Breakthrough victories in a gripping weekend at Glan-y-Gors saw Tristan Rennie, Tom Adams, Bradley Barrett and Luc Oliver stand on the top step of the podium in each of the respective Rotax classes. Despite the weather threatening an ominous rain shower over the finals, there were some pleasant surprises on track as the rain stayed away and the running order at the head of the pack shifted in the Welsh countryside which should make the final two rounds very interesting indeed.
Tristan Rennie set the weekend in motion from timed qualifying by grabbing the fastest time, and from the first heat Sam Gornall and Harley Haughton grabbed the top spots and brought the heat to championship leader Archie Kitching, who could only finish fourth behind Jez Williams with Rennie claiming fifth ahead of Harri Reynolds. It would however be the only race that wasn’t claimed by Tristan Rennie all weekend. By the second heat he was back to his best, as he led home Alexander Hughes by over 6 seconds. Archie Kitching snatched third position ahead of Gornall and Haughton with Callum Voisin returning to the top six.
In the first final, Rennie would have to sustain intense pressure throughout and claimed the win only after an incredible battle ahead of Haughton and Hughes with only half a second between them all at the finish. Behind them, the championship hit a dramatic moment as both Sam Gornall and Archie Kitching were penalised ten seconds, Gornall for gaining an unfair advantage costing him fourth position and Kitching for an incident that put him out of the race at the half way stage. That promoted Callum Voisin to fourth place with Jed Murphy robbed of fifth after a loose front fairing which allowed Jez Williams and Logan Parker into the top six.
The televised final would be incredibly tough to win for Tristan Rennie too, but he held off a spectacular challenge with Hughes, Voisin and Haughton right on his tail throughout. An amazing drive back through the field for Kitching saw him valiantly climb back to fifth position ahead of his rival and team-mate Sam Gornall, but with only two rounds to go his lead has been severely decreased by his opposition and the battle is set to be very exciting at Clay Pigeon in August.
1. Archie Kitching (Coles Racing) 486 pts
2= Tristan Rennie (Project One Racing) 472 pts
2= Harley Haughton (Coles Racing) 472 pts
4. Sam Gornall (Coles Racing) 466 pts
5. Alexander Hughes (Privateer) 457 pts
6. Jez Williams (Vision Motorsport) 454 pts
William Elswood continued his strong form from Mansell Raceway with another brilliant qualifying run to grab pole position, and he would end up dramatically claiming the first heat of the weekend after on-the-road winner Matthew Higgins was unable to claim his win after a loose front fairing ended his chances. Tiernan Rourke finished in second ahead of Jack Steadman with the top six completed by William Jenkins, Harry Newman-Oakley and Jenson Watts.
Kai Hunter and Tom Adams were rock solid during their heats with two wins for Hunter and two seconds for Adams. In their first encounter it would be Elswood who chased them home in third, with Edward Matthews finishing ahead of Newman-Oakley and the resurgent Ben Caisley after Tiernan Rourke would lose sixth following a front fairing penalty. The third and final heat of the weekend saw Matthew Higgins bounce back to third behind Hunter and Adams whilst Ryan Taylor-Trueman grabbed fourth position in front of Matthews and Harrison Collings.
For the first of the two finals, Kai Hunter continued his relentless dominance of the early season by clinching his seventh final win out of seven in 2019. However on this occasion Tom Adams pushed him to the ragged edge finishing just 0.18 behind at the flag. Will Elswood would grab the third step of the podium just in front of Higgins, Jenkins and Newman-Oakley. But in the second, Hunter’s epic run would finally come to an end as Tom Adams would claim the lead early on and after a tricky first lap Hunter would tumble down the order. With free reign out front, Adams claimed a dominant win ahead of Will Jenkins and Taylan Babbs after a stunning drive up the field to storm the podium. Even Elswood and Newman-Oakley were able to eclipse Kai Hunter in the top six, but Hunter still holds a strong lead in the title fight with two rounds to go. However now the field finally know that in a final, he can be beaten.
