Devlin DeFrancesco kept his F4 British Championship title hopes alive after taking his tenth podium of 2016 at Silverstone (September 17-18).
The Carlin youngster stormed to third place in Race One after carving his way from sixth on the grid and managing to come out on top of the intra-team battle between himself, James Pull and Petru Florescu.
“We qualified in P6, which isn’t exactly where we wanted to be, but at least I was in the mix and new I could make up a few positions,” Devlin said. “We had good pace throughout Race One, I was the only Carlin driver on the podium during the weekend, but you only have to look at the lap times to see how incredibly close it is!”
Starting the second race from seventh Devlin again made up positions despite running on used tyres, whilst the rest of the field started on brand new rubber.
The 16-year-old crossed the line in fifth place, but was much happier with the pace of his Carlin machine. “In Race Two we were actually quicker than we were in the first one,” Devlin explained. “Despite being on older tyres than the guys around us, I was still able to challenge and was in a good battle with a few drivers, I’m pretty pleased with my performance.”
In the final race of the weekend, Devlin was locked in a race-long battle with team-mate Max Fewtrell, but again the Canadian came out on top, finishing fourth to round off a positive weekend.
“Race Three was a lot of fun!” said Devlin. “I was involved in a big fight with Max and it was great to be able to come back on top. We were consistently around where we wanted to be all weekend, obviously the aim is always to win, but we definitely made steps forward from Rockingham here.”
Devlin now sits in fourth place in the Drivers’ Championship and is 49 points off the top with a total of 75 available in the final round at Brands Hatch.
Although Devlin concedes that he is a long shot for the title, he stressed that anything can happen in this tight championship. “I guess I am a bit of an outsider now for the title,” he continued, “but Brands GP will suit us well and it’s racing so anything can happen.
“One retirement could completely change the outcome so we just have to make sure we’re right at the front to make the most of it.
“Finally I’d just like to say that the Carlin boys did a fantastic job especially my engineer Steve Colbert. All the problems we had before the summer break have been resolved and I’m very pleased with our progress.”
Next for Devlin will be Imola (September 24-25) for round six of the F4 Italian Championship, before returning to the F4 British Championship a week later at Brands Hatch (October 1-2) for the season finale.