Fast paced action at Bayford Meadows
Fast paced action at Bayford Meadows

Round 7 of the Bayford Meadows Kart Racing club was held on Sunday. Once again over 100 drivers and their teams packed into the Sittingbourne’s circuit paddock areas, as the racing begins to hot up, as we approach the championship climax.

There were new tyres all around for this event, which threw up a bit of a curve ball for some of the drivers, as they attempted to set their machines up ready to race in the heat, pre-final and main final, that lay ahead on a blustery but dry autumn day.

Bambinos.

As ever the Bambinos started off the afternoon’s finals, with 11 young pilots keen to show that they can race as well as any of the older classes. Sebastian Bearman won an entertaining heat during the morning, as he managed to overtake the erstwhile race leader Jack Blackman over the final lap.

Finishing in 3rd behind the leading two was Jack Cope, happy to be back on the pace after a recent engine rebuild. An under the weather Maria Ruberto took 4th from James Roots and Matthew Lilley. The pre-final was led by the two Jack’s as Sebastian hit troubles on the opening lap, this time Jack Cope took the win over Jack Blackman. Maria was 4th again, from James Roots and Matthew Lilley, as Ella Dixon finished 6th.

The final turned out to be a cracking race as the Jack’s led Maria away from the start, with Cope heading Blackman. Matthew Lilley was on a charge and soon found himself ahead of Maria in 3rd place James Roots was up next in 5th, he had Sebastian Bearman soon for company as he recovered from his disappointing start.

As the race headed towards the finish, Jack B was soon putting pressure on Jack C, with the latter cracking on the 6th lap falling behind the well driven #29 kart of Blackman. Cope did have a try to take the lead back, but failed with a pass onto the infield straight near to the finish.

Blackman it was then, who took his first win, having shown some great improvement over the last couple of races, shortly before he graduates onto Honda Rookies. Cope too was delighted with 2nd after his recent run of bad luck, as he too looks to move up a class soon. 3rd place fell to Maria Ruberto as she looked forward to an early night and a dose of Calpol!

A quite frantic final couple of laps was not just for the privilege of the leading duo, as James Roots and Sebastian Bearman managed to get ahead of Matthew Lilley to take 4th and 5th places. Lilley did take some consolation in 6th as he took the fastest lap of the race.

Ella Dixon and Henry Algar finished 7th and 8th, Riley Taylor almost didn’t make it out for the final as an earlier broken throttle cable nearly put paid to his day’s racing, so he did well to come out ahead of a great race long battle with Regan Mew in 9th and 10th. Arthur Pharoah was unlucky to have only completed one lap of the final.

Senior Club Max 177.

The Senior 177 class only had 7 karts rolling out for their final as Daniel Wright did not start. Billy Watts was in fine form taking both the heat and pre-final wins, although the competition had been close, as Michael Gibbons & Barry Powley both looked very threatening.

Disaster struck Gibbons on the warming up lap of the final as his engine oiled up, leaving him no choice but to pull off and park up watching his rivals from a marshal’s post. Watts led from the start, immediately pulling a gap over Gary Cooper and Powley after a few laps. Dennis Trzeciak was 4th, James “Adam” Pell 5th and Andy Locke 6th.

Powley was putting a lot of pressure on Cooper and eventually found a way past, before setting off after Watts in the lead. Ultimately the aforementioned DG/KRM kart of Watts took the victory, finishing 0.47s ahead of the charging Caveman kart of Powley in 2nd place, who then collected a 5s nose fairing penalty post-race, dropping him to 4th behind Cooper (2nd) & Trzeciak (3rd), although he did secure the fastest lap. Pell was 5th just ahead of Locke(6th) at the finish.

Mini Club Max.

The Mini Club Max was once again very competitive this month, with Lloyd Hare taking the heat win and Tighe Wratten the pre-final victory. Oscar O’Sullivan and Josh Selvadorai had both featured in the two races building up to the final and were keen to make up for ultimately disappointing results, which left them both down on the final grid.

Wratten & Hare led away the front row from the rolling start, but by the end of the lap found themselves in 2nd and 3rd as O’Sullivan had jumped them both to lead, Luca Osman-Price briefly headed Thomas Ingram-Hill for 4th until the positions were reversed at the end of lap 2. Selvadorai had made up one spot from his starting position to be 6th, in front of Mitchell Mulvey, Callum Sims, Ryan Welsh and Ryan Gwenzi.

Back at the front the Project One kart of O’Sullivan was in control of the race and motored onto victory, finishing 1.2s ahead of Wratten, who had dispatched Hare on lap 5 before closing down on the leader to take the runner up slot. Hare crossed the finish line in 3rd only to find that he had collected a nose fairing penalty along the way, dropping him down the order to 7th.

