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Palmer ends 2015 season with 12th BRDC F4 win of the year

Sunday, September 27 2015

Will Palmer took a lights-to-flag victory in the final race of the 2015 Duo BRDC Formula 4 Championship, with this year's title holder claiming his 12th win of the year. He came home ahead of Harri Newey and Tom Jackson, with the duo claiming second and third behind Palmer in the overall standings respectively.

It was an all HHC Motorsport front-row as Will Palmer lined up on pole position ahead of his stable mate Harri Newey. Whilst Palmer had secured the championship at Donington Park in the previous round, the fight for second and third in the standings continued with Newey, Tom Jackson, Ciaran Haggerty and Rodrigo Fonseca all involved in the battle.

As the lights went out, both Palmer and Newey made clean getaways but Ecurie Ecosse Young Driver Haggerty was swallowed up by cars behind as he made a slow start from third. It was the Chris Dittmann Racing car of Jackson who was most able to take advantage and he leapt up the order from sixth to take third into Paddock Hill Bend.

The 19 cars in the BRDC F4 field made it through the first few corners without incident but heading into Clearways, Chris Mealin, Omar Ismail and Fernando Urrutia all made contact with each other, putting the trio into retirement on the opening lap. The safety car was deployed to enable the marshals to clear up the incident and the rest of the pack was neutralised.

In the battle for second and third, Newey was set to take the runner-up spot with Jackson's lightning start putting him in the box seat to claim third. After a number of laps with the safety car circulating at the head of the field, it pulled off and Palmer made a strong restart at the front. Further back, Lanan Racing's Jack Bartholomew and Hillspeed's Ameya Vaidyanathan ran in close order as the Lewes racer tried to overtake the Indian for ninth.

Palmer got his head down in the middle stages of the race and began opening up the gap to Newey behind. A succession of fastest laps saw his advantage increase to over three seconds as he hunted down his 12th success of the year. Newey meanwhile was coming under pressure from Jackson, who had managed to escape the attentions of Rodrigo Fonseca behind. The Maidstone racer trailed Newey by just 0.467s at one point before he dropped back as the race moved into the final stages.

South African Sisa Ngebulana was driving a strong race in fifth but he had a trail of cars behind him including Jack Lang, Jordan Albert, Haggerty, Vaidyanathan and Bartholomew. However, the HHC Motorsport man was able to defend stoutly and hold on to the position.

As the field headed on to its final lap, the order remained the same and Palmer took the chequered flag 5.665s ahead of Newey, with Jackson only three tenths behind in third. The top-three in the race would also prove to be the top trio in the championship standings and they were firstly presented with their race trophies by BRDC member Grahame White, before receiving their championship trophies from Duo BRDC Formula 4 Series Director Jonathan Palmer.

By winning the 2015 Duo BRDC Formula 4 title, Will Palmer secured the championship prize package which consists of £35,000 cash, a GP3 test drive with ART Grand Prix and a special Pirelli award of €50,000 if he graduates to the GP3 Series.

The race also marked the last appearance of the Ralph Firman-designed BRDC F4 car which will be replaced from the 2015 Autumn Trophy onwards by the all-new Tatuus-Cosworth car. The Autumn Trophy gets underway with the first four races at Snetterton on November 7/8.

Duo BRDC Formula 4 - Brands Hatch Indy - Race three

1. Will Palmer, HHC Motorsport, 24 Laps
2. Harri Newey, HHC Motorsport, +5.665s
3. Tom Jackson, Chris Dittmann Racing, +5.971s
4. Rodrigo Fonseca, Lanan Racing, +8.390s
5. Sisa Ngebulana, HHC Motorsport, +16.055s
6. Jack Lang, Lang Sport/Gorse Motors, +16.548s
7. Jordan Albert, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +16.793s
8. Ciaran Haggerty, Ecurie Ecosse/GBR, +17.199s
9. Ameya Vaidyanathan, Hillspeed, +17.802s
10. Jack Bartholomew, Lanan Racing, +17.892s
11. Faisal Al Zubair, Hillspeed, +20.412s
12. Hernan Fallas, Hillspeed, +21.691s
13. Zubair Hoque, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +23.132s
14. Joe Stables, JR Racing, +29.193s
15. Akhil Rabindra, Douglas Motorsport, +31.647s
DNF. James Reveler, 23 Racing, 21 Laps
DNF. Chris Mealin, Lanan Racing, 0 Laps
DNF. Omar Ismail, Chris Dittmann Racing, 0 Laps
DNF. Fernando Urrutia, Douglas Motorsport, 0 Laps