2022F4UAE Round1 Race 1 Winner James Wharton 2022F4UAE Round1 Race 1 Start _ACP3924.jpg


Australian rookie sensation James Wharton has dominated Round 2 of the FIA F4UAE Championship powered by Abarth this weekend at Dubai Autodrome (January 28-30) by claiming his first three single-seater career victories, only to be stopped from a fourth by PHM Racing's Nikita Bedrin in the final race.

The Prema Racing driver (#13) was the star steerer out of a total 29 international drivers, dominating qualifying and the first three races, with teammates Aiden Neate (#57) and Charlie Wurz (#7) also taking multiple podium finishes up until the final race.

MP Motorsport's Tasanapol Inthraphuvasak (#14) from Thailand scored two podium finishes, while rookies Martinius Stenshorne (#45) from Norway and Rafael Camara (#88) from Brazil placed in the top three for Race 4.

Wharton topped both qualifying sessions on Saturday, as well as a clocking the second-fastest time in qualifying one; these times gave him a P1 start in the first three races of the weekend. Despite a few safety car interventions in both of Saturday's races, Wharton lead each of the 25-minute races from pole to the chequered flag as well as the first race on Sunday morning. 

In the final 25-minute race on Sunday afternoon, the Australian started from 12th place (due to the top-12 finishers from Race 3 being reversed for Race 4), but struggled on the start, coming home a credible and hard-fought sixth place.

Bedrin (#15) from Russia - the rookie champion last year for both the Italian and German F4 championships - stormed to the front early and finished in the lead ahead of Race 4 rookie winner Stenshorne from 3Y by R-ace GP, and Prema Racing's Camara who's third place was well-fought having sat out of Round 1 due to health reasons. 

"Every so often we get a driver who just steals the show and it's been a sensational weekend of racing by James Wharton, not by just getting his first ever career win in single-seaters but by setting a benchmark for the competition," said category promoter Craig Thompson.

"We'll have another car for Round 3 next week so hopefully that means we'll solidify a 30-car grid for the championship. Even though we have way more cars this year compared to past seasons, the standard of driving has been some of the best we've ever had. It's extremely rewarding to see everyone racing hard and earning their successes, including some very important career milestones."

Despite not currently planning to race at Round 3, Wharton leads the championship points outright ahead of Neate in second and Inthraphuvasak in third. Wharton also leads the rookie standings ahead of Stenshorne. 

The F4UAE Championship stays at Dubai Autodrome for Round 3 next week from February 4-6, 2022.

An extended race-by-race summary can be downloaded here.

Download complete results from Round 2 here.