The Rotax classes got the new-look British Kart Championships underway at PF International with glorious sunshine and tantalising on-action providing an entertaining first day of the 2019 season.
Saturday saw competitors in the MiniMax, Junior Rotax, Senior Rotax and Rotax 177 classes use the sun-kissed track time to dial in their rapid machines with official practice followed by short-sharp qualifying sessions and racing heats.
The MiniMax class for drivers aged 11-15 got the racing underway. The young-guns did not disappoint as wheel-to-wheel action was assumed right from the off. Practice session two topper Jez Williams missed out on pole in qualifying by one hundredth of a second behind Tristan Rennie. In the afternoon heat it was Williams who held the upper hand as the Vision Motorsport driver crossed the line, just in front of Rennie. The gap, 0.07 after 11 laps of the Lincolnshire venue. The racing was close throughout the field with the top-10 blanketed by a mere 8.5 seconds. Harley Haughton hung onto the coat tails to clinch a top three while fastest lap went to Sam Gornall in sixth, just half a tenth away from a sub minute lap.
The Junior Rotax series for drivers aged 13-17 continued the exciting trend with some real nose to tail racing. Kai Hunter looks to be in inspired form this season and took a lights to checkered flag victory in his Kosmic – but he was pushed hard by Matthew Higgins who has showed an encouraging step in performance this weekend. Higgins finished less than a second behind, while fastest lap honours went to William Elswood in third.
The Senior Rotax class has a mammoth entry this weekend – so much so the entrants were split into two heats. Winning the AvC heat was James Johnson who enjoyed a three-way scrap with Oakley Pryer and Teddy Clinton. The trio were blanketed by six tenths of a second at the fall of the flag -enthralling the spectators in the process.
In the BvD heat, DHR teammates Ben Davies and Bradley Barrett were the class of the field as they came home 1-2 in their Alonso machines. Davies produced a spirited drive and pulled the biggest winning margin so far, at just 2.24 seconds! Morgan Rose rounded out the top three in his Tonykart.
The final track action of the day saw the 177 brigade fight it out at the PF International circuit. Joe Bleackley stormed his way up from fifth on the grid to chalk up the first 177 heat win of the season ahead of Levi King and reining Open Champion James Moorcroft in third.
Action resumes tomorrow with a further two heats for each class and the first two rounds of the 2019 season. You don’t want to miss it!