Marijn Kremers currently leads the ranking at the KZ World Championship in Italy this weekend. The Ricciardo Kart driver qualified fastest and has won two heats so far. The event has been hit by rain and changeable weather. The last of the heats and all the finals will be streamed tonight.
from FIA Karting
The evolution of the weather situation has again played an important role in the 18 Qualifying Heats held on Saturday, 3rd October at Lonato. The heavy rain in the morning was followed by sunny weather that allowed the track to dry out. Kremers (NLD) managed to keep the advantage in KZ, Giannoni (ITA) leads in KZ2 and Gubenko in the Academy.
The rain that fell on the circuit of Lonato in the morning can be described as deluges. In view of this exceptional situation, race director Nigel Edwards gave special instructions to the participants. After this difficult period, he made a point of thanking the drivers for their responsible behaviour, especially those in the KZ2 category, which allowed the competition to run smoothly.
In spite of their caution, many drivers did not manage to keep their front fairings in the correct position in the rain and the 5″ penalties affected the rankings. As soon as the sun returned, the competitors increased the pace as the racing line and then the track dried and the number of collisions increased accordingly. The current positions in the rankings of the heats were impacted by these two phenomena.
Six heats, three in KZ2, two in Academy and one in KZ, remain to be run on Sunday morning before the Finals and the battle will be of the utmost importance to qualify in a good position before fighting for the titles. The information below is mentioned in anticipation of possible future sporting decisions.
KZ: TWO VICTORIES FOR KREMERS
The poleman Marijn Kremers (NLD) took two important victories in the two Qualifying Heats of the FIA Karting World Championship – KZ. Jeremy Iglesias (FRA) was very consistent with his two third places which allowed him to move ahead of Stan Pex (NLD), who was delayed in Heat 1 and second in the winner’s wheeltracks in Heat 2. Not far from this leading trio, Bas Lammers (NLD) and Adrien Renaudin (FRA) were neck and neck.
GUBENKO AHEAD OF ZILISCH IN THE ACADEMY
The four heats of the FIA Karting Academy Trophy had four different winners. Alexander Gubenko (RUS) took a slight lead with a second place in addition to his victories, as opposed to a fourth for the others. The consistency of Tom Braeken (BEL) and Matteo De Palo (ITA), with one 2nd and one 3rd place each, allowed them to finish in a tie ahead of the two other winners, Theo Micouris (GBR) and Ivan Dominigues (POR), who are now at the gates of the top five. Fast, but lacking success, Macéo Capietto (FRA) was outside the top 10.
KZ2: GIANNONI AND CUNATI AHEAD OF GUSTAVSSON
It was in the heats of the FIA Karting International Super Cup – KZ2 that the battles and twists and turns were the most frequent among the 99 participants who had twelve races on their programme. Arthur Carbonnel (FRA), who won three consecutive races, crashed in his last heat and left the lead group. Lorenzo Giannoni (ITA) is for the moment in the best position, against Simone Cunati (ITA) on full attack and the poleman Viktor Gustavsson (SWE). Not far behind Matteo Zanchi (ITA), Leonardo Marseglia (ITA) has come back well from his 25th position in Qualifying. Jean Luyet (CHE) managed to get the better of Benjamin Tornqvist (SWE), just in front of Carbonnel.
PROVISIONAL PROGRAMME OF THE LONATO COMPETITION
Sunday 4th October
- 08:00 – 09:55 (European time): Warm-up
- 10:00 – 11:55: Qualifying Heats
- 12:55 – 15:50: Finals
Qualifying Day Report
A very satisfying field of 162 drivers are competing in the FIA Karting Competition in Lonato, divided into three categories: 33 in KZ, 99 in KZ2 and 31 in Academy. Free Practice took place on a wet track which dried out gradually during the day while remaining subject to the movements of the clouds. Qualifying was marked by rapid changes in weather and the Lonato track saw a wide range of grip situations that made the drivers and their mechanics understandably nervous.
KZ2: GUSTAVSSON TAKES OVER IMMEDIATELY
Qualifying Practice for the FIA Karting International Super Cup – KZ2 was highly variable. None of the four groups benefited from the same conditions as the others. The Vega rain tyres were sometimes replaced by their slick counterparts with more or less success.
The best lap by Matej Kacovsky (CZE) – 58”461 – in the first session was a surprise for many observers, especially as he was ahead of Valentino Fritsch (DEU), Matteo Zanchi (ITA) and especially Alexander Schmitz (DEU). Benjamin Tornqvist (SWE) was the fastest in Session 2 with a time of 56.367 seconds and was more than two-tenths of a second faster than his pursuers, starting with Lorenzo Giannoni (ITA). Giuseppe Palomba (ITA), one of the favourites, finished third and the Luyet brothers (CHE), Jean and Samuel, together in fourth and fifth positions.
Reigning European Champion Viktor Gustavsson (SWE) took full advantage of the circuit’s increasing grip in Session 3 to take pole position – 53”419 – relegating his rivals by more than four tenths. On slick tyres under a few drops of rain, Arthur Carbonnel (FRA) was the fastest in the fourth session with a lap of 58”547, followed by Alessandro Buran (ITA).
Charles Leclerc was present to congratulate the poleman, who was running on a chassis bearing his colours. Gustavsson commented: “The Free Practice had shown that my equipment performed well in both wet and dry conditions, but the conditions were still quite stressful. Pole position is always a good thing in a competition like this.”
BELGIAN POLE POSITION FOR BRAEKEN IN ACADEMY
Like the other drivers at Lonato, those in the FIA Karting Academy Trophy had to deal with the rain during their Qualifying Practice. However, the track was drying out during Session 1, while it regained moisture due to a rain shower for Session 2.
Tom Braeken (BEL) finished on 1’01”600 in the very last moments of Session 1, 0.138” ahead of Oscar Wurz (AUT). Gianni Andrisani (DEU) was third, Alexander Gubenko (RUS) fourth at nearly four tenths off the leader and Ivan Domingues (POR) fifth.
Trophy leader Connor Zilisch (USA) finished at the top of the second session with 1’03”711, more than two seconds from pole position, as rain made one of its many appearances. Only Macéo Capietto (FRA) was able to keep up the pace 63 thousandths from the American. In third position, Keanu Al Azhari (ARE) was six tenths further back.
Braeken was very pleased with his second pole of the season: “I’m very happy with this second pole of the season because I didn’t really expect it. I love this track and we really made the right technical choices for the difficult conditions.”
KREMERS ALREADY IN THE LEAD IN KZ
Divided into two sessions for their Qualifying Practice, the 33 participants of the FIA Karting World Championship – KZ had to face a wet track which nevertheless improved very slightly over the laps. Reigning World Champion Marijn Kremers (NLD) took pole position in the final metres of the second session. Was this a sign?
In the rain, Luca Corberi (ITA) set the fastest time of the first KZ session with 1’00”822. Jeremy Iglesias (FRA) came close by 52 thousandths, while Jorrit Pex (NLD) was third by 0.127″. Marijn Kremers (NLD) took pole position in the final run with a time of 1’00”496, one tenth ahead of Stan Pex (NLD). A third Dutchman, Bas Lammers, completed the top three four-tenths further down the field.
Kremers commented: “We had worked hard yesterday to be fast in the dry. The team had to adapt everything today and they adapted superbly. I immediately understood that I had the best chance of setting my fastest lap at the end of the session. I was careful to cross the line just before the chequered flag and I gave it my all on my last lap!”