Six podiums for YRDA drivers at Brands Hatch

April 3, 2017

British F4

The British F4 and Ginetta Junior Championships got underway last weekend at the Brands Hatch Indy circuit and present were six Young Racing Driver Academy Drivers (YRDA) who between them managed an impressive six podiums over the space of five races. Here’s a report on all six drivers.

British F4 Championship:

Ayrton Simmons – 2nd (championship)

Ayrton got his season off to a solid start with his very first win in British F4 in race two. His weekend didn’t get off to the best start with a red flag not allowing him to improve on 7th in qualifying. In race one he was unable to improve on that position despite his best efforts in trying to pass Billy Monger who valiantly defended. However, that result gave him the reverse grid pole in race two and he went on to win comfortably by just under five seconds! It was milestone passed for Ayrton who well definitely take many more wins this year. In race three Ayrton was back to 7th on the grid and moved forward this time to finish in a solid 5th place. The combined results have left him in an impressive 2nd leaving Brands after three rounds.

Oscar Piastri – 3rd

Despite this being his very first race weekend in British F4 Oscar was out of the blocks fast in qualifying and secure himself a front row start for race one, just missing out on pole by 0.096 seconds! Wheel spin off the line saw Oscar lose that 2nd at the start of race one, but he fought back to 3rd and almost challenged for the lead only to go on and finish on the podium in his very first race! The reverse grid race was always going to be hard to make places especially with some quick drivers up ahead, but Oscar did well to stay out of trouble and finish 6th. The Australian ended the weekend back on the podium though and was just 1.6 seconds back from Jamie Caroline at the flag, all of which has left him 3rd in the championship leaving Brands.

Alex Quinn – 5th

Despite limited testing and a late announcement that he’d be returning to the championship for the first four rounds, Alex Quinn showed no signs of the above and had a very impressive debut weekend with Arden. After qualifying 3rd, Alex was straight into 2nd in race one and showed great maturity in taking his time to chase Caroline down. Once there he was unable to pass, but came very close and set the fastest lap! Race two was tough for Alex as he got caught up in an almighty battle for 5th eventually having to settle for 7th. But it was business resumed in race three as he got his second podium of the weekend and his second fastest lap!

Jamie Sharp – 15th

New driver, new team. Jamie sharp was certainly at Brands Hatch to learn as many lessons as possible not only for himself, but for the brand new Sharp Motorsport Team too. He certainly did that! Jamie finished 14th in race one with the aim purely to finish. However, moving into Sunday Jamie made steady progress finishing 13th in race two and 12th in race three! In that second race Jamie was just three tenths off the fastest lap and in race three he matched the former World Karting Champion, Logan Sargeant for pace! Impressive progress for one weekend.

Ginetta Junior Championship:

Tom Wood – 4th

Tom Wood had mixed fortunes in the opening weekend of the season. A disappointing qualifying left Tom down in 10th place, but he recovered in style in race one to charge through the field and finish on the podium! What a way to get a season underway. However, race two saw some harsh luck for Tom, whilst in a fierce battle for 6th place Tom worked his way through smartly only to receive a five second penalty for ‘exceeding track limits’ which undone all of his hard work and left him 8th post-race. It’s a shame for Tom, but leaving Brands 4th in the championship is a good start.

Tom Canning – 13th

Like Tom Wood, Tom Canning had his share of bad luck but for a first weekend in car racing overall it was very positive! Tom qualified 15th for race one which threw up perhaps to worst conditions for someone in their first car race with a heavy shower leaving a wet track with a slightly drying line. Tom did what was required by staying on the track and came through to finish 12th. However, race two saw some unfortunate luck for Tom after recovering from a bad start Tom was challenging for a top ten finish, but an incident ahead going into the last corner saw Tom having to take to the gravel in avoidance all of which heavily delayed him and dropped him right down the order. Tom managed to recover to 15th place in the remaining laps.

Full results:

British F4


Ayrton Simmons

Race 1 – 7th Race 2 – 1st Race 3 – 5th

Championship – 2nd


Oscar Piastri

Race 1 – 3rd Race 2 – 6th Race 3 – 2nd

Championship – 3rd


Alex Quinn

Race 1 – 2nd Race 2 – 7th Race 3 – 3rd

Championship – 5th


Jamie Sharp

Race 1 – 14th Race 2 – 13th Race 3 – 12th

Championship – 15th


Tom Wood

Race 1 – 3rd Race 2 – 8th 

Championship – 4th


Tom Canning

Race 1 – 12th Race 2 – 15th

Championship – 13th