Emirati Protégé Keanu Al-Azhari heads to Yas Marina Circuit for F4 UAE Championship finale

Emirati Protégé Keanu Al-Azhari heads to Yas Marina Circuit for F4 UAE Championship finale

16.02.2023: 2023 FORMULA 4 UAE CHAMPIONSHIP YAS MARINA, ABU DHABI February 17th-19th, 2023 Young Emirati racing protégé Keanu Al-Azhari returns to action in the final round of the Formula 4 UAE Championship at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi this we


2023 FORMULA 4 UAE CHAMPIONSHIP
YAS MARINA, ABU DHABI
February 17th-19th, 2023  
 



Young Emirati racing protégé Keanu Al-Azhari returns to action in the final round of the Formula 4 UAE Championship at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi this weekend (February 17th-19th).
 


Fifteen-year-old Al-Azhari has quickly broken through the ranks of single-seater racing after being part of the Tony Kart Racing Team and competing in the OK Senior category last year.  
 


Last October, Keanu was selected to attend the Richard Mille Young Talent Academy Shootout in Spain for the world’s top 14 young drivers. This was organised by All Road Management in Formula 4 race cars run by the MP Motorsport team on the Navarra circuit with the fitness challenge managed by Formula Medicine.



Al-Azhari won the shootout and was announced as a 2023 Richard Mille official driver. His first programme of events with Richard Mille will be the 2023 Formula 4 Spanish Championship, where he will race in the MP Motorsport team.
 


In October, he was also selected by Abu Dhabi to attend the shootout for their new Yas Heat Racing team and was announced as their official driver. His first programme with Yas Heat Racing was the F1 Abu Dhabi GP 2022 Formula 4 Trophy races, where he finished third on both occasions.
 


Al-Azhari’s second programme with Yas Heat Racing is this year’s Formula 4 UAE Championship. He achieved a great result with second place in one of the races at the Dubai Autodrome last weekend and is relishing the challenge of trying to snatch a maiden win in Abu Dhabi this weekend.  
 


The youngster said: “After nine years in professional karting my life in Formula single-seater racing began four months and progressed very rapidly. I’m very proud that after my great efforts in karting, I was selected to compete in two very prestigious shootouts for Abu Dhabi’s new Yas Heat Racing and for Richard’s Mille Official Driver for 2023.
 


“It’s a dream come true for me to win both these shootouts and represent both the country that I was born and reside in, the United Arab Emirates, and such a strong supporter of motorsport, Richard Mille. Luckily, I turned 15 three months ago and that was just in time for the F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix where I proudly stood on the F1 podium with the UAE flag in both races!”
 


Heading into the final weekend of the Formula 4 UAE Championship, Al-Azhari’s former Tony Kart team-mate Tuukka Taponen will be the man to beat after he achieved race wins in Dubai. However, Australian racer James Wharton is the championship leader by six-points after a run of consistent finishes.
 


The Formula 4 UAE Championship was the brainchild of the current FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem and was certified by the FIA in 2016. It enables GCC and European drivers to compete over the winter months in a cost-effective and competitive championship.
 


Competitors race the Tatuus F4 T421 Gen2 race car model, which is powered by a Fiat Abarth F413T turbocharged, 1.4-litre engine that delivers 160hp.
 


Thirty minutes of free practice for the F4 racers gets underway at 11.45hrs tomorrow morning (Friday) and precedes two qualifying sessions, starting at 16.20hrs and 16.40hrs, respectively.
 


The first of the weekend’s 25-minute F4 races fires into life at 09.45hrs on Saturday morning, with the second taking centre stage before the start of the round of the Asian Le Mans series at 13.35hrs. The third F4 race is scheduled to start at 11.00hrs on Sunday.
 




- Neil Perkins,  photos F4 UAE Championship Certified by FIA - F4 UAE Championship Certified by FIA

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16.02.2023 / MaP

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