Jai George took on the six round Victorian Golden Power Series in 2022, which concluded over the weekend! George has been one of the young stars in the Karting Victoria ranks making his rise to the front of the grid and wanted to challenge for the championship!
Jai had 6 race tracks and 24 races across the championship to make his claim for the win! George started his championship back in February at the Goulburn Valley Kart Club. The Barber Master Croydon backed entry started his championship in hot form by putting himself on pole position in qualifying over 2-time state champion and Australian Kart Championship 3rd place getter, Riley Harrison. Jai came home inside the top 3 in all 3 of his heats, setting fastest laps on the way and grabbing good points to start his championship. George battled with Harrison and Jack Jenkins at the front of the field in the final at round 1 and came home in 3rd position and on the podium in an incredibly close finish!
Round 2 of the championship in April was at the Bendigo Kart Club. Jai went from the highest of highs at round 1, qualifying on pole position to an issue at Bendigo where he didn’t set a time which put him out of position 16. George charged through the field across his heat races with 3 top 10 finishes of 8th in heat 1, 6th in heat 2 and 7th in heat 3. The J & A Kart Tuning powered driver was out of the top 10 in the final and charged his way into the top 5 to join the front battle, in a remarkable fight back! George crossed the line in position 4 overall in a damage limitation result for his championship and a result that left him right in the hunt in the points standing.
Jai head up the Hume highway at the end of May for round 3 of the championship at the Albury Wodonga Kart Club. The Bella Building Services backed entry was right in the battle for pole position once again, putting himself on the 2nd row of the grid in 3rd position. George putting in some hot heat races where he was able to grab 3rd in heat 2 and his 1st victories of the championship in heat 1 and 3, which had him off the all-important pole position for the final. Jai led the majority of the final by a comfortable margin but had Boston Gillanders close in on the final few laps to make a race for victory. George held off a last lap attempted overtake to take victory and his 1st round victory of the championship!
George started the 2nd half of the championship at his home track in the Eastern Lions Kart Club. The KSG Fuels Numurkah backed entry did another brilliant job in qualifying to put himself on the front row of the grid, in 2nd position overall. Jai had a tough time in his opening 2 heats with position 6 in heat 1 and incident in heat 2 putting him to the rear of the field in heat 2. George bounced back into the top 5 in heat 3 with 4th position overall and this kept him in the hunt for the final. Jai put in a stellar drive in the final to challenge for victory and be right in the front group. George was able to get to the lead and open up a margin and take his 2nd consecutive round victory to further cement his position near the top of the championship!
The penultimate round of the championship took place at the Rochester Kart Club where the championship was starting to heat up. The Flash Branding Croydon backed entry put in another stellar qualifying session grabbing his 2nd pole position of the championship. Jai was the driver to beat in the 3 heat races with 2nd in heat 1 and victory in heat 2 and 3 which put him off pole position for the round decider. George led the 1st half of the final but had a 3-way fight in the 2nd half of the race with championship rivals Lucas Costanzo and Jack Jenkins. In a frantic finish Jai came away with another podium finish result in 3rd overall and went into the final round of the championship in the box seat.
The final round of the championship took place at the Gippsland Kart Club and George was looking to finish his championship off with victory. The Barber Master Croydon backed entry was able to take his 3rd pole position of the championship. Jai was able to take a stranglehold on the field, taking out all 3 heat wins and having him off pole position for the final with maximum points so far for the round. George was unfortunately shuffled back off the start to the back end of the top 10 but got his head down to charge back towards the top 5. Jai was able to cross the line in 4th spot overall and this was enough to claim the win in the 2022 Golden Power Series in Cadet 12!
George had an incredible championship taking 9 wins out of the 24 races, 16 top 3 finishes of 24 races and 19 top 5 finishes in 24 races. Jai was also able to take out 3 of the 6 pole positions showing he was a deserving champion in the Cadet 12 class!
George will be back in season 2023 to chase back-to-back wins in the premier Victorian championship!