Mathew Basso made his return to the Victorian Country Series last weekend for his first start in the series as a junior! Basso who was a regular front runner in the series last season has made the move to the Melbourne Kart Centre stable over the off season, jumping aboard an EOS chassis!
Mathew took wins and podiums at multiple events last season and was looking to kick off his Country Series Championship in similar fashion. Saturday afternoon qualifying was where the young driver’s series started and it was difficult before even heading out the gate. With a misty drying track Mathew had to make the decision to head out on wet tyres or slicks. Basso made the right call and was straight in the battle for pole position with multiple time state champion James Anagnostiadis. The EOS kart was working well and Mathew was getting the most out of his driving and the kart. In an emphatic start to the weekend, Basso put his kart on pole position!
Heat one Sunday morning was the racing start point for Basso, with things going wrong before even leaving the gate. Mathew’s kart wouldn’t fire on the first roll up lap and once started Basso joined the field. With no time to go through his warmup procedure, Basso thundered down to turn one and ended up off the circuit. Rejoining at the rear of the field a long way back, the young driver had to dig deep. In a storming charge back up the field, Mathew made his way back into the top ten. Basso continued to make his way forward and finished in position seven being one of the fastest karts on the track!
Basso now started in the middle of the pack due to his heat one result. Mathew got a great start moving straight into the top five and looked to be moving forward. Just when you thought things had turned, the young driver came across a sliding kart and ran off the circuit onto the wet grass. Due to the wet grass, Mathew was stuck and had a DNF result in heat two.
With a positive mindset, the team tuned the kart up for the final with Basso determined to make his way through the field. Mathew started off the rear of the grid and was trying to make up as many spots as possible. Basso got a great start putting himself inside the top five! In a breath-taking opening few laps, Mathew had made his way up into second position with race leader Anagnostiadis down the road. Basso threw everything in his arsenal to try and close in on the race leader but came home in an incredible second spot and on the podium!
Mathew’s father Paul told us post-race of his son’s highs and lows! “WOW, what a day. Talk about highs and lows. Qualifying in P1 was definitely a highlight but it all seemed to go downhill from there. In fact, it wasn’t until the final that we were able to actually make it past turn 1 which sounds crazy. Mathew drove well and did what he needed to do while keeping the weekend fun even when we had those 2 bad heat races”.
Mathew was happy with his first trophy in juniors after a tough weekend. “Yer, the weekend started off so well and then those 2 heat races were just terrible. I was able to pull it all together for the final and walk away with my fist ever KA4 Junior Light Trophy so I am stoked. I would like to thank all my partners and supporters for everything they do. Thanks to: The whole Team at Melbourne Kart Centre, Castrol Racing, UNIT Clothing, Oakley Sunglasses, Atlas Neck Braces, Mayhem Tools, Spark Plugs Direct, Raceline Racewear, PREPD Hydration, Secure Max and Co, San Remo Pasta, Bakers Delight, 808 Dude and MotiV8 Training for all their support”.