RESULTS: Freshers Karting

Skinner Slides to Fresher’s Karting Victory

Last Tuesday saw the opening round of the Edinburgh University Motor Sport Club’s karting championship commence in furious fashion. With 40 drivers present, two-thirds of them in their rookie season, it promised to be an action-packed evening.

The format for the evening consisted of 5 heats for each driver, where points were accumulated in an attempt to qualify for the final. The opening few victories were shared amongst the veterans; Steven Campbell, Nick Roberts, club captain Kirsten Dallas and serial second-place man Scott Douglas. The newcomers were still getting to grips with the circuit, but their times were competitive. In heat 6 Rosalind Gisbey picked up a 3rd place finish, and then in heat 9 the first rookie win of the night was recorded as Patrick NG managed to hold off Matt Holland.

This filled all the Freshers with confidence and in the very next heat they took all three podium positions, with Sally Skinner coming in third, Craig Horsburgh second, and Ben Doyle getting his first heat win. The standard of racing just got better as the night went on and this led to some slightly optimistic manoeuvres being thrown around in the heat of battle. The Hughes brothers, Ross and double-champion Calum, enjoyed their usual brusing clash, resulting in Ross getting a black flag. Afterwards he gave his analysis of the incident; “Here’s what happened, right. He started it and I finished it!”

One heat in particular, involving lots of experienced drivers, became hugely scrappy. Captain Dallas was, for once, on the receiving end – finding herself buried in the barriers three times. Gary Brown and Adam Corlett were having their own private tussle for second. Brown deservedly received a warning from the marshals for shunting Corlett out of the way although Corlett, not satisfied, took his own retribution by viciously tailgating Brown’s kart all the way to the end of the race. Brown refused to succumb and took second-place, with Scott Douglas clear in first.

With the heats wrapped up Scott Douglas qualified top of the table, joint on points with Nick Roberts but just pipping him with a faster fastest lap of 29.065. Adam Corlett qualified third after a solid night’s racing. However it wasn’t a night for the veterans, it was all about the freshers, of which the top 16 made up the two finals. In the ‘B’ final all the drivers were very evenly matched, resulting in very few overtakes, however this didn’t detract from the quality of racing. Kai Weng dropped from 2nd to 4th leaving the podium positions to James Beaven, James Mollard and the winner, after withstanding late pressure from Mollard, was Callum Macfarlane.

The quality of the racing in the ‘A’ final was such that you would not have thought all the veterans had been sidelined. There were some quality overtakes, and far less argy-bargy than was seen in the heats. After 10 laps of racing Sally Skinner claimed the top prize from pole, with the brilliantly consistent Patrick NG behind in second and a battling Craig Horsburgh in third.

So Sally Skinner was crowned Fresher’s Karting Champion. With a string of rapid performances and a fastest lap of 29.947 she may well be worrying the established order this season. With five more rounds to go, the championship next heads to Falkirk later this month.