May 5, 2018

First races of SMP F4 NEZ Championship were driven today in sunny and warm conditions at Smolensk Ring in Russia. Isac Blomqvist took the highest stand on the podium twice on Saturday as the Swede won both races of the day.

17-year-old Isac Blomqvist took the pole for the first race. In the beginning of the race he dropped down few positions but managed to climb back to the lead. Blomqvist continued his victory march by crossing the finishing line first also on the second race which he started from the third grid position.

– We had bit of a problem with the pace in the beginning. Ivan (Berets) was a lot faster than me. I just tried to stay on the track because I knew I would be faster at the end of the race. When I got more grip I was starting to step up and then I could get away a little bit. I thought we would be quite strong in this race and we were, said Blomqvist after the first race.

– We had a good start in the second race, I came over the line quite fast so I was able to overtake Konsta (Lappalainen) right away. Then I was catching up with Ivan. Something happened to Ivan’s car, he was slowing down so I could get up on the inside. At the end of the race I lost some time because I think my tires overheated a little bit. But I still managed to finish in P1, smiled Blomqvist after the second victorious race.

In the first race Blomqvist was followed by Russian Ivan Berets who started as second. Berets finished off in the same place he started from.

– Tough race. I started okay as second but then I got stuck behind the first driver. It’s quite difficult to drive behind especially when it’s this hot. The tires gave away quite soon as well. I was just trying to keep the pace to keep the other drivers behind, said Berets.

21-year-old Freek Schothorst was happy with a third position from the first race.

– The race was pretty good. So far this week I’ve been struggling with the pace, it’s not really reached the bar I was expecting. It was a nice battle for the podium position. Konsta went out at some point and after that it was just about managing the pace, the Dutch explained.

Second race brought a Finnish face on the podium as Konsta Lappalainen finished off second after Blomqvist.

– First race was a bit of a disaster but the second race was fine. Of course I want to win but we will try again tomorrow, planned the 16-year-old Finn.

Lappalainen’s team mate and fellow Finn Jesse Salmenautio finished third in the second race. The youngster is having high hopes for tomorrow’s final.

– I got a good start and good laptimes during the whole race but wasn’t able to catch Konsta. Let’s hope for pole in qualifying and win from the race for tomorrow, hoped Salmenautio.

SMP F4 NEZ Championship race weekend will continue tomorrow with the second qualifying at 9.40 and the final race of round one at 13.45. After tomorrow the series will head towards N. Novgorod in the beginning of June.

Results Saturday 5th of May:

Race 1

1. Isac Blomqvist 26:30.327
2. Ivan Berets +0.942
3. Freek Schothorst +4.159
4. Jesse Salmenautio +5.669
5. Michael Belov +6.407
6. Konsta Lappalainen +9.982
7. Ivan Shetsov +16.360
8. Patrick Schott +19.290
9. Pavel Bulantsev +22.951
10. Artem Lobanenko +33.160
11. Nikita Aleksandrov+35.054
12. Alexander Vilaev +49.967

Race 2

1. Isac Blomqvist 20.40.145
2. Konsta Lappalainen+0.471
3. Jesse Salmenautio +2.182
4. Michael Belov +2.932
5. Freek Schothorst +12.867
6. Pavel Bulantsev +17.964
7. Ivan Shetsov +19.134
8. Patrick Schott +19.430
9. Artem Lobanenko +26.451
10. Alexander Vilaev +43.213
11. Nikita Aleksandrov +53.344
12. Ivan Berets +1:02.391

Driver interviews can be watched on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

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SMP F4 NEZ Championship starts this weekend at Smolensk Ring in Russia. Photo: SMP F4 NEZ ChampionshipPhoto: SMP F4 NEZ Championship