Ingram-Hill put up a spirited drive to keep Selvadorai behind him for most of the race, succumbing to the pressure 3 laps from the end, leaving Selvadorai in 3rd. Mulvey finished 5th behind Ingram-Hill, after passing Osman-Price towards the end of the race. Sims was 8th behind the penalised Hare, Welsh took 9th and Gwenzi completed an awful day at the office with retirement after just 2 laps. Wratten’s pace was proven with the fastest lap, nearly 0.2s faster than the race winners.

Junior Subaru.

The two qualifying races for the Junior Subaru class provided plenty of drama, with Liam Thomas and Bentley Lovegrove-Fowler coming together early on in the morning’s heat, with an incident that had Thomas’s kart delicately balanced on his rival, which lasted virtually from the exit of turn 1 all the way down to turn 2 ! Unfortunately for Ryan Dell this proved to be the end of his day’s racing, as he got caught up in the pair’s shenanigans damaging his kart’s chassis beyond immediate repair.

In the pre-final “Jet Pack Boy” – Lovegrove-Fowler shot to the front, passing both heat winner William Fallon and Ciaron Edgson in one blistering move into turn 1! Thomas too managed to work his way forward up from the back to run second, immediately putting pressure on the leader, only to then overcook an overtake attempt to drop back again, so it was Lovegrove-Fowler who started the final from the pole position.

Edgson shared the front row with the pre-final winner, Fallon and Thomas lined next on the second row. The KRM pair of Jace Goslett and Dextor Gregory filled row 3 and their fellow KRM teammate Jack Baker sat alone on row 4.

After the dramas of earlier in the day the final was a relatively quiet affair – Lovegrove-Fowler led away Edgson and Fallon, with Thomas next up building himself up for a charge to the front in 4th, Goslett and Gregory in 5th and 6th soon lost their teammate Baker as he disappeared off of the leaderboard after 5 laps.

By lap 4 Thomas had climbed up to 2nd and we all waited in anticipation of another heated duel between the rivals, however thankfully following one aborted overtaking attempt on the infield of the circuit, the positions remained the same until the end of the race, as Lovegrove-Fowler crossed the line with clenched fists raised in 1st place, Thomas was only 0.14s behind with the fastest lap in 2nd place. Edgson had a lonely race in 3rd place ahead of good dice between Fallon and Goslett, with the latter Goslett taking 4th, Fallon 5th and Gregory 6th.

Junior Club Max.

After the way that he dominated last month’s Junior Club Max class, we were expecting Roalf racing’s Max Lee to continue his form on Sunday, however due to a mechanical issue in qualifying he started the morning heat down in 13th place. Sebastian Morgan took full advantage of this as he topped the session and then went on to take the heat win. Amazingly from Lee who amazingly went from 13th to 2nd in one lap!

He was just 0.54s behind at the finish and looked a real threat to Morgan in the pre-final. Things didn’t pan out so well for Lee in the pre-final though, after a poor opening lap saw him having to fight his way back from 5th, he eventually finished 3rd behind winner Morgan and GMS driver Joshua Pattrick, Finley Watson finished 4th, from Finlay Underwood gong well in 5th, with Oliver Hutchings in 6th.

Morgan led away the final and immediately put in some consistently rapid laps, pulling a small gap over Pattrick, Lee ran 3rd, with Watson initially 4th, before he slipped back, eventually tangling with Hutchings in quite dramatic fashion which terminated Hutchings race, with a badly damaged radiator putting him out on the spot. Ryan Micallef had an excellent opening to the race, putting his Ken Ricks Motorsport kart up into 4th in 2 laps after starting 7th.

Daniel Hughes managed to nip ahead of Underwood for 5th as the two ran in those positions to the finish. At the front Morgan was in control and really didn’t look threatened all race to take his maiden victory in the class. Lee managed to usurp Pattrick at around half race distance to finish 2nd 1.19s behind Morgan with fastest lap in the bag too.

Pattrick was clear of Micallef in 3rd, likewise Micaleff was over 1s ahead of the Hughes/Underwood duo in 4th, 5th & 6th. The GMS pairing of Alexander Adams-Acton and Ben Cooke avoided the mid-pack mayhem to finish in 7th & 8th as the two swapped positions over the closing few laps. John Ward finished 9th and Louis Bates 10th.

Senior Club Max.

The largest entry of the day was for the Senior Club Max class, with 29 karts appearing for the morning qualifying session. The competition throughout the field was of a high standard with just 1 second covering James Tomsett who topped the session and Harrison Newick down in 20th place. As is usual now for the class, the drivers split into three groups A,B & C, with each having two heats before a B final and then the main final later in the afternoon.

The winners of the heats were Tomsett taking two victories and Riley Stephenson on his return to the circuit after a break taking the other, both driving for the GMS Motorsport team. This left Tomsett on the pole for the final, with Stephenson alongside, row 2 had last month’s winner Kieran Ives and another returnee Oliver Bullion next to him.

