PREMA Racing aiming for key championship step at Red Bull Ring
Coming from a long summer break, the Italian Formula 4 Championship will go underway this weekend as PREMA approaches one of its toughest tests of the year with five championships running at the same time in three separate locations. Italian F4 will race at Red Bull Ring, home to the fifth round of the series featuring a unique format due to a record 40-car entry.
The Spielberg venue is well known by teams and drivers, as it’s a classic destination for multiple series and even off-season testing. As a consequence, the pack is usually extremely tight there, with smaller amounts of time making for huge gains on track. Many things can happen during a weekend, and mistakes will be especially considering the weekend program. With so many entries, the field needed to be split into heat races. Drivers will enter a Collective Test on Thursday and will head straight into Qualifying on Friday. Three heat races will be held on Saturday and Sunday, with each driver taking part in two of them. The best drivers overall will then contest a Final on Sunday evening.
So far, the team amassed 10 wins out of 12 races, with 16-year-old Kimi Antonelli leading the way on teammate Rafael Camara in driver points. While the Italian has been a dominant force in the last couple of events, the 15-year-old Brazilian has two wins to his credit and plenty of podium finishes. Australian James Wharton sits fourth in the championship and is tracking P3 after hitting the podium in all the events so far and claiming his maiden European win in the ADAC series at Nürburgring.
On the other hand, Charlie Wurz delivered impressive progress. The F4 UAE-winning Austrian secured two podiums at Vallelunga. Conrad Laursen is also having a rebound, having cruised to his first ADAC win at Zandvoort: the Red Bull Ring will bring back the international flavour that propelled him towards positive results.
Last but not least, the team will field high-potential American Ugo Ugochukwu, who made his debut with the team at Nürburgring. The 15-year-old racer has shown impressive promise, and he will have the chance to mature even further in a high-potential field with a high car count.
Angelo Rosin - Team Principal
"We have won many races this year, but the title is not ours yet, and Nürburgring showed us that we must not take anything for granted. As we move on with the season, our competitors are getting closer and closer, so we must stay calm to carry on the work we made so far. We have six stellar drivers, and we feel that's a very important component for success. We will keep it simple, keep pushing, stay focused, and hopefully the results will prove us right."
Friday, September 9th, 2022
14:15 - Qualifying
Saturday, September 10th, 2022
9:10 - Heat Race 1
14:45 - Heat Race 2
Sunday, September 11th, 2022
10:35 - Heat Race 3
17:25 - Final