Charles Weerts (17, Belgium) secured his first victory of the season at the final ADAC Formula 4 weekend at Hockenheim, and, aided by team-mates Liam Lawson (16, New Zealand) and Frederik Vesti (16, Denmark), ensured that Van Amersfoort Racing locked out the top three places. David Schumacher (16, Germany, US Racing CHRS) also had reason to celebrate - the 16-year-old was again best rookie in sixth place, thus increasing his lead on Niklas Krütten (15, Germany, ADAC Berlin-Brandenburg eV) in the classification for newcomers to formula racing to 30 points.
"I'm really delighted with this first win. My hard work during the year with my engineers and team has paid off today. Yes, we've had some excellent results throughout the whole year, but there was always a little something missing. Everything went well today, and I'm really happy to have won," said Weerts. When asked about the team classification, the young Belgian added: "Of course, it was also a great victory for the team, because we are still in contention to win the team competition, so it's terrific that we finished first, second and third today."
Schumacher was pleased with his P6: "I hope I can wrap up the title in this next race, so that I don't then have to risk everything in the last race. I hung back and didn't take any risks to get past Fittipaldi. At any rate, I hope I can pull it off. The race was exciting, especially over the first few laps. It wasn't easy, because we were a little down on grip to begin with, but the pace was great towards the end, and the race was a lot of fun."
Mick Wishofer (18, Austria, US Racing CHRS) and Enzo Fittipaldi (17, USA/Brazil, Prema Theodore Racing) came home behind Van Amersfoort's three drivers - Weerts, Lawson and Vesti. Schumacher in sixth place finished in front of champion Lirim Zendeli (18, Germany, US Racing CHRS), Petr Ptaček (15, Czech Republic, US Racing CHRS), rookie Joey Alders (19, Netherlands, Van Amersfoort Racing) and Oliver Caldwell (16, Great Britain, Prema Theodore Racing). Schumacher's rival for the Rookie title, Niklas Krütten, had to settle for twelfth place. Schumacher is now on 309 points and ahead of Krütten (279 points) in the Rookie classification.
As the lights turned green, 18-year-old Zendeli immediately put pressure on pole-sitter Lawson. He squeezed past on the approach to the first turn, but the New Zealander counter-attacked. Leon Köhler (19, Germany, ADAC Berlin-Brandenburg e.V.) then retired following a spin, and Lucas Alecco Roy (21, Monaco, Van Amersfoort Racing) also spun off but was able to continue.
Zendeli finally overtook Lawson and grabbed the lead, but the new champion had to serve a drive-through penalty on Lap 7. The race director decreed that Zendeli had broken the rules at the start, and the young German fell way down to the rear of the field as a result. Up front, meanwhile, the three Van Amersfoort team-mates were scrapping for the lead. Weerts won through with a brilliant move on Lawson.
Racing will continue for the formula racing juniors this Saturday afternoon with the penultimate race of the season at 5.30 pm, in which Lawson will again be in pole position. Enzo Fittipaldi, grandson of two-time Formula 1 world champion Emerson Fittipaldi, will line up in P2. Lirim Zendeli will start from P3.
SPORT1 is broadcasting the races from this final race weekend of the ADAC Formula 4 season live on TV and online at SPORT1.de. All races are also available as live stream with German and English commentary at adac.de/motorsport, on the Facebook page of the ADAC Formula 4 and at youtube.com/adac.