In 2023, Frank Porte Ruiz has set himself quite a challenge by deciding to make his single-seater debut by entering the FIA-certified French F4 Championship run by the FFSA Academy. The driver from Andorra has to compete against others who are often much more experienced than him, who have several seasons of karting under their belts or who are competing in their second season in a car. Despite this, the 16-year-old driver (he will turn 17 on 9th June) has impressed with his determination and his desire to progress quickly. After having made his mark on the Nogaro circuit, he made a remarkable comeback at Magny-Cours by moving up from 23rd to 11th place, before scoring his first point a week later in the streets of Pau. Promising!
For Frank Porte Ruiz, the F4 season started in April with the very popular Easter Cup at Nogaro. This discovery phase was favourable for the assimilation of many parameters that a driver dreaming of a career in motor sport must acquire. A difficult Qualifying session prevented him from achieving his goals in the south-west of France. Nevertheless, Frank arrived at Magny-Cours with more confidence at the beginning of May in a meeting once again shared with the prestigious French GT Championship.
The young Andorran hopeful showed himself to be more and more incisive and combative during the three days of racing. This increase in power was confirmed on Sunday in Race 3 with a clear improvement in lap times and a gain of 12 positions! Frank finished less than a second behind the 10th-placed driver.
Located at the foot of the Pyrenees, the city of Pau organised the third round of the French F4 Championship on its legendary 2,760-metre street circuit, an integral part of the heritage of international motor sport. Reaching high speeds from corner to corner when the wheels are constantly grazing the rails is not easy, but Frank Porte Ruiz quickly felt at ease on this circuit that few drivers knew.
After an encouraging Free Practice session, the young driver was delayed by a problem during the Qualifying session, forcing him to start at the back of the pack in all three races. Frank did not give up, however, and after an excellent start in Race 1, he climbed from 19th to 14th position. He did even better in Race 2 by gaining 10 places! He started 18th and finished 8th, setting times similar to those of drivers who were much more experienced than him.
He started Race 3 with a seven-place jump, but his momentum was cut short by rain and a red flag, which did not help him. At the restart, he fell sharply to 21st and had to be satisfied with a recovery to 17th position. Frank Porte Ruiz hopes to keep this strong momentum in the next races.
Races remaining in 2023:
2nd-4th June: #4 Spa Francorchamps / Belgium
14th-16th July: #5 Misano / Italy
22nd-24th September: #6 Lédenon / France
6th-8th October: #7 Paul Ricard-Le Castellet / France
Info Kartcom / Photo © KSP – Guillaume Veuve