KARTING CHAMPION SEAN BABINGTON READY FOR ROUND 1 OF F4UAE
Dubai-based karting champion Sean Babington will make his circuit racing debut this weekend as the new F4UAE Championship prepares for Round 1 in Dubai, UAE.
Originally from Great Britain, Babington is a four-time British karting champion, has won three European and two world titles, and during the past two years since moving to the UAE has acted as driver coach for national championship-winning Energy Karts Dubai based at the Dubai Autodrome’s Kartdrome.
However, this weekend not only marks the first time that Babington has raced a Formula 4 Tatuus open-wheeler, but also anything other than a kart, as he steps into the #4 Energy Dubai F4UAE racecar for the first point-scoring Championship round of the season.
“I’ve always wanted to jump up to circuit racing and Formula 4 is the perfect opportunity to do that in proper racecars,” said Babington. “To be honest, once I finished school I was pretty much full-time racing karts in the UK most weekends, and years down the line I still haven’t been in a car yet so F4 is a great chance for me to move up."
Having first tested the F4UAE Tatuus this past Tuesday at the Dubai Autodrome, Babington confirmed he comfortably took to the new formula car ahead of his first race on Friday.
“It was an easier transition than I thought,” admitted Babington. “I found the cars limits and I’d say it’s got to be one of the closest things to a kart with the way it handles. You can throw the car around a bit more, the car’s really responsive, it’s hard to get used to the braking but it’s still great fun to drive.”
Well cemented in the strong karting scene in the UAE, Babington was complimentary of F4UAE and envisions the Championship being the natural stepping stone for many local junior karters who wish to progress their careers professionally in the future.
“Absolutely, I think there’s a lot of drivers around even if you just look at Senior Rotax, for sure they want to race cars. Being at karting races the last few weeks everyone is talking about F4UAE since the Trophy Event last month. So when 10 to 12 year olds grow up in a couple of years time, they’ll all be mad for this category, for sure,” said Babington.
F4UAE promoter Carl Rolaston welcomed Babington to the Championship and believes his previous racing success will be a great attribute to the category. “Sean has been racing since he was nine-years-old and despite not having raced single-seaters before, he has honed his race craft very well and I have no doubt will be competitive,” said Rolaston. “We welcome him to the starting grid and wish he and all of our competitors an enjoyable and successful weekend.”
At last month’s non-championship Trophy Event, Energy Dubai F4 Racing Team finished third in all three races thanks to India-based Ricky Donison, who will return to the team for Round 2 in December.
Round 1 of the F4UAE Championship powered by Abarth will take place this Thursday to Saturday, November 17-19, at the Dubai Autodrome Circuit. More information about the event can be found at http://www.f4uae.com/events/2016-round-one