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Sun shines at Bayford Meadows
Sun shines at Bayford Meadows

The sun was shining for the second round of the Bayford Meadows Kart Racing club’s winter series on Sunday and the early morning chilly breeze gave way to a pleasant afternoon, by the time the first of the finals were underway.

Senior Club Max.

Class numbers were down to single figures for this month’s Senior Club Max final, with nine drivers taking part. Last month’s winner Declan Russell was once again the main man to beat throughout the day, as he dominated the morning’s Heat and the Pre final before romping to a comfortable 2.3s win the Final in his Evolution kart.

His fastest lap of a 46.70s lap proved to be the quickest over the 12 lap race. Lewie Weaver made a welcome return to the circuit in the new for ’23 CKR kart and finished runner up to winner Russell, 5s ahead of an exciting battle for third, which eventually fell to Stefan Kaczmarczyk after he had been delayed in a first lap incident down at hairpin 1.

His Roalf racing kart nipped ahead of Josh Pullen towards the end of the race, with Pullen ending up 4th overall. Ciaron Edgson took 5th after starting 7th as he managed to pass a fast starting Frederic Lecomte, who had made the best out of the first lap mix up to run 3rd at one stage, before slipping down to 6th. Ella Haines was another welcome returnee to the class as she took 7th, Michael Thompson finished 8th as Tom Rotherham who started 4th retired after the first lap.


Just three of the Bambino karts were entered for round 2 of the series this month. Louis Williams-Mabbs had the perfect day by taking wins in all three of the races, his margin of victory was 7s and he recorded the fastest race lap too at a 1:03.52s. Freddie Williams and last month’s winner Beau Blundell enjoyed a race long battle over second place with Williams coming out on top of the thrilling dice.

Honda Cadet 160/200.

The Honda Cadets were split into two groups for this month, after last month’s initial trial caused one or two issues. The six karts in each group kept the grid looking symmetrical, with the 200s starting a few seconds ahead of the more established 160s.

Both classes provided us with some great racing – however the three way fight for the lead in the 200s had everyone on the edge of their seats; Pre final victor – Jack Cope had lead away from Freddie Wall and Heat winner Ronnie Smart over the opening laps, as the trio ran nose to tail keeping the racing clean at all times.

Cope was doing a stellar job in holding the other two back before his steely defence cracked on the 7th of 10 laps, with Wall taking the initiative. Over the remaining laps Wall managed to resist the pressure from Cope and Smart to take his maiden win, just 0.18s ahead of Cope in 2nd, Smart was within half a second of the two ahead, as he took the fastest lap at 52.85s.

Riley Taylor started his day on the back foot as his engine gave up the ghost in qualifying, he couldn’t live with the battling trio ahead on his way to 4th place. 5th & 6th went to Harvey Turner and Harry Grant, who finished nose to tail.

Johannes Friis had a superlative day in the 160 class as he cruised to a 3 second win over Harrison Page, who had gone from 3rd to 2nd early on and held off a charging Lewis Riley towards the end of the race.

The latter had lost places at the start and recovered well to take the runner up slot from a fast starting Dylan Glasgow, who struggled all day to match the pace that he had last month to finish 4th. 5TH & 6TH went to a battling Ricky Mackintosh and Alfie Clark. Winner Friis set the fastest 160 lap at 53.42s.

Rotax 177 Club Max.

The 177 Club Max class was light at just 6 runners for this round and this was further depleted after the morning Heat, as Alex Joyner DNS for the rest of the day. Round 1 winner Adam Clark looked on course to take the Pre final win until he was passed by CKR driver Alex Magee on the last lap. Clark then lost out on the first lap of the final to lose ground on pole sitter Magee, as he fell behind fast starter Tyler Cox at the start.

Magee took the chance to open up an insurmountable lead while Clark fought to pass a pumped up Cox. The latter held on for 8 laps before Clark moved ahead taking 2nd behind winner Magee. Cox took 3rd from Daniel Wright in 4th and Dennis Trzeciak in 5th. The fastest lap went to Clark on the last as he set a time of 47.51 in his pursuit of winner Magee.

Rotax Inter.

The ultra-rapid Rotax Inter class karts were on next. An inter-team project One battle had been the highlight of the day up until the final, as Harry Freeman and Albie Lapper fought tooth and nail for overall honours. Freeman took the Pre final win from Heat winner Lapper towards the end of the race, after letting his teammate know he was on his bumper with a couple of “love taps” before taking the upper hand.

In the main final Freeman and Lapper once again streaked clear of Laurie McVeigh in 3rd who couldn’t live with their pace but was comfortably ahead of Adam Turecek, Will Archer and Max Wheatley in 4th, 5th & 6th. Ayda Sexton and Lucas Knibbs ran in 7th & 8th. As the laps ticked by Lapper couldn’t find a way past the well driven kart of Freeman and had to settle for 2nd place 0.2s behind, Freeman therefore doubling up on his wins for this year and setting the fastest lap to boot at 49.37s.

The positions behind remained the same throughout, McVeigh taking 3rd, Turecek, Archer and Wheatley running close in 4th, 5th & 6th. Sexton was a little way back but safely ahead of Knibbs as they finished 7th & 8th.

Junior Club Max.

