ALTON, Va. (October 7, 2023) – Augie Soto-Schirripa earned his second-career win in Formula 4 United States Championship Powered by Honda (F4 U.S.), leading the field to the checkered flag at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR) on Saturday morning. Wet track conditions made for a challenging Race 1 for the Andy Scriven Memorial at the VIR SpeedTour, but Soto-Schirripa raced from his fourth-place grid position to take the lead after a restart on lap five and never looked back.
Notes of Interest:
- Today’s win marked the second-career win for Soto-Schirripa and his International Motorsport team. The organization previously won Round 8 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in June.
- After winning the series’ most recent round, Alex Berg finished second in today’s race.
- Patrick Woods-Toth finished third to record his tenth podium of 2023 and extend his lead in the championship points battle.
- During a weekend celebrating women in motorsports, Hannah Greenemeier (No. 74 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4) recorded her career-best finish with a seventh-place result.
- Kekai Hauanio (No. 29 N. E. Where Transport Ligier JS F4) recorded his career-best finish with a fifth-place result, as did Tanner DeFabis (No. 5 Jay Howard Driver Development / CSU One Cure / Lucas Oil / LHP Ligier JS F4) with his eighth-place run.
Jay Howard Driver Development’s (JHDD) Michael Costello (No. 19 JHDD / CSU One Cure / Lucas Oil / LHP Ligier JS F4) started the race from the pole position on his Hankook rain tires. Costello raced side by side with his championship rival Patrick Woods-Toth (No. 27 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4) through the opening turns, and finally took hold of the lead as they exited Turn 4. Woods-Toth found himself under pressure from Soto-Schirripa as they reached Turn 6, with Soto-Schirripa completing the overtake and claiming the second position as they worked through the area nicknamed “Snake.”
Wet track conditions plagued the morning as much of the field fought reduced visibility due to spray. A full-course caution led to a restart on Lap 5, allowing Soto-Schirripa to make a run at the lead. Applying pressure, Soto-Schirripa capitalized when Costello went wide through the Horseshoe and drove off into the grass. Meanwhile, a rough restart for Woods-Toth moved him from third all the way back to the eighth position.
With the race back under green-flag conditions, battles ensued throughout the field. Alex Berg (No. 08 MySim.ca / Rohde & Liesenfeld / Easy Drift / Penn Elcom Online / Dae Systems Ligier JS F4), Titus Sherlock (No. 31 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F3) and Luciano Martinez (No. 91 Scuderia Buell Ligier JS F3) all had strong restarts to inherit the second, third and fourth positions, respectively. Martinez, however, was looking for even more forward progress, first overtaking Sherlock before setting his sights on Berg. A touch of the rumble strips by Sherlock sent the No. 31 spinning in Snake, while Woods-Toth quietly slid into fourth, overtaking both Sherlock and Daniel Cará (No. 10 Tenuta Foppa & Ambrosi Ligier JS F4) within a matter of seconds. While they jockeyed for the fourth position, Martinez and Berg were racing side-by-side for second through the Uphill Esses. Tight racing in close quarters resulted in Martinez spinning through the grass while Berg continued forward. The full-course caution was once again displayed, slowing the field and causing the clock to run out while under safety.
Soto-Schirripa took the win, followed by Berg in second and Woods-Toth completed the podium in third.
READ MORE: Race 1 Official Results
“The team gave me a great car,” said Soto-Schirripa in Winner’s Circle. “I felt confident with what I had, and knew that the key to this was to be consistent and to be smooth and to not get crazy. Even if you lost a little bit of time on some parts of the track, it was better to keep it on four wheels. We did that and we took home the W. I’m really happy.”
F4 U.S. returns to the track this afternoon for Race 2 at 1:55 p.m. ET. A fan walk and pre-race ceremonies will precede the Andy Scriven Memorial Race with those activities scheduled to begin at 1:10 p.m. ET. Stream the race live on SpeedTour TV’s YouTube page, or use Race Monitor to follow live timing and scoring. Check Facebook,Instagram and Twitter for all of the latest updates about F4 U.S. Championship.