Difficult return to Paul Ricard for GRS Team in Spanish F4

For the first time since the 2020 season, Formula 4 Spanish Championship held a race weekend at Paul Ricard Circuit, in France. It was a tough weekend, in which the team did not score points. There were, however, some positive progressions.

Formula 4 Spanish Championship season resumed this weekend with the third round of the championship. For the second and final time this year, the series left Spain as we travelled to Paul Ricard Circuit, in France.

GRS Team faced the weekend with determination after scoring its first points of the season on the previous meeting -held in Portimão a month ago-. The team’s line-up remained unchanged from the preceding round: Lia Block, Alexander Jacoby and Douwe Dedecker raced under the GRS Team banner in France.

Friday’s collective testing sessions, as well as Saturday morning’s Free Practice sessions, gave the team track time to wrap up the preparations for the weekend. As usual in this series, the grid was incredibly tight, and the gaps were minimal.

First qualifying session took place under mixed conditions. It was a tough one for the team. Despite being competitive and close to the leaders, Dedecker only managed to be 23rd. Block and Jacoby, both of whom are still undergoing a learning progress in every lap, qualified on P32 and P35, respectively.

Race 1 was an opportunity to climb up through the field, and our drivers delivered. An impressive opening lap saw Block fighting for the Top 20. She gained some more spots to finish the race in 17th position, her best race result with the team. Dedecker dropped to the back as he took avoiding action at the start. The Belgian driver had strong pace and bounced back to 20th position. Jacoby was on the fight for the Top 25 until a late issue sent him to the back.

The situation was similar on Sunday. A difficult Qualifying session left Dedecker on P22, Jacoby on P32, and Lia on P34 on the grid for Race 3. A long red flag period, caused by a multiple accident -all drivers involved were unharmed-, was a determinant factor in Race 2. As for our drivers, Lia found herself fast and competitive again. She matched her amazing result from Saturday as she finished the race in 17th. After an early setback, Jacoby took advantage of the red flag and was 27th at the chequered flag. Douwe had to retire.

The Belgian driver finally had a trouble-free race on the third one. Dedecker managed to finish in P18, gaining several spots and showing good pace. Block climbed up from 34th on the grid to 27th at the flag. Alexander wrapped up a tough weekend with another retirement.

After having scored on the previous round, the team leaves Paul Ricard without achieving the expected results. The feeling on this track was not optimal. There were, however, some positives to highlight, mainly Block’s impressive race performances. Weekends like this will help us to face the next rounds more prepared. The team will give everything it has to be back at the top.

Formula 4 Spanish Championship will be back in three weeks. The spectacular MotorLand Aragón will host the fourth meeting of the season, the last one before the summer break.