TaylorArden Motorsport+ 0.357
4Mckenzy Cresswell (R)JHR Developments+ 0.413
5Eduardo Coseteng (R)Phinsys by Argenti+ 0.508
6Roman BilinskiCarlin+ 0.511
7Matthew Rees (R)JHR Developments+ 0.529
8Joel GranforsFortec Motorsport+ 0.529
9Marcos Flack (R)Phinsys by Argenti+ 0.540
10Abbi PullingJHR Developments+ 0.600

Practice 2 Classification (Top 10)

1Matthew Rees (R)JHR Developments1:52.483
2Roman BilinskiCarlin+ 0.135
3Mckenzy Cresswell (R)JHR Developments+ 0.228
4James HedleyFortec Motorsport+ 0.321
5Abbi PullingJHR Developments+ 0.358
6Matias ZagazetaPhinsys by Argenti+ 0.465
7Oliver Gray (R)Fortec Motorsport+ 0.537
8Joseph LoakeJHR Developments+ 0.566
9Kai Askey (R)Carlin+ 0.717
10Joel Granfors Fortec Motorsport+ 0.720
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British Formula 4 correspondent and occasional F1 reporter for The Checkered Flag.
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