Virtuosi Racing’s Hungarian driver will kick off the season at Donington Park.

Martin Molnár’s season in the British Formula 4 championship starts this weekend at Donington Park. He is the first Hungarian to compete in the series, embarking on it as
a rookie.

The upcoming weekend marks a milestone in Molnár Martin’s career and also in Hungarian motorsport, as no Hungarian driver has previously competed in a British FIA
series. The 15-year-old athlete officially begins his racing career on the legendary track, setting off on the path towards Formula 1.

The 10-round season, with 8 rounds held as a support series of prestigious BTCC Championship,, starts at Donington Park’s shorter National layout. Martin is already familiar with the 3186-meter circuit featuring 10 corners.

“Donington National is one of my favourite tracks due to its layout. It’ss quite fast-paced with no slow corners, so overtaking won’t be easy, making qualifying extremely crucial. There will be more overtaking opportunities at the Grand Prix circuit in August, although I haven’t driven on it yet, it also seems enjoyable. We’ve participated in several test days with the team on the National layout, consistently being fast and finishing among the front-runners, so I’m eagerly anticipating the first race weekend.”

Martin has been living near the Virtuosi Racing headquarters for some time, allowing him to immerse himself in British motorsport culture.

“The atmosphere here is quite different; I can sense the love for motorsport everywhere, and people not only love but also understand racing. I really liked it from the very first moment. It was crucial during the preseason to get to know the team and bond with the engineers and mechanics. I regularly visited Virtuosi Racing’s headquarters – it’s just 7 minutes away from my home – as it is part of the preparation, and spending time together is essential for team unity.”

“As in any racing series, harmony between the race engineer and the driver is key, but I also strive to build good relationships with my teammates and mechanics. There’s no
friendship on track with the former, but it changes off track; we spend our free time together, have meals, and so on.”

As a driver of the Hungarian Motorsport Academy operated by the Széchenyi University Group’s HUMDA Hungarian Mobility Development Agency Zrt., Martin will face
significant changes not only in environment and car but also in the schedule compared to karting weekends.

“The structure of F4 weekends is very different from karting weekends. Mentally, you always have to be on point since there are only two practice sessions before qualifying. The Donington weekend is even tougher from this perspective since it starts on Thursday, and Friday is a day off for us, F4 drivers. But we all need to adapt to this.”

“The field is very strong, with minimal differences, making qualifying crucial. There are much more experienced drivers than me, but there’s also no shortage of rookies. My
goal for the first race weekend is to finish in the top five among rookies. Setting goals regarding the overall standings is even more challenging, but of course, I aim for the best possible result and hopefully for podium finishes.”

I’m really looking forward to finally racing with this car. We’ve done practice starts during tests, and sometimes we’ve had a little race with teammates until the first or second corner, but the real deal starts this weekend. Here at Donington, you can have side-by-side battles through corners, so we'll see if that happens.”

And what few might consider is that Martin and his peers not only have to keep the car together during practices and races but also between sessions, as they have to drive
from the paddock to the pit lane and back every time.

“The most stressful part of the weekends is when you have to drive from the F4 paddock to the pit lane and vice versa since the garages are occupied by the BTCC teams. It
depends on the track, but during these journeys, there can be differences in levels, various obstacles, cables, rubber mats. You have to be careful not to damage theunderbody or the front wing, for example, on a manhole cover, or burn out the clutch” – highlights Martin how different the world of car racing is compared to karting.

The schedule for the 1st race weekend is as follows (GMT+1): 

10.40 – 11.25: Free practice 1
14.55 – 15.40: Free practice 2

10.25 – 10.45: Qualifying
14.50 – 15.10: Race 1

09.25 – 09.45: Race 2
13.45 – 14.05:  Race 3