Dunne equals wins record and extends points lead in Thruxton opener
Alex Dunne equalled the record for most victories in a single season with a lights-to-flag win in the opening ROKiT F4 British Championship certified by FIA race at Thruxton this weekend (27-28 August).
Starting from pole position, the Hitech GP racer made a comfortable start to lead his nearest challengers, Carlin’s Ugo Ugochukwu and Louis Sharp, on the first run through Allard.
From there, he gradually extended his advantage to some 1.2 seconds before the safety car was forced to intervene. Significantly for the championship, one of the two cars in trouble was Dunne’s chief title rival, Ollie Gray, the other Dunne’s Hitech team-mate Eduardo Coseteng.
With both cars needing recovery down at the Complex, Dunne’s advantage was wiped out. He expertly managed the restart to retain the race lead but came under increasing fire from Ugochukwu in the closing laps.
The McLaren junior came within 0.4 seconds, but an opportunity to pass never presented itself, and he was forced to settle for second. Sharp kept a watching brief and, with a gap back to fourth-placed Aiden Neate (Phinsys by Argenti), settled for the final spot on the podium.
For Dunne, victory means a tenth win of the season, and ties him level in the record books with Zane Maloney and Jamie Caroline for most victories in a single season. With Gray retiring, he also extends his lead to 91 points in the championship standings.
Daniel Guinchard (Argenti) rounded out the top five after an intense, race-long battle with JHR Developments ace Joseph Loake. Loake was able to squeeze ahead through the Club chicane on the opening tour, but that move put him off-line and Guinchard was able to re-pass.
From there, the two ran side-by-side up Woodham Hill on more than one occasion, but the Mercedes-AMG F1 junior did enough to hold position.
Edward Pearson (Virtuosi Racing) had enjoyed a career-best qualifying of fourth, but bogged down at the start and dropped to seventh after the opening exchanges. He came under pressure from Oliver Stewart (Hitech) in the closing laps, and the Scot executed a move to claim seventh.
Adam Fitzgerald (Argenti) was ninth behind Pearson, with Virtuosi’s Michael Shin moving forward to round out the points-paying positions in tenth.
JHR’s Georgi Dimitrov was next ahead of team-mate Noah Lisle, Chris Dittmann Racing duo Jack Sherwood and Divy Nandan, then Hitech GP’s Daniel Mavlyutov. Gray and Coseteng were the only non-finishers, with 15 cars making to the chequered flag.
The weekend continues with the second race at 17:15 BST. Stewart will start from reverse grid pole, with Fitzgerald alongside.
To view the full result, click here to view.