Formula 4 enjoys entertaining return as part of SA Championships

Tuesday 07 May, 2024
Photos: Bob Taylor and SpeedShots Photography
The FIA Formula 4 Australian Championship kicked off its 2024 season at Shell V-Power Motorsport Park over the weekend with Jimmy Piszyck dominating the opening round.
Part of the Motorsport Australia South Australian Motor Racing Championship, there was plenty of anticipation for the return of Formula 4 in Australia, with the category enjoying three races over the course of the weekend.
Taking out top honours for the season opener was South Australian Jimmy Piszyck, who enjoyed a clean sweep of wins.
Starting off with qualifying on pole by ninth tenths of a second over AGI Sport teammate Nicholas Stati, Piszyck converted his position into the victory by leading every lap and crossing the line more than a second ahead of Jam Motorsport’s Blake Purdie, who passed Stati on the opening lap.

It was an unchanged top three for race two as Piszyck again led every lap before eventually charging out to a six-second win over Purdie, while Stati finished a further 11 seconds off.
Piszyck completed his clean sweep with a dominant nine second victory in the final race, only this time it was Stati who crossed the line next. Rounding out the top three was Seth Gilmore.
Although Purdie dropped down to fifth, he had still done enough in the opening two races to score a runner-up placing for the round, just edging out Stati and Gilmore by five points.
Gilmore ended the weekend as the highest placed rookie though, while Jam Motorsport’s Mark Rosser took top honours in the Master class.

MARC Cars Australia Racing Series also held two one-hour races at the event.
Taking out the round victory was Queenslander Geoffrey Taunton, who finished in second place behind Tasmanian Jackson Shaw in the opening race before picking up the win in the second outing after Shaw failed to finish.
Two podiums for Adam Hargraves was enough to seal him second place for the weekend.
Boasting the largest entry list for the weekend was the Circuit Excel Trophy Series where 33 competitors battled it out across three races, however no one was a match for Joel Johnson, who won every race.
While Johnson was a cut above the rest, the battle for second went right down the wire as Aaron Oliver pipped Isaac Sparks in the final race to seal a runner-up finish.

There was another clean sweep in the Circuit Excel Masters as Nick Scaife won all three outings over Shaun Pannowitch.
Amongst the remaining categories, there was just one more perfect weekend, with John Paul Drake picking up three wins from three races in the SA Prototype Championship, beating Simon Gardiner and Andrew McKee. Two podiums and a win was enough for Ian Eldridge to win class three.
Behind the wheel of the MG Midget, Victorian Michael Trathen was victorious in the combined MG Racing and Sports Sedan category, beating a decent field of 23 cars.

Trathen was the only driver to finish on the podium in all three races, as Jason Holmes and Kim Cole rounded out the weekend’s top three.
The next round of the Motorsport Australia South Australian Motor Racing Championship will be at Shell V-Power Motorsport Park on 24-26 May, while the FIA Formula 4 Australian Championship’s next round will also return to The Bend on 7-9 June.
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