Oschersleben ADAC Formula 4  Tales from the paddock

Oschersleben ADAC Formula 4 Tales from the paddock

03.05.2017: • Magnificent backdrop: More than 20,000 fans turn up for season opener at Oschersleben

•    Magnificent backdrop: More than 20,000 fans turn up for season opener at Oschersleben

•    FIA training for ADAC Formula 4 juniors

•    KIKA shows series featuring ADAC Formula 4 drivers                

Oschersleben     Race 1     Race 2     Race 3

Winner:     Juri Vips, EST     Nicklas Nielsen, DEN     Lirim Zendeli, GER

Runner-up:     Nicklas Nielsen, DEN     Felipe Drugovich, BRA     Oliver Söderström, SWE

3rd place:     Jonathan Aberdein, RSA     Fabio Scherer, SUI     J Aberdein, RSA

Best Rookie:     Charles Weerts, BEL     Charles Weerts, BEL     Laurin Heinrich, GER

Pole position:     Felipe Drugovich, BRA     Nicklas Nielsen, DEN     Kami Laliberté, CAN

Fastest lap:     Nielsen, 1:26.897     Drugovich, 1:27.178     Zendeli, 1:26.999

On the weekend of 28th - 30th April, ADAC Formula 4 successfully got its third season underway at Motorsport Arena Oschersleben. Ascending the top rung of the podium were three youngsters from three different countries: Juri Vips (16, Estonia, Prema Powerteam), 2016 rookie champion Nicklas Nielsen (20, Denmark, US Racing) and Lirim Zendeli (16, Germany, ADAC Berlin- Brandenburg).

More than 20,000 fans came through the gates to see the ADAC High Speed Academy in action at the race circuit near Magdeburg. Sport1 and Sport1+ showed all three races live on TV. The single-seater racing stars of the future travel to the Lausitzring in three weeks' time (19th - 21st May) for the Motorsport Festival, when races four to six will be contested in the context of the ADAC GT Masters and the DTM.

Hugely popular with spectators: More than 20,000 motorsport fans packed out the stands of the Motorsport Arena at Oschersleben for the ADAC GT Masters, ADAC Formula 4 and ADAC TCR Germany. There were also crowds of people milling around the paddock where teams and drivers made themselves available to answer the fans' questions and pose for selfies. The first race weekend of 2017 also received extensive cover from the media. Sport1 and Sport1+ showed all the races on TV as well as in a live-streamed version.

A TV series about a racing series: The KIKA children's TV channel is currently broadcasting a repeat of its documentary 'Pole Position' which features Sophia Flörsch, the only female in the starter line-up of the 2017 ADAC Formula 4, and Doureid 'Dodo' Ghattas, a Formula 4 newcomer and ADAC Sport Foundation protégé, as well as Michelle Halder and Jannes Fittje who both competed in previous Formula 4 seasons.

The series, which was shown for the first time in 2016, provides a close-up look behind the scenes as the youngsters take their first steps on the racing career ladder and is characterised by emotion and suspense. The first batch of episodes (1 - 8) go out at 8.10pm CEST between Monday 1st May and Thursday 4th May.

 Episodes 9 and 10 will be shown on Monday 8th May. The four new episodes of season 2 will be shown on Tuesday 9th May (1 and 2) and Wednesday 10th May (3 and 4). For further information about 'Pole Position' and an online media library with all the episodes and transmission dates, visit www.poleposition.de.

Get your exercise books out... The day before the start of the ADAC Formula 4 season, the FIA (International Automobile Federation) laid on a training course for the 26 youngsters, with topics as diverse as safety and driver conduct, race regulations, the meaning of the marshals' flags and anti-doping guidelines.

 ADAC Formula 4 became the first nationally organised F4 series in 2016 to adopt the mandatory FIA training provided by the FIA Formula 3 series. The ADAC had actually come up with its own training course in the previous year, which it called 'Ausbildungsprogramm neben der Strecke'. "It was all very interesting and helpful" said ADAC Formula 4 rookie Laurin Heinrich after his first session.

Podium celebrity: The Oschersleben podium on Saturday was graced by the presence of a racing legend: Hans-Joachim 'Strietzel' Stuck, President of the German Motor Sports Federation (DMSB), presented Juri Vips, winner of the opening race of the season, with his trophy. During his long career, Stuck (66) competed in Formula 1, won the Le Mans 24-hour race and became DTM champion. He watched the opening race of the 2017 ADAC GT Masters as well as the first two races of the 2017 ADAC Formula 4. Also presenting trophies this weekend was Christian Reinicke, General Legal Advisor of the ADAC.

Group photo: All the drivers competing in this year's ADAC Formula 4, including the one female contestant, assembled in front of the ADAC hospitality suite in the paddock on Sunday morning for the traditional group photo. They were joined by ADAC Sport President Hermann Tomczyk and ADAC Head of Motorsport Thomas Voss.

Visitors from Australia: Graham Sattler, Operations Manager of the Confederation of Australian Motorsport (CAMS), and David Carrigan, Operations Manager of the Australian Formula 4 Championship, paid a visit to Oschersleben over the race weekend. They held discussions with ADAC officials about the race calendar and organisation for the ADAC GT Masters and ADAC Formula 4.

Emotional: It was a very special Race 3 for Sweden's Oliver Söderström. The 18-year-old runner-up was ecstatic to have achieved the best result of his career and contributed to a one-two victory for his Berlin-Brandenburg team.

 But that wasn't all. He made an emotional speech on the podium thanking the "person who helped me to achieve this". "During the winter tests, the speed was missing and I was really down," he said. "The fact that I'm standing here today makes me very happy, and I dedicate this success to my girlfriend who really supported me through this period and to whom I owe much."

A warm welcome: Not only was a warm welcome extended to 15-year-old ADAC Formula 4 newcomer Laurin Heinrich by the 2017 cohort of drivers, but his team from Kürnach in northern Bavaria also got a great reception from the 'Formula 4 family'.

Thanks to helpful advice from Van Amersfoort Racing and Motopark, Team Heinrich managed to solve a number of technical problems on their car. Laurin picked up a first trophy in the Best Rookie class for Race 3 on Sunday. This will now have pride of place in the Heinrich household.

The greatest gift of all: Doureid 'Dodo' Ghattas celebrates his 15th birthday on 9th May. The birthday gift he probably appreciates most of all is the chance to make his ADAC Formula 4 debut as a member of the Piro Interdental squad on the weekend of 19th - 21st May.

The three races will be contested against the impressive backdrop of the Lausitzring when ADAC Formula 4 shares the billing at the Motorsport Festival with the ADAC GT Masters and the DTM. The former kart racer has already sampled the Formula 4 atmosphere at Oschersleben: "I was too young for the first fixture of the 2017 ADAC F4 calendar, but as of the second race weekend at the Lausitzring, I will be a regular and I'll be giving it everything I've got."

Andreas Asen/Uschi Vogel- photos ADAC

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/adac-formula4-oschersleben-tales-paddock---164397.html

03.05.2017 / MaP

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