- Ricardo Gracia (7th in the first race) and Pablo Sarrazin (9th in the second) add 7 points for the team in the test held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
- The meeting was marked by the performance of the tires, which recorded high rates of degradation and graining .
- “ I would like to thank the drivers for their trust and hard work all season. We have grown together in an increasingly competitive competition and I would like to wish them the best for the future,” says Jaime Serrano, CEO of Monlau Motul Technical School.
Monlau Motul Technical School closed the 2023 Spanish F4 season at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya with a double presence in the points. In a meeting marked by the performance of the tires, subjected to high demands due to the hardness of the Catalan track, Ricardo Gracia (7th in the first race) and Pablo Sarrazin (9th in the second) added 7 more points to Monlau Motul’s scoreboard. , which closes the year in seventh position in the classification reserved for the teams.
The Spanish F4 arrived in Barcelona debuting the new Grand Prix layout, now without the chicane in the third sector, and with the hope of the four Monlau Motul Technical School drivers to continue adding points and growing sportingly. The weekend was a real challenge for the team in terms of logistics, since it had to distribute its troops between this meeting and the one that the TCR Spain and the CER GT scheduled at the Ángel Nieto circuit in Jerez.
The activity on the track began with the traditional collective and free practice sessions on Friday and Saturday morning, which made clear the importance of tires in any result. Once the first classification arrived, Ricardo Gracia took off with the best time of the weekend (1:41.858) to take fourth place on the grid, equaling his best result of the year.
In the first race, Gracia and Sarrazin assumed a leading role, fighting at all times within the top 10. The Brazilian achieved a brilliant seventh position at the end of the event, the end of which was precipitated after 26 minutes of action by an incident that forced display the red flag. Pablo Sarrazin, for his part, was just short of the points, in 11th place, just ahead of his teammate Lin Hodenius, who made an extraordinary comeback from his 22nd starting position. Fernando Barrichello qualified in 17th position.
The importance of tires was again evident on Sunday morning in the second qualifying session. After his excellent Q1, Gracia had high hopes for this run, but a set of tires that did not offer the expected performance dropped him to the 29th starting position for the third race. The best driver of the team was, therefore, Pablo Sarrazin, 14th.
The short race, scheduled for 25 minutes plus one lap, was also complicated for Monlau Motul Technical School, and multiplied the work in the pits. Ricardo Gracia, who started sixth, was hit in the first corner and was forced to abandon, a similar circumstance that ended, a few meters later, the hopes of Lin Hodenius. Fernando Barrichello, for his part, was unable to start as a result of the viral infection that he had been carrying since the beginning of the meeting . The team’s hopes were placed, therefore, in Pablo Sarrazin, who had one of his best performances of the season to cross the finish line in 9th place, earning one point.
Sunday afternoon hosted the 21st and final test of the season, one of the most hectic and dramatic of the year. With Barrichello unwell from the start and Hodenius unable to repair his car due to damage to the structure after the morning incident, Sarrazin and Gracia became the Monlau Motul standard bearers. The Frenchman said goodbye on the fourth lap, and Gracia did not give up in his efforts to recover places, going from 29th starting position to 14th with which he concluded the season.
David Simón , Team Manager of Monlau Motul Technical School, valued the individual performance of the four drivers in the last F4 event of the year: “Montmeló has been one of the hardest tracks for the tires, with degradation and graining at very high levels. highs that have made the racing very open and interesting. Ricardo Gracia has had a great weekend. Brilliant in qualifying, just an unrelated incident and a set of low-performance wheels in Q2 have prevented him from finishing in the points in the three rounds. Pablo Sarrazin has been very competitive both in qualifying and in the race, and has touched the top 10 in race 1 and has scored points in the second, in line with his evolution since the beginning of the year. Similar balance for Lin Hodenius, who continues to grow and is increasingly closer to the first. Fernando Barrichello, for his part, has suffered many physical problems all weekend due to a viral infection, which has hampered his performance .”
Jaime Serrano , CEO of the team, stated as a final summary: “I would like, above all, to thank the five drivers who have competed with us this year for their trust and great work throughout the season, in addition to wishing them the best for the team. future. Their sporting progression has gone hand in hand with what our technical and engineering human group has experienced, which also ends a campaign full of learning. In 2023 we have continued to grow in a championship that is increasingly competitive and demanding for everyone . ”
The final classification of the Spanish F4 places Ricardo Gracia in 13th position in the table, with 25 points, preceding Fernando Barrichello, 17th with 6, and Pablo Sarrazin, 22nd with 2 points. The 25 points accumulated by all of them place Monlau Motul Technical School in 7th place in the team competition.