Teams G3Pro spooked out at Whilton
Teams G3Pro and Farécla returned to Whilton Mill for Round 9 hoping for a better result than the teams’ previous four visits which all ended with some form of drama.
Greeted by sunshine, the drivers went out in practice hoping to get on the pace quickly but this wasn’t to be. Barry noticed immediately there were issues with the brakes not performing and some overall performance issues but unfortunately the team didn’t have time to make any adjustments before the qualifying session. Both drivers were correct in thinking they had issues, ending the qualifying session dead last.
With the qualifying session over, Barry headed straight into pit road and switched karts for the first time this season. Whilst still not perfect, the new vehicle was a big improvement and the team thought they had enough to move forward literally and figuratively.
The start of the race was a little easier than normal being at the back, and with the hectic nature of a race start places were up for grabs at least. Barry said: “It’s been a while since I started at the back of the grid and I know how dangerous it can be. I had to be composed with my driving style and not make any rash maneuvers. I think I gained around eight places before the first round of pit stops so I was happy with that.”
Next out in on track was Matt. He said: “We were in 20th place by the time I got out on track and I knew it was going to be difficult to move forward. The teams in front were all very experienced and would be on the pace but with that said, I knew that me and Barry had ability to progress.”
Over the 157-lap race, the Team G3Pro drivers drove well up until both of their last stints: Barry span out for only the second time this season and quickly followed it up with another which put the team back toward the blunt end of the field. Matt then followed this up with a disastrous crash of his own. Matt said: “I’ve been racing for 20 years and I’d like to think I’m a clean racer having not put any person/team out of a race. However I found myself making another error for the second race in a row. Looking back I know things will happen out on track in a fraction of a second and by then you have to live with what ever decision you’ve made.
“I unfortunately made a bad judgment call whilst overtaking a back marker which ended with me locking up and taking out a competitor who was only a few laps from taking second place and a podium finish! I know all too well how this feels and I was totally gutted after the race.
“Thankfully the team I crashed into were all great sports after the race and took it in their stride – all I can do is learn from my mistake and move on and avoid a repeat at Ellough Park.”
Meanwhile over at Team Farécla, driver Stewart was taking a well-earned break in sunny Spain so the faltering G3Pro drivers joined Craig. Yay for Craig…
During qualifying, Craig quickly got into the groove around the 1.5km circuit, but with an underperforming kart he was only able to qualify in 20th from 28 teams. Craig said: “Driving into the pits I knew we needed some adjustments but I wasn’t expecting to be that far down the order. With the adjustments made, we discussed how best to make our way forward at the start.”
Barry added: “The race start was most entertaining and both myself and Craig watched on as Matt cut through the field. I think Matt was out to prove a point after the disastrous morning race and, like me, his pride had taken a massive knock; we were both on a mission to make amends!”
Next up was Barry who moved the team forward even further to the race lead – things were looking promising.
True to form, however, Teams G3Pro and now Farécla’s Whilton Mill jinx once again struck.
A bizarre crash in the pit lane by two rival teams left Craig nowhere to go but to spin out and avoid the carnage. This demoted the team back down to eighth place but fortunately Craig dug deep and managed to salvage a fourth-place finish.
He said: “It was another one of those days – for a moment we were making a comeback after a disastrous qualifying session and found ourselves in the lead but yet again our race was ended by random events on and off track; thankfully that’s the end of Whilton for 2016.”
A Special thanks to Sławek Piskorz for some amazing pictures catching all the drama!
The teams now head to Ellough Park in Suffolk on Saturday and hope for good conditions to make their mark in the races. They really appreciate all of your support so don’t forget to visit the Facebook page and follow them on Twitter!