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  • Chris Ashby

James Higgins Scores Hard-Fought Podium At Donington Park Opener


James Higgins made a strong start to his 2024 ROKiT F4 British Championship certified by FIA season at Donington Park last weekend (27-28 April) as he scored a hard-fought podium finish.


Making the switch to multiple champions Rodin Motorsport for his sophomore campaign in the single-seater series, Higgins underlined his credentials as one to watch by powering his way to second place in the opening contest.


Aiming to build on what had been a productive pre-season of testing, the BRDC Rising Star arrived at the Leicestershire venue eager to make his mark and he carried his promising pace from Thursday into qualifying on Saturday morning.


Despite battling the cold temperatures, the teenage racer featured towards the summit of the leaderboard from the get-go and duly clinched pole position for race one after setting the second fastest lap time.


Lining up on the front row of the grid, Higgins enjoyed a strong launch but couldn’t match the fast-start Deagen Fairclough on the run down to turn one, forcing him to slot into second place as the field plunged down the Craner Curves.


Mounting a challenge on Fairclough during the opening exchanges, the second-year driver soon settled into a groove and was wheel-perfect on his way to netting a first piece of silverware this season.


Heavy and persistent rainfall caused delays to the timetable on Sunday morning which ultimately meant that only the reverse grid encounter was to be run.


Starting 11th, Higgins showcased his overtaking prowess in style as he carved his way through the order to ultimately take the chequered flag in fourth. Had it not been for a safety car neutralising the field for a handful of laps, Higgins could have snared a second podium of the weekend.


James Higgins: “To come away with a podium and a top five finish is a fantastic way to start the season. Coming into the campaign the sole aim is to be a title contender and this is a strong start to doing just that!


“We had really good pace in qualifying and although I’d have liked a double pole, taking a pole and second place wasn’t so bad. Race one my start wasn’t the best but we absolutely maximised the rest of the race to bring it home in second.


“That reverse grid race was pretty frantic if I’m honest. Starting outside the top ten made things a little difficult but the car felt phenomenal and I was able to just crack on and make some mega moves.


“Overall we’ve made a really strong start to the season to be second in the points and it’s the perfect building block to push forward with. Roll on Brands Hatch!”


Brands Hatch plays host to the second meeting of the 2024 ROKiT F4 Championship certified by FIA, with Rounds 4, 5 & 6 set to play out across the 11-12 May.


Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.

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