PF International [PFi] played host to the opening round of the 2022 Wera Tools British Kart Championships for the Rotax and Honda Cadet classes last weekend [6-8 May] and the Lincolnshire circuit provided sensational racing across the categories to kick start their championship in style.
The impressive 1382m track played host to bumper grids across each class with a remarkable 183 karters contesting the weekend’s meeting. Eager drivers in the Rotax Mini Max, Junior and Senior classes, as well as the Honda Cadet category were in action and thrilling weekend of kart-to-kart competition unfolded, with the lengthy circuit providing a myriad of overtaking manoeuvres and first-class racing from Britain’s premier karting series.
After Friday’s practice sessions, Saturday housed timed qualifying and heats, before Sunday’s all-important finals. An impressive 59 Junior Rotax drivers provided the biggest entry list of the season so far and such was the size of the grids, repechage was brought into play to offer those outside of the qualifying places a chance at the finals.
You can catch up with all the action from the weekend over on the MotorsportUK YouTube Channel [HERE].
With 40 contenders kicking off their Mini Max BKC campaign at PFi there would be guaranteed fireworks on track over the weekend. Ultra-close racing throughout the two days of heats and finals saw Scott Marsh [DHR] never far from the front on both days, taking second in qualifying, his heat and the pre-final. It was left to the all-important final to go one better however, taking a convincing victory by over a second from his nearest rival. Marsh now has a 13-point buffer over his rivals heading into round two.
Sebastian Minns [KR-Sport] put in an impressive performance to scoop the fastest lap in the final but couldn’t quite live with Marsh and took the second spot, although a less successful Saturday means he is fourth in the points standings. Noah Wolfe graduates from Honda Cadets in 2022 and proved his pace whatever the category to take the final podium place with Synergy Racing Developments.
Harry Bartle [Croc Promotion] finished just outside of the podium spots but enjoyed a consistent season-opening weekend and is Marsh’s closest points challenger heading into round two.
With the biggest grids of the weekend, Junior Rotax was undoubtedly going to provide a spectacular display and it would be Harry Burgoyne Jnr that scooped a maximum points haul. Top of the combined classification on Saturday, Burgoyne Jnr went on to win the pre-final and final with Strawberry Racing to enjoy the perfect start. Harry Linden was the nearest challenger in second, albeit over one and a half seconds behind across the line in the DHR machine. Brandon Carr lined up sixth on the grid in the final but battled to the podium position in third for KR-Sport after a progressive weekend.
Vinnie Phillips was fourth for Strawberry Racing and another to enjoy a consistent start to the championship, enough to put him third in the points tables after the opener.
All eyes were on the Senior Rotax races of the weekend as almost 50 privateer and team entries launched themselves into the blisteringly fast PFi circuit. It would be DHR’s Matthew Higgins that stole the early march on proceedings with second in qualifying and the opening heat before victory on the final heat of Saturday grabbed him the 65 points.
Second in the PreFinal was a positive start to Sunday before a devastating spark plug failure dropped him out of the lead into retirement during the Final. Callum Bradshaw was never far away all weekend. Taking second in the heat classification for Strawberry Racing, the PreFinal victory set him up perfectly for the Final, battling to the last to take victory by a slender 0.14 seconds from Sean Butcher [KR Sport].
Butcher had a progressive weekend to stand on the podium, as did third-placed Caden McQueen [Zip Factory team] who had an upward trajectory all weekend long to take the final podium place. Sam Gornall was in line for a solid result but dropped eight places in the final.
Coles Racing’s James Lowther deserves a special mention from the weekend, storming up the Final grid a stellar 26 places in the Final from 34th to eighth and taking the fastest lap in the process.
Any racing category is rarely as close as the Honda Cadets and PFi would test the young racers to the limit. It was Synergy Racing Developments’ Cole Denholm who took a maximum haul of points with a near-perfect weekend to win every race contested and a start-to finish Final’s win to open up a 12-point advantage in the standings.
Albert Friend was fourth after Saturday’s Heats but fought his way onto the podium to take second place for SFR Motorsport in the Pre-Final and Final. Jarrett Clark rounded out the podium places for Synergy after getting progressively quicker during the weekend.
The next round for Rotax and Honda Cadets take the racers to Scotland for the popular Larkhall Circuit in June, whilst IAME, TKM, KZ2 and Bambino are up next, heading to Warden Law between 20-23 May.
Registrations are still open for the 2022 Wera Tools British Kart Championships, to register, click [HERE].