First race of the ADAC Formula 4 at Lausitzring this weekend didn’t give the drivers much time for racing, since a red flag stole a lot of the driving time.
Lirim Zendeli once again had grabbed Pole Position for the first race on the Saturday.
Frederik Vesti from P3 got a good start and already had second before heading into Turn 1, when he out-accelerated Mick Wishofer, who started the race from second position.
David Schumacher and Charles Weerts had a contact in Turn 1, where Schumacher tried an overtaking manouvre. Both drivers went off the track but could rejoin the race.
There was huge drama later on the second lap, when eight cars crashed at the same corner. Lirim Zendeli was lucky to make it through the gravel, but Frederik Vesti, Oliver Caldwell, Gianluca Petecof, Lucas Alecco Roy, Niklas Krütten, Joey Alders, Tom Beckhaüser and Sebastian Estner weren’t that lucky. All these cars except Caldwell and Estner had quite severe suspension damages, so the mechanics will all be very busy repairing them before the race at 16.40 later today.
It turned out to be Leon Köhler was the reason behind the oil. He had a clash with Aaron Di Comberti on the first lap of the race, which damaged his gearbox, so oil was leaking onto the track. And since there was no oil flags out, the drivers had no chance of avoiding it. And it was pure luck that more cars weren’t involved.
Race control decided to red flag the race, so the oil could be cleaned up.
The race distance was reduced to 8 minutes due to the time consuming recovery work.
The race was restarted behind the Safety Car, but the clock started instantly, so the drivers only really had 5 minutes of racing left to do.
The new standings at the restart was Lirim Zendeli, Liam Lawson, Enzo Fittipaldi, Mick Wishofer and Konsta Lappalainen.
David Schumacher and Ido Cohen almost hit each other going into Turn 1, but both made it through.
Leonardo Lorandi made a nice overtaking manoeuvre on Andreas Estner in the fight for 6th. The positions however was switched again at the chequered flag.
Just one and a half minutes before the chequered flag, disaster struck Zendeli. He suddenly came to a stop on the track, so Liam Lawson could just blow past him and take the victory in a very strange race.
Enzo Fittipaldi finished second, while Mick Wishofer took third.
We lost half of the field due to crashes or technical issues, so only 10 cars saw the chequered flag.
There will be a lot of busy mechanics working for the next 5 hours, to the all the cars ready for Race 2, later this afternoon.