1. Kai Hunter (Dan Holland Racing) 512 pts
2. Tom Adams (Coles Racing) 480 pts
3. Taylan Babbs (Vision Motorsport) 456 pts
4. William Elswood (Persistence Motorsport) 442 pts
5. Matthew Higgins (Vision Motorsport) 426 pts
6. Harry Newman-Oakley (Vision Motorsport) 423 pts
In qualifying, first blood went to Oakley Pryer as he seized the initiative with a strong lap, but it was Bradley Barrett who made the best of the first heat as he took the win with Pryer excluded due to a technical non-compliance, which promoted Lewis Malin to the runner-up spot less than a second behind Barrett. Rhys Hunter moved up to third place with the top six rounded out by James Johnson, championship leader Kieran Gifford and privateer Sam Stansbury.
Rain stopped play in the second heat but after 9 tense laps it would be Tom Edmunds who grabbed a crucial victory ahead of Guy Cunnington with Bradley Barrett finishing four seconds down the road in third just in front of Jason Lockwood, James Lingard and Jake Douglas. Cunnington put in a heroic effort in the third heat and claimed a fantastic win with James Lowther and Rhys Hunter – duelling to the finish – joining him in the top three. Johnson and Lockwood were next up in front of Teddy Pritchard-Williams as it proved to be one of the cleanest races of the season, with a sole retirement and no penalties to hand out.
Bradley Barrett clearly opted to save his best til last as he drove a strong race in the first final to take his first final win of the season ahead of Cunnington and Johnson, with Rhys Hunter fending off the attentions of Gifford and Stansbury, whilst the penalties dished to Tom Edmunds, James Lowther and Luke Wooder would see them start the last race of the weekend lower down the order. Barrett and Johnson made a fantastic run of it at the head of the pack and claimed a 1-2 finish for the Dan Holland Racing team. Guy Cunnington claimed third with a miraculous drive back to fourth for Edmunds with Hunter grabbing fifth position ahead of Lewis Malin. With championship leader Kieran Gifford down in seventh, there’s now only two points between him and Barrett at the top of the table with Hunter and Cunnington close behind.
1. Kieran Gifford (KR Sport) 479 pts
2. Bradley Barrett (Dan Holland Racing) 477 pts
3. Rhys Hunter (Dan Holland Racing) 463 pts
4. Guy Cunnington (Persistence Motorsport) 460 pts
5. Oakley Pryer (Team Clay Racing) 457 pts
6. Lewis Malin (Privateer) 442 pts
Nathan Chafer went straight into qualifying with a point to prove and set the fastest time to head the field. He would then go on to win the first heat ahead of Chris Thomas. Louis Large would place in front of Luc Oliver, with the battle behind seeing James Moorcroft eclipse points leader Michael Cheek and the resilient Matteo Zanetti. Chafer would keep the bandwagon rolling into the second heat ahead of Matteo Zanetti at the flag, with Charlie Whaley crossing the line ahead of Cheek only to be demoted behind him due to a loose front fairing, with Large, Thomas and Oliver following in pursuit.
Incredibly it would be three wins out of three for Nathan Chafer as the checkered flag fell after the first final with Michael Cheek scoring valuable points in second place ahead of Louis Large. Thomas would place ahead of Zanetti whilst Jamie Dzyra would place in front of Oliver. But for the second final, it would be a dominant drive for Matteo Zanetti as he romped away from the field to win at a canter. Tragically, he would receive a front fairing penalty and with five seconds added on he would be demoted to fourth place. So Luc Oliver inherited the win after holding off the epic onslaught of Cheek and Large. Charlie Whaley would clinch fifth behind Zanetti, whilst Colin Davis rounded out the top six.
Despite strong results, both Chris Thomas and Jamie Dzyra would be excluded from the meeting – Thomas for an incident that dropped him down the order in the second final, and Dzyra would be deleted from the results after abusive behaviour post final. Their exclusion promoted those behind them for each heat and final throughout the weekend.
1. Michael Cheek (Dan Holland Racing) 488 pts
2. James Beacroft (Privateer) 469 pts
3. Luc Oliver (Coles Racing) 451 pts
4. Nathan Chafer (Privateer) 448 pts
5. Chris Wright (Privateer) 435 pts
6. James Moorcroft (Team Clay Racing) 432 pts
The championship moves on to Clay Pigeon in Dorset for the fifth meeting of the season on the third weekend of August, but the British Kart Championships return to action for the TKM, Honda and KZ2 categories at Shenington for their fourth bout of the year.