Jonathan Wilkes and Joseph Gethen completed row 3, next up were Elliot Rice and Arjun Mehta on row 4. A very close top 10 was completed by Caitlin May and Zac Dear on row 5.

The four lucky qualifiers from the B final to join onto the back of the A final, were Luke Winter, Will Barnes, William Tidman and James Cutting.

At the green light on the rolling start Tomsett held his cool to lead into turn 1, from Ives who had made the most of his inside grid slot to move in front of Stephenson as they turned right and headed down to the first hairpin, the 24 karts making for a spectacular sight as they snaked their way around the opening lap, commendably without any major off track incidents.

Going into turn 1 on the 2nd lap Ives took Tomsett by surprise by diving down the inside and taking the lead, then managing to hold onto the position on the run down to hairpin 1. Stephenson, Bullion & Wilkes were next up, Gethen & Rice were swapping places, with the former coming out in front, Mehta too managed to pass the FMR kart of an off form Rice, as they ran 6th, 7th& 8th.

May had won a battle with Dear over the opening laps and also managed to clear Rice to move into 8th by lap 6. At the head of the leading pack, Ives held station over Tomsett and looked comfortable heading the train in his Gtech run kart, Stephenson was there in 3rd, ready to pounce on any mistake ahead of him, as were both FMR driver Bullion and Project One’s Wilkes.

The 14 lap race seemed to flyby and before we knew it the last lap had begun, it did seem as though the race would end with the drivers holding their positions, as they found it so difficult to pass with such evenly matched karts, but Tomsett knew that he had the pace to beat Ives after his early double victories.

He made his attempt to pass the Gtech kart at the tight left hander that leads onto the infield straight, it was a move that has worked successfully in the past for notably Jack Bartholomew; this time however it wasn’t to be for the brave Tomsett, as Ives had already committed to his normal racing line for the corner, Tomsett rode over the inside kerb and tried to steer away from Ives’s machine but got out of shape and glanced the side of the number 47 Gtech kart.

In an instant Ives was heading off onto the grass on the outside of the corner, where he somehow managed to stay out of the tyre barrier before rejoining the circuit now at the back of the leading train. Tomsett had held onto the lead but was unsettled and Stephenson saw his chance to take the place which he managed to pull off, Bullion also taking advantage following him through.

They crossed the finish line in the order of Stephenson, Bullion, Tomsett, Wilkes and Ives, although after a stewards video review post-race, Tomsett was docked a lap for his pass on Ives, moving Wilkes and Ives up to 3rd and 4th. Gethen took 5th, Mehta 6th, Rice moved back ahead of May for 7th. With May in 8th, Dear took 9th and Ben Slipper completed the top 10. The fastest lap was set on lap 7 by Kieran Ives.

Honda Cadet & Rookies.

With 26 karts entered in the combined Rookie and Cadet Honda classes, a B final was needed to finalise the 24 kart grid. The deserved winner of this was Rylan Blake, as he had been involved in a nasty looking startline crash in his morning’s heat along with Nate Gange, where thankfully both drivers were able to go onto start their second heat races. Going through into the A final along with Blake were Connor J Winfield, Ethan Page and Johannes Friis.

Fletcher Jamieson continued his fine form by qualifying on the pole position for the Cadet A final, he had Jonas Klimas alongside him on the front row. The top two qualifiers in the Rookie class were Harry Freeman & Albert Lapper. From the start Klimas led Jamieson as the pair set off on a race long duel, Freeman controlled the Rookie class, he had Lapper and Alfie Mew 2nd & 3rd in class behind him.

Cadet driver Antony Parfett was keen to pass the Rookie drivers and soon moved up onto Freeman’s bumper ahead of Lapper & Mew. Rookie driver Hayden Butcher had been next up in the Rookie class until he ended up in the tyre barrier on the exit of the rise, Rio Licata, Andrew Dixon ( Cadets) were 8th & 9th overall and Riley Till (Rookie) was running 10th at two thirds distance.

Jamieson had hit the front on lap 5 and led until the last lap when Klimas, who had been shadowing him, took the lead at turn 1, for the remainder of the lap “Flat out Fletch” tried his hardest to grab the lead back, failing by just 0.08s at the finish, Klimas taking the closest of wins!

Immediately behind this pair the Rookie battle was reaching its climax as Mew had moved ahead of Lapper and then on the last lap he passed Parfett too, moving onto Freeman’s tail, just failing to mount a challenge on Freeman as the duo crossed the finish line.

Parfett took 3rd in the Cadet class and Lapper 3rd in the Rookie class. Licata & Dixon finished 4th & 5th in the Cadet class, Till and Joel Bullen 4th & 5th in the Rookie class. Both winners set their classes’ respective fastest laps on the 9th lap of the race, highest place mover was Blake, who impressed by climbing up 9 positions to finish 12th overall.

Full results from the event can be found here – https://results.alphatiming.co.uk/bmkr/2021/7/

Round 8 of the BMKR championship will take place on November 21st.

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