Nicklas Nielsen celebrates first career victory

Hørning-born Nicklas Nielsen sovereign won the second race of the day, celebrating his first triumph in ADAC F4.

The 2016 Rookie champion started from pole position and was able to successfully defend his lead to the finish. “It was similar to the first race: I was fast and able to build a gap. In the end, however, it got tight again”, Nielsen told.

He was chased by his team-mate from last year, Felipe Drugovich (Van Amersfoort Racing), but “I enjoyed a good battle with him”, the Dane pointed out. After the first taste of racing in the previous run, the heat of the moment led to a pile-up in the first corner.

The worst damage experienced was by Neuhauser Racing’s Michael Waldherr whose left rear tyre was stuck on the car. The 20-year-old was forced to stop on track, causing a red flag. “As we were not able to repeat our good performance from testing in qualifying, the weekend results, especially on a track like Oschersleben, were pretty much determined since Friday. Not a perfect start, but the season is long and the motivation and belief in our potential remains unbroken”, summarised Waldherr.

Nicklas Nielsen celebrated his maiden ADAC F4 victory. Photo: Gruppe C GmbH/ ADAC Motorsport

When the rest of the field lined up, the running order from the lap before the red flag was reinstated. Nielsen was first, with Drugovich following in second and Fabio Scherer (US Racing) in third. Scherer kept a clear head in the chaos and was able to put himself into the lead before the red flag rule put him back down to third.

The race restarted behind the Safety Car with just 20 minutes left. The spectators were kept on the edge of their seats not only by the duels of Nielsen and Drugovich plus Scherer and Vips, as Kami Laliberté (Van Amersfoort Racing) and Jonathan Aberdein (Team Motopark) were seen driving side by side through the first few corners, fighting for positions. The Canadian got ahead and finished seventh with Aberdein behind in eighth.

Prema Powerteam drivers Juri Vips, Juan Manuel Correa and Marcus Armstrong took fourth to sixth, with Lirim Zendeli (Mücke Motorsport) and David Malukas on the last two point-scoring places; leaving Motopark’s Leonard Hoogenboom in an ungrateful 11th place.

Race winner Nicklas Nielsen (middle) with Felipe Drugovich (left) and Fabio Scherer as well as Rookie winner Mick Wishofer (on the very right). Photo: Gruppe C GmbH/ ADAC Motorsport

The second Danish driver, Langelund-born Frederik Vesti, came into the pits after losing his front wing, where his team Van Amersfoort Racing told him his race was over. Team Piro Sport Interdental’s Cedric Piro also experienced bad luck, parking his car in an emergency exit next to the track with five minutes of race action left.

A detailed discussion will surely happen at Mücke Motorsport after Sophia Flörsch pushed team-mate Oliver Söderström into the gravel trap in the first corner of the last lap, leaving the Swede unable to finish the race. Flörsch finished 13th while Söderström dropped to 21st.

Lechner Racing’s Mick Wishofer was the best Rookie in 14th place. “ADAC Formula 4 is a strong championship which is especially tough as a Rookie. But if I continue to work hard, I can definitely improve which is my aim”, he said.

Sunday is a new day that will provide the third and final chance to shine on the 3.696 km long circuit in Oschersleben, with race three starting at 11.45am local time.

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