European Championship, Round 2

The fourth edition of the International Handikart Trophy was part of the French round of the European OK and OK Junior championships last weekend. The event also featured the first disabled driver to take part in an FIA European Championship race.

French driver Maxime Leger was the first disabled driver to take part in an FIA Karting European Championship Event, contesting the OK class (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

Australian James Wharton contested the OK class with the Parolin team, but struggled for pace all weekend. James qualified 58th (of 63) and was ranked 38th after heat results of 8, 13, 22, 18 – which meant he narrowly missed the cut to make the final.

James is classified 22nd in the Championship with 2 points from the opening round. There are two rounds to go, in Italy and Spain.

  • full results on the FIA Karting website HERE
  • Finals day video stream below. Scroll down for Saturday’s footage.

from FIA Karting

At the end of an exciting weekend of racing in France, Matheus Ferreira (BRA) in OK-Junior and Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA) in OK were the winners of the Event, giving the FIA Karting European Championship – OK & Junior a very interesting twist.

As noted by CIK-FIA President Felipe Massa, the Races at Aunay-les-Bois were hotly contested between the top specialists, while the entry for the second Event of the season was high despite the still noticeable presence of the pandemic in some countries. This is a very encouraging sign for the rest of the FIA Karting season.

The quality of the French organisation was again greatly appreciated, a point to the credit of the K61 team and its president Claude Gripon. The technical difficulties of the Aunay-les-Bois track made a drastic selection among the participants and the few incidents that occurred during the weekend were often caused by a poor appreciation of its unique points. The MG Tires slicks fulfilled their mission perfectly during a Competition that was run entirely in the dry.

Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA), Winner of the OK Final (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

As the mid-season mark has just been passed, the hierarchy is being established in the provisional standings with two new winners in a wide open title hunt. The next meeting will take place in Italy on the Sarno track in six weeks time, before the conclusion at the end of July in Spain at Zuera.  

The last Qualifying Heats on Sunday morning saw the intensity of the confrontations go up a notch, particularly in the Junior category where several spins played a significant role in the results. The excitement of the young Drivers as the Final Phase approached sometimes caused them to lose their lucidity.

JUNIOR: SLATER PENALISED, FERREIRA WINS

Freddie Slater (GBR-Kosmic/Vortex/MG) added another win in his fourth heat, while Alex Powell (JAM-KR/IAME/MG) and Kean Nakamura Berta (GBR-Exprit/TM Racing/MG) won the other two heats.

Freddie Slater, fastest qualifier in OK Junior (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

After a well-controlled race, Slater crossed the finish line more than eight tenths ahead, but was given a 10″ penalty for not respecting the rules when the race was restarted after the ‘slow’ procedure during the first three laps. Kirill Kutskov (RUS-KR/IAME/MG) had been in second place for a long time, but his KR Motorsport team-mate Matheus Ferreira (BRA-KR/IAME/MG) overtook him on the way to the finish and became the official winner of the Final. Tomass Stolcermanis (LVA-Energy/TM Racing/MG) found himself in third place after a convincing performance throughout the weekend. Maksmilian Popov (RUS-Tony Kart/Vortex/MG) and Alex Powell made up the top five.



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Matheus Ferreira (BRA), Winner of the Junior Final (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

Provisional FIA Karting European Championship – Junior standings after the second round at Aunay-les-Bois:
1- Freddie Slater (GBR) – 50 points
2- Matheus Ferreira (BRA) – 37 points
3- Ean Eyckmans (BEL) – 35 points
4- Alex Powell (JAM) – 35 points
5- Kirill Kutskov (RUS) – 28 points

OK: ANTONELLI WINS, CAMARA CONSOLIDATES HIS LEAD IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP

Winner of all four heats, Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA-KR/IAME/MG) was ahead of Artem Severiukhin (RUS-Tony Kart/Vortex/MG) and Rafael Camara (BRA-KR/IAME/MG) on the starting grid for the Final. Antonelli progressively broke away from Camara and took an impressive victory with a lead of more than 4,5”. It was another KR Motorsport Driver, Arvid Lindblad (GBR-KR/IAME/MG), who caused a sensation by moving up from 8th to 3rd place in the Brazilian’s wheel tracks, setting the fastest lap of the race. Artem Severiukhin had to be satisfied with fourth position whereas Yannick De Brabander (BEL-Praga/IAME/MG) at 30 years old achieved a remarkable performance in the top five for his return to high level racing that had started in Genk. Evan Giltaire (FRA-KR/IAME/MG) lost some ground, but finished in a convincing 8th position as top French Driver.