Arguably the most competitive final of the day was up next with the 17 Junior Club Max karts heading out onto the grid. The Pre final had been a cracker of a race with Liam Thomas leading a large slice of the race before Finley Underwood took a turn in the lead, this didn’t last long though as Jack Baker usurped him to take the win and the all-important inside grid slot for the Final. Oscar O’Sullivan and Fletcher Jamieson watched on from 4th and 5th and were sure to be there or there abouts in the Final. 

The start took a couple of attempts to be up and running and when it did Baker and Thomas took control at the front. Round 1 winner Underwood had a poor first lap, finding himself 5th behind Jamieson and O’Sullivan in 3rd & 4th. Next up was George Barker who had a clean start into 6th but couldn’t quite live with the quintet ahead. Callum Sims and Luca Osman-Price fought over 7th behind Barker, Kristian Stefanov and Felix Stolkin did the same over 9th & 10th.

Thomas led the early laps having found a way past Baker’s Roalf racing kart, tellingly though he wasn’t pulling away and by lap 6 Baker was ahead of Thomas’s GMS machine. The pair were both up for the win, with Thomas keen to keep momentum up in his push for the series and Baker keen was to build on his maiden class win in the Pre final. Underwood meanwhile had found his way past O’Sullivan and then Jamieson before closing in on the leaders. Baker and Thomas swapped positions again with the latter ahead until the last lap when Baker grasped the lead back going onto the final lap.

All eyes were watching the lead battle over that last lap as Baker tried his best to hold onto his tenacious lead, Thomas saw a chance at the right hand infield hairpin nudging Baker wide and then the two ran side by side through the left onto the infield straight. Underwood took a deeper line into the corner and had a great run at the pair along the straight, the karts were 3 wide at one point. Thomas held the line into the segment around the mound to lead Underwood, Baker came unstuck here as he and Jamieson touched leaving him out wide and dropping places. As they crossed the finish line it was Thomas who was celebrating with Underwood breathing down his neck behind.

Jamieson, O’Sullivan and Barker had jumped Baker at the finish. However the result changed as soon as they had time to unwind in Parc ferme’ as Thomas and Barker had picked up a 5s nose drop penalties, relegating them to 5th & 8th respectively.

The overall win went to Underwood, from Jamieson 2nd, O’Sullivan 3rd, Baker taking 4th, Thomas 5th, Osman-Price 6th, Stefanov 7th, Barker 8th, Ryan Welsh 9th and Sims (5s penalty) in 10th. The winner also collected the fastest lap with a 47s time, which topped a great recovery drive from Underwood. 

Rotax Cadet.

The Rotax Cadet class attracted 6 entries again this month with Matthew Lilley and Franklin Street joining the grid. Akille Nane Giannone was the one to beat after taking wins in the Heat and Pre final from Lilley and Street/Henry King respectively. Giannone led away the Final and had Lilley shadowing him from the start.

King soon took control of third from Street, Lewis Herbertson and Ellis Honey. Lilley then took a turn at leading for lap on the fourth tour before Giannone grabbed it back. The two continued to fight hard and fair for the win until their 10 laps were up, with just 0.47s separating them at the finish, Giannone taking the win and fastest lap (53.40s). King’s newly livered GMS kart took a 3rd half a second ahead of the Roalf livered kart of Street in 4th. Herbertson and Honey crossed the line on 5th & 6th.

Junior Rookie/Junior Libre (22).

The last race of the day was for the Junior Rookie class and the Libre Mini Club Max entries. On the front row of the grid sat Kajus Zygmanta and Presley Walker, next up was Joel Bullen and Jack Robinson. Row 3 consisted of Dejaun Bennett and Bryon Scott Simmons, behind them on row 4 were Kosti Dzharov & Connor Tubby. Ethan Page & Freddie Leppenwell completed the top 10 of the 15 kart grid. Starting from the pole in the Mini Club Max class was Harry Russell.

As the green light signalled the start of the race pole man Zygmanta led into turn 1, with Walker tucked up behind him. Bullen led Robinson in 3rd & 4th while Bennett dropped behind Tubby and Scott-Simmons. Walker had had a nightmare Heat when his kart failed on him and then drove brilliantly to come back to finish 2nd in the Pre final, so everyone expected him to pass Zygmanta early on in the Final, this didn’t happen though as the blue kart of Zygmanta was being driven very well in the lead, holding Walker off.

Bullen too was doing a good job of keeping Robinson behind in the battle for third. As we approached the last segment of the race Walker felt his tyres kick in and he made his move on the leader, successfully passing and then pulling a gap over the closing laps to take the win and fastest lap, a 47.51s. Zygmanta was under no pressure in 2nd as he finished 1.41s behind the winner.

Robinson eventually found his way past his Project one teammate to take 3rd, with Bullen finishing 4th. Tubby took a stellar 5th not threatened throughout and remaining close to the top 4. Bennett finished 6th as Scott-Simmons retired, Page was 7th ahead of Leppenwell, Dextor Gregory and Max Osbourne.

Russell comfortably took the Mini Club Max win and fastest lap, from Riley Mason-Lewis and Louie Millington.

The final round of the Winter series will be held on March 19th.

Full results from the event can be found here – https://results.alphatiming.co.uk/bmkr/e/112384