The two Ferrari Driver Academy students are hoping for a more representative weekend after a tricky start to the season. At the legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit, Tuukka and James both have the podium in their sights.
In the first two rounds of the Italian Formula 4 championship, James Wharton and Tuukka Taponen confirmed the potential shown during the long winter months of preparation, but unfortunate circumstances meant neither of the FDA drivers were able to convert it into the expected points tally. However, in the previous round in Misano, the Finnish rookie did secure his first win, an important milestone after the disappointment of Imola.
James. Wharton also made it to the podium in Misano, twice no less, with a second and a third place finish. Now the 16 year old Australian is keen to secure his first win at Spa-Francorchamps. Unfortunately, Aurelia Nobels will not be racing in Belgium, as she is still recovering from breaking a wrist in Misano. “In the first two rounds, it was the result of qualifying that affected the final scores for both James and Tuukka,” explained the head of the FDA, Marco Matassa. “So this weekend will be useful to see how they go over a single flying lap, especially for the upcoming rounds. Here at Spa, the grid position is less important than at Imola or Misano, so they will get the opportunity to make the most of their race pace. We are hoping for a straightforward weekend so that points scored match their potential. It’s a shame Aurelia won’t be on track, but the priority is for her to be completely fit. There is still a long way to go this season and there will be time for her to continue our programme.”