22 Aug Roberto Faria is the comeback kid at Thruxton
Last weekend Fortec’s British F4 team traveled to Thruxton with drivers Mariano Martinez and Roberto Faria for rounds 19, 20 and 21 of the championship.
The race weekend began with Friday’s practice sessions which allowed the drivers to get to grips with the 2.3560 mile track. The first session was undertaken in dry conditions whilst the latter saw the switch to wet tyres due to rain prior to the start. Both drivers performed well under the changing conditions with Faria getting a combined result of P11, whereas Mariano was P13.
Saturday was a busier day for the team with the challenge of qualifying and two races. Qualifying saw treacherous, drying conditions with Roberto sitting in third until a mistake at Seagrave with 8 minutes to go saw him slide across the wet grass and not be able to resume the session, resulting in the young Brazilian dropping to P11, whilst Mariano finished P13. Bright and dry track conditions followed as race one began with the drivers building upon their pace from earlier sessions. The Mexican driver Martinez gained two places and was battling for positions, eventually crossing the line in P11. #TeamFortec’s Brazilian driver Faria made some great moves to get up to seventh until contact going into the final chicane saw him drop down the order but still finishing in the points with a P10 finish.
The day culminated in race two of the championship as the crowds saw the drivers tackle the 11 turn track again with Mariano starting P11 on the grid, with Roberto P10. Both drivers had an excellent start with Mariano gaining a place early on with Faria impressively moving up to P8. This pace continued as both drivers continued to gain positions. While Martinez fought bravely for eighth he was unfortunately taken out by JHR driver Alex Walker with a couple of laps remaining, resulting in the British rookie getting penalty points on his licence. The Mexican managed to nurse his damaged car home in P10 while Roberto crossed the line in P7. Faria’s success also gained him a second place rookie podium as well as completing the second fastest lap of the race and the fastest rookie time.
The British F4 weekend came to a close with race three with the opening lap witnessing chaos as Faria unfortunately taken off the track early on by Arden driver Alex Connor, again resulting in a penalty points, however, Roberto was able to avoid a potential DNF whilst Martinez moved up into P10. Faria’s commendable driving ability was further showcased as he continued to rain in the pack ahead gaining places finishing P10, which was hailed as a ‘great comeback’ by the commentators. Faria’s performance also earned him a third place rookie podium whilst Martinez finished P11 respectively.
The team look forward to continuing the championship at Knockhill for rounds 22, 23 and 24.