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Aqil Alibhai secures Virtuosi’s first win of 2023!

Virtuosi Racing’s Aqil Alibhai secured his first victory in single-seaters at the Norfolk-based team’s home circuit, Snetterton, in the third race weekend of the ROKiT British F4 Championship.

Photo by Jakob Ebrey

The reverse-grid race saw Alibhai line up in seventh, and he immediately began picking off his competitors from lights-out.

After an incident-filled opening lap, the Safety Car was deployed. When the track was clear, the South African racer managed the restart perfectly, emerging at the front of the field in a matter of corners.

From there, the South African extended the gap until another Safety Car threatened his lead. A second strong restart ensured Alibhai retained first place ahead of the chequered flag.

On the win, Alibhai beamed, “Wow, what a feeling! To win in such a prestigious championship in only my fourth weekend racing a single seater is something none of us will ever forget! We made the best of a good race set-up. I felt confident and happy in the car, so I was able to commit to some clean overtakes for the win.”

“Special thanks to my dad for his belief in me, to my Virtuosi team for a brilliant car, and to my many fans back home in South Africa and here in the UK. Hopefully, that’s also the first of many more ROKiT British F4 race wins!”

Virtuosi’s Alibhai became the sixth different winner of the highly competitive 2023 season, but more notably, the first South African driver to win an F4 race in the current era.

Of the achievement, Virtuosi Racing F4 team boss Mark Salmon said: “We are incredibly proud of Aqil. He put together a confident and brilliant drive and took a win that he and the team thoroughly deserved.”

The ROKiT British F4 Championship returns to action on 3-4 June at Thruxton Circuit, Hampshire. UK viewers can catch the third and final race of the weekend live on ITV 4.

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