Misano F4: Maini secures rookie podium despite penalty

Kush Mani was handed a 10-second penalty in the final race but still managed to secure a rookie podium on his Italian F4 debut.

After finishing eighth in the first race on Saturday, the Indian maintained his gritty form in the final two races on Sunday, at Misano.

The 15-year-old in the Group A/Group C (third race of the weekend) race, started from 21st on the grid to finish 10th, scoring the single point.

Since the start of the race Maini was in a fight with Federico Iribane, the two exchanging places until lap 9, before the Italian lost out in the battle.

The BVM Racing driver stood 11th until the last lap, but with Kevin Kratz dropping out of the top 10 from ninth, it helped Maini to end 10th.

The race was won by DR Formula's Raul Guzman from the Jenzer duo of Marcos Seibert and Job van Uitert.

First podium in final race

For the final race among the top 36 drivers, Maini started from 14th on the grid and rocketed into the top 10, at the start.

The Indian finished fourth in the race and second in the rookie standings keeping double race winner Mick Schumacher behind, the German having to come through the field, after stalling at the start.

Maini, however, lost his fourth place after he was handed a 10-second penalty, dropping him to eighth overall.

He still kept his second place in the rookie standings, scoring healthy points for the championship.

Jenzer's Seibert won the race with Prema's rookie Juri Vips second (first in rookie) and Guzman rounded off the podium.

A bittersweet end to Maini's debut weekend means the Indian sits 13th in the main championship with nine points, while fourth in the rookie standings with 40 points, as Schumacher and Vips lead the respective list.

Schedule reason to switch

The Indian had earlier planned to do F4 Spain and SMP F4 but changed it to Italian F4 due to "schedule and logistics".

"In terms of scheduling and figuring out logistics, it proved to be difficult racing for both SMP and Spanish F4," Maini told Motorsport.com.

"We had tested earlier with the car in Italy and I decided that the car suited me. I had also met some of my current team members and bonded with them really well.

"The rules of Italian F4 allow us to tinker with the set up of the car a bit more freely which drew me to the championship," he added.

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About this article
Series Formula 4
Event F4 Italy: Misano
Track Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
Drivers Kush Maini
Teams BVM Racing
Article type Race report