AUSTIN, Texas (November 5, 2023) – Confirmed as the 2023 Driver Champion for Formula 4 United States Championship Powered by Honda (F4 U.S.), Patrick Woods-Toth finished off his season in Victory Lane on Saturday afternoon at Circuit of The Americas (COTA). In a whirlwind year, the 20-year-old Canadian went from driving karts, to attending an F4 “karts to cars” scholarship school at Radford Racing School last December, to winning a championship in his first year racing single seaters. The victory marked Woods-Toth (No. 27 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4) fourth time atop the podium in 2023. He held off a hard-charging Jesse Lacey (No. 16 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F4) during the closing laps, crossing the line side by side with his teammate to take the win with a 0.017-second margin.
Notes of Interest:
- Patrick Woods-Toth, the 2023 F4 U.S. Champion, won his fourth race of the season on Saturday at Circuit of The Americas. The result also marked his 14th podium of 2023.
- In a whirlwind year, the 20-year-old Canadian went from driving karts, to attending Radford Racing School’s F4 U.S. Scholarship Award School last December, to winning a championship in his first year of single-seater competition.
- Drivers from Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport have won seven F4 U.S. races this year. Woods-Toth (4 wins) led the charge, with Titus Sherlock (2 wins) and Jesse Lacey (1 win) each adding to the total.
- Titus Sherlock was awarded the Omologato Perfectly Timed Move of the Race after winning Race 1 of the weekend, and overcoming a mechanical issue in the Race 3 that caused him to give up the pole position and start the race from the back of the field. Despite the circumstances, he raced through the field to finish eighth.
- James Lawley (No. 77 Atlantic Racing Team Ligier JS F4) recorded a career-best finish with his seventh-place result. The Nova Scotia-based Atlantic Racing Team had the longest tow in the F4 U.S. paddock to reach Circuit of The Americas.
The drama started before the formation lap was even complete—Titus Sherlock (No. 31 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Liger JS F4) earned the pole after setting fast lap in Race 2, but instead of leading the field down the grid, he was forced down pit road with a mechanical issue. The field faced an aborted start, which allowed Sherlock’s team a couple extra minutes to work on his car while the field came back around for a two-by-two rolling start. Daniel Cará (No. 10 Tenuta Foppo & Ambrosi Ligier JS F4) led the field down the front stretch with Woods-Toth next to him accelerating toward the green flag. Cará had a clean start and pulled away from the field, while a couple competitors spun behind him. Before the completion of the first lap, double yellows waved. Augie Soto Schirripa (No. 24 International Motorsport Ligier JS F4) was on a tear from the drop of the green flag. The Race 2 winner experienced a transponder failure in that event, which left him without an official lap time to set the grid for Race 3. Instead, he lined up 22nd and climbed all the way to eighth before the safety period.
The race resumed with Cará leading the field to the restart, while Daniel Quimby (No. 42 Doran Motorsports Group Ligier JS F4), Kekai Hauanio (No. 29 N.E. Where Transport Ligier JS F4), Woods-Toth and Lacey battled hard behind him. It didn’t take long until Woods-Toth starting picking off his competition with Lacey doing the same behind him. Woods-Toth overtook Cará for the lead with just over 11 minutes left on the clock. Just a few turns later, Lacey moved in to second overtaking Quimby racing through Turn 1. From there, it was all focus forward.
Woods-Toth opened up a 1.604-second lead, with Lacey trailing behind him. Meanwhile, Soto-Schirripa made it up to fifth. Not content with second, Lacey started closing in on Woods-Toth. With just over two minutes left on the clock, Lacey had cut Woods-Toth’s lead by a full second—now running just 0.572 seconds behind his teammate. As Lacey continued to apply pressure on the leader, Soto-Schirripa made his way to third after starting 22nd.
On the final lap, Lacey ran side by side with Woods-Toth through Turn 11. The two drag raced down the backstretch before making contact in Turn 12, and Lacey finally pulled ahead as they reached Turn 13. Now nose to tail, Lacey led Woods-Toth and Soto-Schirripa through the final turns all the way to Turn 19. Woods-Toth pulled next to Lacey and raced him through Turn 20 and to the finish line. As they crossed, Woods-Toth edged Lacey by just a 0.017-second margin, with Soto-Schirripa just behind them.
READ MORE: Race 3 Official Results
“We wrapped up the championship yesterday after such a strong year, and today, we were just going for gold,” said Woods-Toth from Victory Lane. “It's nice to end on a high note. Finishing first on track and we came away with a championship—that's the most important part. I'm just so happy and thankful for the team, my sponsors, everyone. It's been such an amazing year.”
Woods-Toth won the 2023 F4 U.S. Championship this weekend at the Mission Foods Austin SpeedTour. With his win in Race 1 at COTA, Sherlock confirmed his place as the 2023 Vice Champion. After three podiums in the weekend’s three races, Soto-Schirripa finished third in the Driver Points Championship, despite missing two race weekends this year.
READ MORE: 2023 Driver Points Championship Standings
With seven wins and 25 podiums this season, the Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport organization locked up the 2023 Team Championship title. Jay Howard Driver Development finished second after recording three wins and six podiums. International Motorsports picked up two spots in the standings this weekend to finish third in the Team Championship Point Standings with four wins and eight podiums.
READ MORE: 2023 Team Points Championship Standings
F4 U.S. will kick off its 2024 season, April 11-14 at NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, La.
For news and updates throughout the off season, be sure to follow F4 U.S. on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Prospective drivers wanting to learn more about F4 U.S., the #RoadToF1 ladder, and how to get involved in the 2024 F4 U.S. season should visit F4USChampionship.com.