Difficult weekend weather-wise for all at Road Atlanta
The story of the weekend was the weather at the Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. With rain moving through the area on Thursday and again on Sunday, treacherous conditions greeted all drivers as the 2021 F4 United States Championship Powered by Honda season kicked off. Having never been to Road Atlanta before, Texan Ryan Shehan completed his first laps of the famed facility on Thursday in the rain and did not get a chance for a complete dry session until Friday’s final practice. Progressing through the weekend and completing every race lap, Shehan will take the positives from the weekend as he looks forward to the remainder of the 2021 season.
After a wet weather Promoters Test Day and pushing the limits a little too much in the final session, Shehan returned to the track Friday for the only practice before qualifying. With weather breaking and slick Hankook Tires on the car, it was time to push hard in his very first visit to Road Atlanta.
“My first qualifying session is behind me and though the results are not what I would have wanted, the goal is to improve with each passing session and work my way forward,” explained Shehan. “Road Atlanta is a tough place and unlike many of the others, I have not had the opportunity to race or test here. With weather yesterday and my first real push laps in the dry during qualifying, I am anticipating a march forward during the wheel-to-wheel racing over the weekend.”
Getting through his first standing start, his first caution, and his first full race distance, Shehan logged laps and was able to advance three positions in Saturday morning's first race of the weekend and season to claim a 22nd place result. That afternoon, the young Texan and F4 rookie returned to the track and made a huge leap forward both in speed and results. Closing the gap to the leader, Shehan secured a 14th place finish, his first top-15 result of the season. Showing progress from race one to race two, the Team Crosslink driver will aim for the points tomorrow afternoon.
“The F4 grid is smaller than in years past but it is stacked with talent,” added Shehan. "I am happy to be here and happy to be able to support my partners. One of my goals this weekend was to finish every race lap, and I will look to check that box tomorrow after race three."
Back to the track on Sunday and with rain moving through the area throughout the morning, series officials deemed the event a wet race as Shehan prepped for his final on-track session of the weekend. Starting in row eight, it would be a tricky opening few laps as spray from the competitors in front and a slick surface provided a difficult start to the thirty-minute race. Deliberately working his way around the Road Atlanta facility, Shehan advanced to the thirteenth position. With several caution laps behind the pace car, the Team Crosslink driver battled in the top-15 when it went back green but a slight bobble in the closing stages pushed him down the running order to a 21st place result.
Shehan continued, “I will reset my goals for the next event and work hard to achieve them. A huge thank you to all of my partners as well as Team Crosslink for everything they have done for me.”
Ryan Shehan would like to thank all of his current partners, including Shores Media, Speed City Broadcasting, Team Crosslink, Lucky Designs USA, Stilo USA, Boudon Competition, and RTD Media & Management.
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