Rafael Camara (BRA), 2nd in the OK Final (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

The exemplary performance of Maxime Léger (FRA-Kosmic/Vortex/MG) caught everyone’s attention: it was the first time that a disabled driver has taken part in an FIA Karting European Championship Event. Maxime completed a courageous challenge by finishing 52nd in the OK Qualifying Heats after setting the 60th time in Practice.

Provisional FIA Karting European Championship – Junior standings after the second round at Aunay-les-Bois:
1- Rafael Camara (BRA) – 62 points
2- Arvid Lindblad (GBR) – 49 points
3- Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA) – 32 points
4- Artem Severiukhin (RUS) – 29 points
5- Juho Valtanen (FIN) – 23 points

OK podium (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

VICTORY FOR LAVAUX IN THE INTERNATIONAL HANDIKART TROPHY

Organised by the K61 club under the aegis of the French ASN FFSA, the fourth edition of the International Handikart Trophy was very well integrated into the FIA Karting Competition. The CIK-FIA President handed out their medals to the 13 participants on the starting grid of the Final. Morgan Lavaux (FRA-Sodi/Rotax-H1) dominated the Qualifying Heats and the Prefinal before winning the Final. Joan Lascorz-Moreno (ESP-CRG/Iame-H3) was a formidable opponent, but was disqualified from the Final due to insufficient weight following a water leak. Mickaël Vaché (FRA-Sodi/Rotax-H2) took second place ahead of Alain Nicolle (FRA-Sodi/Rotax-H2).

This was the fourth edition of the International Handikart Trophy (pic – FIA Karting/KSP)

FIA Karting shares the sadness of the motorbike racing world after the death of the young Swiss hopeful Jason Dupasquier as a result of his injuries during the Qualifying session of the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello. Jason was a 19 year old MOTO 3 rider.

The results of the Aunay-les-Bois race can be viewed on the official FIA Karting Championship app for mobile devices and on the website www.fiakarting.com.


Saturday’s report

Unlike the previous event in Belgium, the twenty Qualifying Heats of the second round of the 2021 FIA Karting European Championship – OK and Junior were not disrupted by rain, even though there was a threat not far from the international circuit of Aunay-les-Bois. British Junior Freddie Slater had a perfect run as did Italian Andrea Kimi Antonelli in OK. They are the two favourites before the final heats on Sunday morning.

The MG Tires slicks were put to the test on a completely dry track all day. Managing the wear of the six tyres allowed for this Qualifying Phase was one of the factors to be taken into account in order to achieve the regular performance required by this challenge. The other important criterion concerned the technical specificities of the Aunay-les-Bois track. The start phase is crucial with a first corner that is sometimes difficult to negotiate for the Drivers starting from the outside line. A few small collisions occurred, while several participants lost ground in this part. On the other hand, overtaking required a certain amount of bravery, or at least a good understanding of the situation, to succeed. This is something that should never be overlooked in Normandy.   

The races went well overall, despite increasing tension in the last two in OK and the standard of the sporting confrontations of the day was very high. The provisional ranking on Saturday evening largely confirmed the hierarchy of the Qualifying Practice. Five Qualifying Heats remain to be run on Sunday morning before the finalists are revealed, three in Junior and two in OK, where Group E has already completed its programme.

SLATER CONFIRMS IN JUNIOR

Freddie Slater (GBR), who took pole position in the Qualifying Practice, won all four of his Qualifying Heats. To be able to beat him is the goal of all his rivals, but the task is certainly not easy. His direct pursuers were rewarded for their consistency. Tomass Stolcermanis (LVA) was able to stay in touch despite only one victory. The top group close to first place also included Kirill Kustov (RUS) and Alex Powell (JAM). Not much further back, Matheus Ferreira (BRA), William Macintyre (GBR), Luka Sammalisto (FIN) and Maxim Rehm (DEU) were in a favourable situation. Arthur Poulain was the leading French Driver.

OK: ANTONELLI TAKES THE LEAD

The 2020 FIA European Karting – OK Champion Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA) took the lead in the provisional standings of the Aunay-les-Bois rounds thanks to three very convincing wins. Artem Severiukhin (RUS) confirmed his potential with two wins and a second place, while poleman Rafael Camara (BRA) remained in the leading pack with two wins and one sixth place. The consistent performances of veteran Yannick De Brabander (BEL) allowed him to get back in contact with the leaders, while hopeful Ugo Ugochukwu (USA) made a good progression from the timed sessions. Evan Giltaire (FRA) remained in a good position as the best representative of the host country.



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