- Chris Ashby
Phinsys By Argenti Storm To Victory At Brands Hatch
Phinsys by Argenti opened its account in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA - powered by Ford EcoBoost in style at Brands Hatch this past weekend (June 26/27) as Matias Zagazeta scored a sensational maiden victory in race three.
On what proved to be a pulsating third event of the 2021 season for the single-seater category, Zagazeta served up a virtuoso performance in the final contest around the 1.2-mile Indy circuit to top the podium for the first time.
Having made a promising start to the campaign with podium finishes at Thruxton and Snetterton, the Banbury-based squad announced an expanded line-up for Brands Hatch with Aiden Neate joining Zagazeta, Marcos Flack and Eduardo Coseteng.
Clocking plenty of mileage during Friday’s two practice sessions, the Argenti quartet showcased plenty of front-running speed in what turned out to be a frenetic qualifying on Saturday morning.
In a change to the weekend format, qualifying decided the grid for races two and three, whilst race one’s starting positions were based on the full reverse grid.
Zagazeta led the line for Argenti with a superlative lap which placed him third, pipping team-mate Coseteng who was fourth. Neate posted the ninth best time on his debut whilst Flack was hot on his heels in 12th.
With the grid being turned upside down for the opening encounter of the weekend, Neate’s maiden British F4 foray continued to get better as he charged to sixth from tenth. Zagazeta was also a driver on the move as he charged from the penultimate row to 12th.
Unfortunately, both Flack and Coseteng found themselves in the wars and out of the race on lap seven after being caught up in an incident.
Race two proved to be one of attrition as the Argenti squad endured mixed fortunes in a thrilling wet-dry-wet contest. Opting to run wet tyres, all four cars found themselves in the thick of the action, with Zagazeta starring once again.
Along with Coseteng, the Peruvian made his way to the front to lead the early laps before the slick-shod cars came to the fore. Dropping down the order, late rain brought Zagazeta back into play and saw him just miss out on the podium in fourth. Coseteng was 11th, Flack 13th and Neate finished 16th after recovering from a spin on lap one.
Race three proved to be Zagazeta’s crowning glory as he produced a commanding lights-to-flag victory to score the first win of his British F4 career - live on ITV3. Starting on the front row, the second-year racer launched into the lead and never looked back, as he built up a healthy lead on his way to the chequered flag.
Behind, Neate and Coseteng both produced hard-fought drives to cross the line ninth and tenth respectively, whilst Flack brought the curtain down on his weekend in 16th.
Michael Meadows, Team Manager:“It has been a fantastic weekend and if I’m honest it has been coming. We’ve shown glimpses of speed at Thruxton and Snetterton but things hadn’t fallen our way, thankfully they did here.
“Matias was brilliant all weekend and he did a lot of the hard work in qualifying on Saturday. In that final race he didn’t make a mistake, got his head down and found a rhythm. I’m over the moon for him as it will be a great boost to his confidence.
“I feel a bit for Eduardo because he has shown he had great pace all weekend too but the damage he sustained in race one seemed to affect him for the remaining two races. Aiden had a good debut though and will only get better, as will Marcos who showed good speed and is always improving.
“We’ve got a nice break before Oulton Park now so we will take stock of things and then look to carry this momentum into the rest of the summer.”
The F4 British Championship certified by FIA - powered by Ford EcoBoost continues on July 31/August 1, with Rounds 10, 11 & 12 set to play out around Oulton Park.
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.