Augie Soto-Schirripa had a perfect day at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR), going two-for-two in Formula 4 United States Championship Powered by Honda (F4 U.S.) competition. In his third F4 U.S. race weekend, the 23-year-old has now secured three wins and four podiums in just eight starts.
Notes of Interest:
- Augie Soto-Schirripa earned his third F4 U.S. win in just eight starts. Having skipped the last round at New Jersey Motorsports Park, it was his fourth consecutive podium after earning his first win in Round 8 at Mid-Ohio and then finishing second in Round 9.
- Luciano Martinez started from the pole for the first-time in his F4 U.S. career.
- Daniel Cará earned his third-career podium finish.
Rolling off sixth from the grid, Soto-Schirripa (No. 24 International Motorsport Ligier JS F4) set a solid pace to pick up two positions on the opening lap, and moved into third by the conclusion of lap two. Meanwhile, points leader Patrick Woods-Toth (No. 27 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4) rolled off the grid in second and worked his way around polesitter Luciano Martinez (No. 91 Scuderia Buell Ligier JS F4) by the time the field reached Turn 3. Woods-Toth then found himself under immense pressure from Alex Berg (No. 08 MySim.ca / Rohde & Liesenfeld / Easy Drift / Penn Elcom Online / Dae Systems Ligier JS F4), which allowed Soto-Schirripa to close in.
The three engaged in side-by-side battles, but remained running 1-2-3 with Woods-Toth out front, followed by Berg and Soto-Schirripa for nearly the first half of the race. Berg attempted a pass for the lead entering Turn 1 with 17 minutes left on the clock, but contact left him spinning through the grass and removed him from contention for the win. With Berg out of the picture, Soto-Schirripa picked up a half second to close within three-tenths of Woods-Toth before the full-course caution was displayed.
With just two minutes left on the clock, the race restarted, leading to a one-lap shootout to the checkered flag. Woods-Toth rolled off first with Soto-Schirripa filling his mirrors. Staying tight on his gearbox, Soto-Schirripa made one last run at the lead, drafting down the backstretch and completing the pass as they entered the Roller Coaster for the last time. With a clean pass, Soto-Schirripa sailed away to his second victory of the day in the Andy Scriven Memorial at the VIR SpeedTour.
As they crossed the line, Soto-Schirripa led Woods-Toth and Daniel Cará (No. 10 Tenuta Foppa & Ambrosi Ligier JS F4). Michael Costello (No. 19 Jay Howard Driver Development / CSU One Cure / Lucas Oil / LHP Ligier JS F4) and Kekai Hauanio (No. 29 N.E Where Transport Ligier JS F4) rounded out the top five.
READ MORE: Race 2 Provisional Results
“Oh, wow,” Soto-Schirripa exclaimed as he got out the car. “I had to be patient; I knew the last lap was when to make it happen. I didn’t send it in Turn 1, knowing that he was going to block. So, I tried to keep everyone behind me, knowing that my main goal was [Woods-Toth]. We got it done. I’m super happy for me, for the team—we put together a great car. We went out on used tires. It’s awesome—we’re dialed in. I thought I loved Mid-Ohio, but I think I love VIR more now.”
A series of post-race stewards’ decisions resulted in a 30-second penalty for Woods-Toth, as well as a 10-second penalty for Costello. The appeal period remains open until 8:00 a.m. ET on Sunday, October 8, after which any appeals will be heard and final results will be determined.
F4 U.S. will be back on track tomorrow to contest their final race of the weekend. Lights out for Race 3 is scheduled for 9:35 a.m. ET. For updates, follow the F4 U.S. on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or use the Race Monitor app for live timing and scoring. The race will be live streamed on the SpeedTour TV YouTube Channel.
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