Ashton Ardley returned to the karting circuit over the weekend taking to the AKC Shakedown event at the Eastern Lions Kart Club.
Ardley has a big five to six weeks on the karting front continuing his assault on the Victorian Golden Power Series. Ashton will also take to his first ever national event at the fourth round of the Australian Kart Championship at the Eastern Lions circuit.
Qualifying was the starting point for Ardley under wet conditions against some high caliber state champions and state podium place getters. The Pro Karting powered driver showed supreme skill and kart controller in the tough conditions, running in the top five and looking to be a great chance for pole position. Ashton in one of his best showings this season, put his Formula K entry on pole position for the opening heats.
Ardley looked to get a clean start in heat one. Ashton was able to leave the opening lap in first position and led every lap in the heat to turn pole position into a heat one victory in another wet weather master class.
Heat two changed the weekend for young Ashton with the track going back to dry conditions and slick tyres going back on the kart. The team unfortunately didn’t have a new set of tyres for Ashton and tyre management was going to be an issue in the dry. Starting out of pole position the Pro Karting powered driver did the best he could but dropped back outside the top five. Ardley fought on to come home in position seven overall.
Ashton was out of position three for the third heat but once again struggled for grip off the start. In some great driving with the circumstances the Formula K karter came home again in position seven, looking to the final to grab more good points.
Ardley again got a clean get away and battled on the edge of the top five throughout the race showing improved lap times from his earlier dry heats. In another strong driver showing, Ashton was able to come home in position seven overall in a great consistent effort.
Ashton’s father Josh spoke of the excitement of the wet weather results and the disappointment of the dry races. “I am very happy with Ashton’s performance in qualifying and Heat 1, and disappointed for him that tyre management cost him a podium. The kart and engine performed flawlessly this weekend, so I’d like to give thanks to ProKarting for their ongoing support”.
Ashton also spoke of his lack of tyre grip in the dry races. “Overall, I am happy with the performance of the kart and the engine, I just didn’t have the best luck with my tyres”.
Ardley will now look to his Golden Power Series and Australian Kart Championship assignments.