Top performance by Kas Haverkort with a strong finish after leading the final at the FIA Karting European Championship in Le Mans
During the deciding round of the FIA European Karting Championship in France last weekend, Kas Haverkort was a front-runner throughout the event, also leading the final of the OK class in the early phase against some of the world’s best senior drivers, to eventually take a hard-fought sixth place across the line.
On the 1,384 metre Le Mans Karting International circuit, the 15-year old Team Netherlands talent drove five very strong heats, with which he was able to set himself up to start P5 for the final Sunday, where he had the prospect of a podium finish. Unfortunately, Haverkort had to surrender some positions in the closing stages, yet still secured a credible sixth place in the extremely competitive field, once again showing his underlying talent and true fighting spirit.
After the first two rounds of the FIA Karting European Championship, he was lacking essential points due to ongoing engine problems and missed the third round, so the 2019 title was out of reach for Kas Haverkort. This meant that the young driver who resides in Rheezerveen, Overijssel went into the fourth and final edition of the competition aiming only for the day’s success. That Kas, who drives for the Dutch CRG Keijzer Racing team, is currently one the fastest drivers became clear again at the famous circuit of Le Mans in France. In the qualifying, Haverkort set eleventh best time in the international field of 67 competitive karters. This secured a second row place for fourth on the start grid in all five heats he would contest.
The Team NL talent proved his class in the qualifiers. Haverkort made up one position from the start in heat 1 before advancing to P2 a little later in the race. In the second heat he maintained fourth place, with the CRG Keijzer racing driver then claiming victory in heat 3 under some difficult conditions. On the slowly drying track, Haverkort got up to the front and held his lead to the race end. In the fourth heat he showed his confidence and ability to overtake once again, after falling back to P9 during the hustle in the first lap, where he fought his way through to fifth. In the final qualifying heat, Haverkort assured himself of second place in the wake of the winner.
With these impressive results, the young Dutch karting talent ideally qualified fifth for Sunday’s final, in which only the best 34 drivers participate. In the 22-lap showdown, Haverkort had an excellent start and within sight of a podium for quite some time. In the initial lap, he immediately moved up from P5 to P3, taking the lead just one lap later. By half-race distance, the CRG pilot was still second, but fell back to fifth in the shuffle. In the laps that followed, he gave it everything possible to stay on the pace and finished a brilliant sixth in the closing lap, where all the action was still happening up to the chequered flag.
Kas Haverkort –“I am satisfied with the qualifying heats, but less with the final. I lacked just a bit of power so I could not pull away from the others when I was able to get to the lead. Otherwise, I know I would have been on the podium. However, I’m happy with the progress we have made compared to the previous rounds of the championship this year and now already looking forward to the World Championship in Finland at the beginning of September. I am confident that we can be at the top.”