Calls grow for Red Bull junior to be banned after ignoring black flags

Jamie Woodhouse
The Red Bull F1 factory, located in Milton Keynes in the UK.

The Red Bull F1 factory, located in Milton Keynes in the UK.

There are calls from sections of the racing fanbase for Red Bull junior Enzo Deligny to be banned after an alarming display of dangerous driving in the Spanish Formula 4 series.

Starting the final race of the 2023 Spanish F4 campaign from the front row at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Deligny would have been hoping to apply the pressure to eventual championship runner-up Christian Ho, but instead found himself under attack from behind courtesy of Valerio Rinicella.

But, with Rinicella alongside Deligny onto the run down to Turn 1, Deligny would go on the extreme defensive and force Rinicella fully onto the grass, this only the start of his antics in that race.

Enzo Deligny ignores penalty and black flags

Théophile Naël, who went on to win the title, almost found himself pushed off track by Deligny too at Turn 2, Naël using the escape road and resuming battle with Deligny for P2 at Turn 4, Deligny winning out.

Race Control were not particularly impressed by Deligny’s aggressive start to the race, issuing a drive-through penalty for forcing another driver off the track, a penalty he would never serve.

As a result of snubbing that penalty, Deligny was disqualified from the race on lap 8, but once more would not follow the order, even taking multiple restarts after Safety Car periods despite his disqualification.

Deligny drove all the way to the end of the race, the Red Bull junior not covering himself in glory as sections of the racing fanbase call for action to be taken.

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“Take his license off him. At least a racing ban for 2024,” one fan posted in reaction to footage of the race start incident.

“Imagine what happens if his opponent doesn’t somehow keep control of his car there, bounces off the wall into a track of 30? cars at full speed. Idiots like this need to learn they’re playing with people’s lives and not after it’s too late.”

Another fan was quite sure a ban is coming Deligny’s way, posting: “That is probably going to be a multiple race ban, if he ignored a black flag.”

The claim was made by another that such dangerous driving simply does not belong in single-seater racing: “Ban him. The chop back across the second car, after running the first one off track was a drive through all by itself, let alone the first incident. Driving like this belongs in banger racing, not elite single seaters.”

Deligny ultimately finished P4 in the standings, a P4 and P2 proceeding this DQ, with one fan believing that frustration took over.

“This was an absolutely disgraceful move. I don’t know what Enzo thought he was doing, but he probably didn’t think the track would run out as quickly as it did.

“I don’t know where he was this weekend, constantly dropping back through the field during yesterday’s race too, just seems he’s frustrated at the season being over, knowing that his race pace wasn’t all there. And chose to take it out on someone who got a better jump than him at the start.”

The Red Bull Junior team has already begun its anticipated makeover ahead of 2024 action, with the likes of Pepe Marti, Tim Tramnitz and Kacper Sztuka joining the fold.

Deligny’s future in the programme could rest on how the no-nonsense boss Helmut Marko reacts to his actions.

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