F4 U.S.: The gaps narrow between the first-place contenders in the championship title battle!
7 - 9 October 2022 – The second-last round of the F4 U.S. Championship took place on the VIRginia International Raceway circuit. Ryan Shehan (#66 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport), Bryson Morris (#39 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport) and Noah Ping (#65 Velocity Racing Development) shared the victories in the three races. The gap in the battle for the championship title between the leader Lochie Hughes (#6 Jay Howard Driver Development) and Bryson Morris has narrowed.
Gabriel Fonseca at the wheel of the #76 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4 topped the time sheets in free practice setting the fastest lap in a time of 1:56.531s. In the afternoon, another Ligier JS F4 run by Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport #39 in the hands of Bryson Morris set pole position for the first race of the weekend. Morris, second in the provisional overall classification, dialled in the fastest lap in qualifying in 1:56.812s.
Race 1: Ryan Shehan's last-gasp victory
The Ligier JS F4s got off to a flying start on a cold track with Bryson Morris (#39) taking the lead from his rivals. A yellow flag was quickly shown after a collision followed by a suspension breakage on #6 entered by Jay Howard Driver Development and driven by championship leader, Lochie Hughes. On the restart, Morris held on to first place, but his team-mate Ryan Shehan in #66 entered by Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport pipped him on the final lap to snatch victory!
“I honestly didn't know that was the last lap,” said Ryan Shehan. “We had the restart and I had stayed in second, but then I got a really good draft on the back straight and I made the move. It was a bit of a hectic race, but I'm glad to come out on top.”
For the full article on race 1, CLICK HERE.
Race 2: Bryson Morris wins for the third time this season
Race 2 got off to an action-packed start! Noah Ping who qualified second in the #65 Velocity Racing Development Ligier JS F4 lost control of the car in the first corner bringing out a yellow flag. On the restart, Andre Castro in #8 run by Future Star Racing took the lead before being passed next time round by Bryson Morris (#39). Although Morris came under threat from Lochie Hughes, he managed to fend off his rival and went on to score his third victory of the season.
“It was a good race,” said Bryson Morris after climbing from the car. “It was a bit of a sketchy restart, but I was able to get by and to the lead at a good time. Then, luckily, they started battling behind me and that was enough for me to open up a gap and just bring it home.”
For the full article on race 2, CLICK HERE.
Race 3: Noah Ping wins the last race of the weekend in Virginia
The third and last race of the weekend was held on Sunday. The two leaders in the #76 and #98 Ligier JS F4s (Louka Saint-Jean, Jay Howard Driver Development) collided and Noah Ping at the wheel of #65 run by Velocity Racing Development took advantage of this to grab first place, which he held till the chequered flag recording his third win since the start of the championship.
“It was a bit chaotic,” said Noah Ping after the race. “We were warned in our drivers meeting to take it safe this morning. After the safety car, there was some oil out on the track; I spun my tires when we went full-course yellow. It was right on line, so you almost had to run the wet line. The cold weather didn't help, either. There were a lot of variables out there.”
For the full article on race 3, CLICK HERE.
The final round of the championship will take place on the Circuit of the Americas in Austin between 4 - 6 November.
For more information about the Ligier JS F4, CLICK HERE.