This weekend BrKC was on so the grid was only big enough for 3 heats and a final, as opposed to there being 4 heats, and 2 finals. This situation is similar to round 6. In heat 1, I was starting in P3, in heat 2 I was 18th. In the final heat, I was in 8th for my middle start.
As always I really struggled for pace on Friday, my front tires felt like they just weren’t working at all. Even with my setup highly swayed towards loads of front-end grip, they just weren’t working. My best lap was a 47.3, which was set right in the middle of the day. However, my average lap time was slower than a 47.6, about 5 tenths off the pace.
In the first session, I swapped tires with my teammate, to see if it was all the kart or partly me that was causing me to be slow on Friday. This fixed my pace issue as I was now right up there on lap times. For the second session, we put my tires back on and my pace went right back out the window (literally). For the final session, we decided to scrub in my new tires, I would go out and as soon as I felt like the shine was off them, I would come in. Before I came in I was right up there on pace, setting a 47.0 which put me in 3rd place on the timing.
In the first heat, I was starting in p3. I was quicker than the pole sitter but was a bit slower than 2nd and 4th place. My plan was, to get passed the pole sitter ASAP then try to keep with the other two drivers. Into turn 1, on lap 1, 2nd and 4th got passed me and into 1st and 2nd. I was still behind the pole sitter, so was now in 4th. Into Christmas corner, I sent it up the inside and got back up into 3rd. Into Ashby, the driver behind divebombed me and moved me back into p4. By the end of the first lap, I was already over 2 seconds behind the leaders due to the time I lost being stuck behind the pole sitter.
On lap 2, my teammate came passed up the hill into turn 3 after I ran a bit wide out of turn 1. I was now down to 5th and I knew that if I wanted a good position, I had to keep with him. I failed to do this as onto lap 6 the gap was 2 seconds. During this lap, I made another mistake through turn 2, allowing the driver behind to pull alongside up the hill. On lap 8, I got really bogged down through the boot, letting the driver behind come passed into the last corner. I was now in p7. On lap 13, the final lap, the driver in 5th spun out of turn 2, moving me up into 6th. Somehow, I had picked up a drop-down during the race, giving me a penalty and moving me down to 10th.
For the second heat, I was starting in 18th for my back-of-grid start. I wanted a top 10 which would get me decent points towards the final starting position. I took it easy through the first few corners, not wanting to get a drop-down while fighting slower drivers. Into Christmas I stayed on the outside, hoping to gain a few places there. This worked as going into Ashby, I had gained 2 places. Through this corner someone got pushed wide, moving me up into 15th. Into the boot, I sent someone on the brakes. After this overtake the driver in 13th went too wide on entry to the first right-hander of the boot. This effectively gave the position so I was not in 13th. On lap 2, I made the same double-overtake through the boot. I was now in 11th and was right behind 10th.
On lap 3, the driver ahead missed his braking point into Christmas corner, making it very easy for me to get up into 10th. I stayed there I was until the 6th lap when the driver ahead ran too wide out of the final corner, just clipping the wall and sending him into a spin and moving me up into 9th. On the following lap, into Christmas the driver behind sent it on the brakes, moving me back down to 10th. Later on, during the same lap, the Battenburg flag came out because of the crash in the final corner. This neutralized the race and brought down all of the gaps. On the lap before we were about to get racing again, I got brake checked into the boot, handing me a drop-down and a 5-second penalty.
On the lap of the restart, I got a really bad exit out of the second corner, allowing the driver behind to pull alongside and get past into Christmas corner. I was now down to 11th but I knew that I could get back into 10th. On lap 11, the penultimate lap, the drivers ahead were fighting through Ashby, one of them being squeezed wide and giving me p10. I stayed in 10th for the rest of this lap and the whole of the final lap. I finished in 10th but with the penalty, I fell all the way down to 17th!
For the third heat, I was starting in 8th place. On the exit of turn 2, someone behind me spun. This caused a huge pile-up and there was immediately a Battenburg. After a few corners, this turned into a red flag. When we got going again I was starting in 7th after someone that started in front was involved in the crash. When we got going again, I immediately got passed someone into turn 1. The pole sitter then spun in Christmas corner moving me up into 5th. Into Inkermans I manage to pull alongside the driver ahead, this gave me the opportunity to get past into Ashbys so with the overtake I was now up in 4th.
On lap 2, I got overtaken into Christmas after I broke slightly too early. Up until lap 10, I stayed in 5th place, right behind the leaders but not being able to get close enough to make an overtake. On this lap, the driver in 3rd spun and went all the way down to last. This moved me up to 4th. This is where I finished but somehow I got another dropdown. After the penalty, I was classified in 10th place.
With a 17th and 2 10th, I was starting in 9th for the final. Into Christmas on the first lap, I ran a bit wide, almost allowing the kart behind to get past. I just about kept them behind so I stayed in 9th. I then sent it up the inside of Ashby and got up into 8th. On lap 2, I was stuck behind a slower driver. To get past I had to absolutely send it on the brakes, only just making the apex. Luckily I did so I was now up into 7th. Onto lap 3, there was nearly a 1-second gap so it would take a lot to catch back up. I was slowly catching up until the 6th lap when I was right on the back of the front pack.
During this lap, 2 drivers in front got squeezed onto the grass on the exit of Ashby, moving me up into 5th place. On lap 10, into the boot, the driver behind sent it up the inside, moving me down to 6th. This overtake bogged me down, meaning the driver behind could get alongside and get past into the final corner. In 2 corners I had gone from 5th to 7th.
After this, I began to notice I had no acceleration, so we had gone too low on the jet. All the way to the final lap the gap to the pack in front slowly grew. On the final lap, the driver fighting for 3rd got squeezed out on the exit of Ashby. This gave me one more place and moved me up into 6th. I finished here as there were no penalties ahead. I was a little disappointed as I definitely had the pace for the podium but it was still my best WMKC final finish of the season.