SMP Racing junior driver Michael Belov took part in the final round of the ADAC Formula 4 Championship on September 27-29 at the Sachsenring circuit in Germany.
On Saturday, Belov won the first race and finished Race 2 in tenth place. In the third race, which took place on Sunday, Michael fought a lot, moved up to sixth place, but due to a puncture after a collision with one of his rivals, was able to finish only in fourteenth position.
“On Saturday we got a very good race,” Michael Belov said. “It was supposed to be on the dry surface, but it started to rain just before the start. We had doubts about the rain tyres: some drives made a decision to change the tyres, some decided not to, but the first five drivers remained on slicks, as we did. I was able to get to first place, because I avoided getting too much wheelspin at the start. Then there was a big degradation of tyres, and by the end of the race the pace of all cars dropped down by about three seconds, compared with qualifying. Throughout almost the entire distance, I fended off the attacks of my rivals, had several dangerous and risky moments, but was able to defend my first place.
Sunday's race started well: after the first turn I was already sixth after starting from ninth place. At first, I defended the position, but when I saw that the rivals behind me fighting and focused on driving. In the middle of the race I got close to my rival ahead and attacked him. In the middle of the turn I felt that I was losing control of the car. They told me on the radio that I had a puncture in the rear wheel due to contact with my teammate, so I had to pit in order to replace tyres and therefore returned to the track behind the pack. Only at the end of the race, when the safety car appeared on the track, I managed to get close to other drivers. On the last lap, I attacked my rival using a wider line, but his lost control of the car and hit me in the rear wheel. In any case, participation in the German Formula 4 is a valuable experience for me. I learned new tracks and got a lot of driving experience, which will be useful in the Italian championship."
The next race for Michael Belov will be in Italy on October 4-6, the sixth round of Italian Formula 4 Championship at the Mugello track.