F.4 – Podium and comeback for Joao Vieira at Imola

On the international circuit of Imola, scene of the third round of the Italian F.4 Championship Powered by Abarth, Joao Vieira has once again proved to be stronger than the bad luck and all external events which have influenced his result, right from the beginning. The Brazilian driver of Antonelli Motorsport welcomes the appointment at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari circuit with positive third place and recovery in race-1, closing in the top-10.

During the first round of Qualifying, Joao was forced to stop at the pit for almost the entire session, because of a problem with the valve of the left rear tyre, put on incorrectly right by the tyres’ supplier, moving back to the 23rd position out of 27 drivers on the starting grid. In the second round, the Brazilian recovered the gap, signing the fourth fastest time in just 309 thousandths from pole position, despite a greater fuel load. Mindful of the great comeback in Monza, Joao did not give up and along the 4,909 m of the track, he signed another sensational comeback, finishing in ninth position in the overall standing, more 14 overtakes in just 17 laps. The podium came at the end of the weekend, in race-3, after the entry of two safety cars. “As happened in Vallelunga and Monza, even here in Imola we collected what we deserved. The weekend started with difficulties, Joao was forced to miss Qualifying-1 for a problem with the valve of a tyre, due to Pirelli’s staff. In Qualifying-2, Joao did a good job, because, despite 10 kg more fuel and a small imperfection at the Rivazza bend, he finished in the fourth position. In race-1, he completed another amazing comeback, demonstrating potential and greeting the weekend with a podium. In race-2, he tried to win the victory, but because of a mistake caused by rush, he had an accident. Unfortunately, the weekend in Imola put us out of competition for the championship, but I’m sure we will fight tooth and nail till the end, starting right from the next race, at Mugello circuit“, the manager Giovanni Minardi analyzes.

It was a weekend conditioned by external factors, but also my mistakes, such as in race-2. These are errors that are paid and that you should not do, but that’s racing. I am very happy with the Qualifying-2, where I almost get the pole, despite a higher load of gasoline, and the recovery in race-1. Unfortunately, in race-3 I could not do more. The first two drivers were just too fast for us. I do not give up and I think about the next challenge at Mugello”, the driver of Minardi Management, Joao Vieira, says.