PREMA Racing left a dominant impression in the first round of the German Formula 4 ADAC Championship at Spa-Francorchamps. With three wins and two complete exclusions from the podium, the team had an extremely positive first performance of the year at the classic Belgian venue.
Andrea Kimi Antonelli was the leading driver since qualifying, when he took pole in both qualifying sessions. He later dominated Race 1 and 2, before maximizing his chances in Race 3. The Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team junior started his weekend from P8 on the reverse grid and finished his weekend in fourth place, saving valuable points and focusing. to make no mistakes in a hard-fought heat.
Rafael Camara was equally impressive, making his first career start in Europe and quickly proving competitive. The Brazilian Ferrari Driver Academy racer came in second in Race 1 and 2 and gained more experience. He then put it all together by storming from P7 on the grid to victory in Race 3 and coming out victorious in a frantic battle.
Charlie Wurz, James Wharton and Conrad Laursen all managed to take podiums by taking their chances, although they all paid the exhaustion price. Laursen collided with Wurz in Race 2, while Wharton, who also made his first European single-seater start, was given a DNF due to a flat tire in Race 1 before rebounding to P3 in Race 2.
“We have learned quite a lot this weekend and we are confident going into the first round of the Italian Championship on what we need to do and improve next time on the track.”
ANDREA KIMI ANTONELLIA
“It was a good weekend. Working with the team, we quickly found a good set-up and were fast right away. On Friday I took pole in Q1 and Q2. In race 1 I didn’t have the best start because I lost P1, but the pace was there so I managed to recover it and cruise to the win. In race 2 the start was much better, and with my contenders competing with each other I pulled a pretty big gap to score the win. In race 3 I started P8 with the inverted grid but despite a good start I made a few mistakes and settled for P4. I am quite satisfied and I am looking forward to the opening race of the Italian Championship in Imola.”
“The first weekend in Europe is over! I come away with a lot of things learned and a lot of things to work on before we get back on the track. I want to thank the team for all the support as we focus on Imola to come back stronger.”
“A pretty difficult weekend when you look at the results, not so smooth sailing. In qualifying we struggled a bit, but in the end we were okay with P4 in Race 1. It was the maximum I could get out of it, starting in P6 with a good pace for all the cars in the team up front. Going higher than that would have been difficult. In race 2 I made a misjudgment and broke my front wing. Furthermore, the pace and the car felt very good “The DNF made me start at the back for the last race. I came from P19 all the way to P3, it was great. Super happy with Race 3, while Race 2 was not what I wanted. We definitely have the pace to be on top, we just have to keep working. To race with so many competitive teammates was fun and also a great learning experience. †
“I think it was a good weekend, we were always at the top. I also learned a lot and the team did a great job. Now we just try to get stronger for the next race.”
The team is now looking forward to the opening race of the 2022 Italian Championship at Imola.