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A Wilde win for Europe; Nazim and Cao win for Asia

FORMULA 4: The Formula 4 South East Asia 2017-18 Championship – fueled by Petron – supported the Asian Le Mans ‘12 Hours of Buriram’ event with a 100,000-strong grandstand on Thailand’s Children’s day.


The Phuket News

Monday 15 January 2018, 09:48AM


Racers vie for places at the F4SEA helds at the Buriram International Circuit this weekend.
Racers vie for places at the F4SEA helds at the Buriram International Circuit this weekend.

Ugo De Wilde, at 15 years and a couple of days old was the youngest driver in the F4SEA championship but with more than 60 single-seater races he has abundant race craft and is already a wise and experienced competitor.

The Brussels native was pitted against some of the best up-and-coming Asian drivers and managed to win the Event Champion’s Award, one point ahead of the F4SEA Championship leader Daniel Cao.

“It was difficult mostly, I made a bad start and the other drivers out there were really fast and I had my work cut out if I was to take the flag first” explained the French-speaking Ugo.

“But it was Daniel Cao and Nazim Azman who were really, really fast. I’m consistently checking my side mirrors for them. This level of competition is great. It keeps the racing tight and always makes F4SEA really exciting and competitive.”

The Asian rookies made it very difficult for the young European in car #27, yet the young racer came in pole in qualifying, clocking up a time of 1:42:336.

Kuala Lumpur-native Nazim Azman kept pace with the Belgian during testing and explained, “the times were changing a lot in the first session, first to set the pace was Kane then it was Cao’s turn and then Ugo found his way. It’s the four of us who are consistently fighting for the podium. If you can’t tell who’s going to win, then that’s good racing.”

Nazim had a perfect start for the last race and an excellent restart after the safety car came out which he put down to watching and learning from F1 drivers in Sepang.

With the drivers constantly swapping positions in every race, this weekend was nothing short of spectacular with relentless edge-of-your-seat action and a photo finish from Ugo and Cao.

The train of six cars racing one metre apart for all the six races of the weekend brought the Asia Le Mans Series drivers out to watch from the pit wall!

The Chinese racer Cao could almost taste the victory of Race 2, but it was Ugo who crept up and overtook the two-time event champion on the last corner of the last lap, narrowly pipping him for the flag.

“I just can’t believe it. I’m speechless - Ugo was so quick he came from nowhere. Just one single point separates me and Ugo for the overall event championship,” said Cao in disbelief.

This type of close racing is just part and parcel of the never-ending action F4 SEA provides our racers.

The Event Champion scoring objective is to get the lowest number of points per race (i.e. the winner gets one point). Cao was second (one point ahead of Ugo) after earning 14 points from his single race victory, three runner-up spots and one third place.

In third and fourth positions were Malaysian Nazim Azman and Kane Shepherd of Thailand with 17 and 21 points respectively. Kane’s compatriot, Cutter Sasakorn collected 32 points.

Ben and Sam Grimes settled for sixth and seventh respectively with 35 points for Ben and one more for his younger sibling.

“I’m extremely satisfied with the outcome of the racing this weekend. It was great to be able to compete here in South East Asia. Even though I didn’t get to finish Race 6 given my incident with Cutter, it was just an accident and I’m really very happy to go home with the ‘F4SEA Event Champion’s trophy,” said the F4SEA overall event champion Ugo de Wilde.

Event Champion Results

Pos

No.

Nationality

Driver

1

2

3

4

5

6

Pts

1

27

Belgian

Ugo De Wild

3

1

1

1

1

6

13

2

55

China

Daniel Cao

1

2

4

2

3

2

14

3

17

Malaysia

Nazim Azman

5

4

2

3

2

1

17

4

3

Thailand

Kane Shepherd

2

3

3

5

5

3

21

5

45

Thailand

Cutter Sasakorn

6

6

5

4

4

7

32

6

19

Philippines

Ben Grimes

7

5

6

7

6

4

35

7

33

Philippines

Sam Grimes

4

7

7

6

7

5

36

 

 

 

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