19 Aug 2013
SEVENTH PODIUM ENABLES MORRIS TO RETAIN SECOND IN F4 STANDINGS
Championship front-runner Seb Morris retained second position in the BRDC Formula 4 standings at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit over the weekend, 17th/18th August, after racing to his seventh podium of the year in round 18 of the season.
As the title battle reaches a crucial stage, with only six races now remaining in the 2013 campaign, the 17-year-old Ginetta Ambassador was happy to round-out the sixth event of the season back on the rostrum. He was, though, somewhat frustrated after believing he had the chance to take his maiden F4 race victory in Sunday afternoon’s encounter.
Beginning the third of the Silverstone races from fourth place, Marford racer Seb made a fantastic start to move into third on the run to Copse and then closed-up behind second placed Jake Hughes to end lap one only 0.5 seconds shy of his title rival.
As the lead trio of Matty Graham, Hughes and Seb closed-up, the Welshman produced a great pass for second midway through lap three and then sized-up a potential move on Graham for the lead shortly after. Unfortunately, though, the slightest of contact resulted in a damaged front wing and nose cone for Seb and the delay led to a slip back to third where he remained to the finish.
“It’s good to be on the podium but quite frustrating too as I had the chance to win”, reflected the Welshman, “I made my move on [Matty] Graham too late and damaged my front wing, we should have had more out of the last race.
“We have lost some ground to [Jake] Hughes in the championship but we’ll never give up, we just need to keep pushing. Our car seems to be really good at the end of the weekend, we just need to find more pace at the start and then we’ll be right there. Everything is still all to play for.”
Despite suffering from suspected food poisoning ahead of Saturday’s qualifying session, Seb took seventh on the grid for the first race, round 16, and at the start of the encounter he held position off the line after a typically smooth getaway.
Circulating in a very tightly bunched pack of cars all queuing up behind fourth placed Gustavo Lima, Seb smartly gained two places on lap five by leap-frogging Jack Barlow as Lima dropped back down the order.
Running in fifth, the Hillspeed driver then sliced his way into the top four on the seventh lap and edged progressively closer to the podium – ending the race just 2.5 seconds shy. Post-race, however, he was given a five second penalty for a yellow flag infringement which dropped him to sixth.
Although the race one judicial decision was disappointing, the net result meant Seb actually started round 17 higher up the order on the ‘reverse grid’ than he would have. Lining-up in third position, the Abbey Gate College student made a good getaway from the second row but become embroiled in a very tight battle midway through the opening lap.
Coming under pressure from James Greenway and Barlow through Village and The Loop, Seb was momentarily pushed back to fourth place but onto Wellington Straight he was edged wide onto the grass which resulted in a drop to fifth.
While determined to get back into the podium placings, a lap four attack from Graham at The Loop led to a tangle which ultimately demoted Seb to ninth position. With hopes of a podium challenge wrecked, the British Racing Drivers’ Club ‘Rising Star’ tried to salvage as much as he could from the race and after taking eighth place on lap seven he managed to grab seventh on the eighth tour.
Rounds 19, 20 and 21 of the BRDC Formula 4 Championship will take place three weeks from now at Snetterton 300 Circuit in East Anglia. In the meantime, television highlights of this weekend’s action from Silverstone will be screened next Sunday, 25th August, on ITV4 and ITV4 HD at 18.00.
Provisional 2013 BRDC Formula 4 Championship Standings (after Rd18):
2nd Seb Morris, 305pts
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