The weather conditions were ideal for the first round of the CIK-FIA European Superkart Championship of 2018 at Donington on 2nd and 3rd June. The favourites were unsurprisingly fastest, but the pack appeared homogeneous, allowing many Drivers to aspire to a reasonable finish. The progress of the two races was similar and the German Peter Elkmann, the 2017 Champion, dominated the racing without surprises.
From Qualifying Practice the order stayed faithful to the predictions and allowed Peter Elkmann (DEU – Anderson / VM) to take pole position with 1’27”063 ahead of Adam Kout (CZE – MS Kart / DEA), the double Champion in 2015 and 2016, but only by four tenths. Liam Morley (GBR – Anderson / DEA) was not far off with a time of 1’27”692. The second session was slower except for Andreas Jost (DEU – Anderson / VM). He had broken his engine in the morning and managed to seize a place on the front row next to Elkmann and in front of Kout and Morley. Yannick De Brabander (BEL – MS Kart / VM), the winner here last year, was relegated to the third row with Daniel Clark (GBR – Anderson / VM), the top six drivers all under 1’28 ”.
At the start of Race 1, Elkmann kept the advantage in front of Kout, with De Brabander keen to infiltrate, while Morley and Jost had let themselves be surprised. Marcel Maasmann (NLD – Anderson / VM) stuck to Jost with a slender margin to Clark. Although the order did not change during the first third of the race, the gaps widened and Elkmann escaped inexorably. Morley accelerated and overtook De Brabander, while Jost was closing too. Maasmann was running on his own, because Clark had been forced to retire.
The pack was led by Carl Hulme (GBR – Anderson / VM). At halfway Morley, then 3rd, had to give up because of a faulty water pump. Jost, three seconds behind Kout, recovered a podium position. De Brabander was hindered by a spin. He did, however, manage to restart to finish 11th. The top three had been decided, each one accentuating his lead over his rival and leaving the rest of the pack at a distance. Maasmann took 4th place ahead of Hulme and Mark Verhaar (NLD – MS Kart / VM).
In Race 2, the start was almost a copy of the previous one when the lights went out, Elkmann keeping the lead, Kout on the outside but trying to tuck in behind him. Jost locked up at the first braking point, but did not resist Morley and De Brabander for long. Hulme and Clark followed after the first lap.
The difference between the two races was that Kout would remain in ambush for the duration of the race, without giving the impression of being able to attack Elkmann. Clark was once again the first outsider to retire. And as before, Morley had to give up at halfway again, as his problem had obviously not been solved. Behind the two leaders who escaped, Jost passed De Brabander then distanced him. Hulme, then 6th, also broke down. The podium remained unchanged, with Elkmann winning a double in front of Kout and Jost. De Brabander finished 4th this time, much further up, and Maasmann added another valuable 5th place before the Assen round. Leo Kurstjens (NLD – Kart MS / VM) in 6th place replaced his compatriot Verhaar.
In the Championship, positions are clear after this double result with Elkmann (50 points) leading ahead of Kout (40 points) and Jost (32 points). The next Competition will take place at Assen on 18th and 19th August.
- full results HERE