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Pipped at the post – Rissington October club meeting

October 7, 2010

The job was done. Sam won his first heat in the wet, then finished 2nd and 4th, qualified in pole, posted fastest lap of the day, and led the final right up until the last 2 corners. What could possible go wrong?

Its only practice! The boys swapped places all day - great to watch

Saturday at Rissy was a warm and dry day which did nothing to prepare us for the downpour on race day. However, the practice sessions were great fun as the boys raced closely together, session after session, and never once looked like taking each other off.

For Sunday the gloves were off and the heavens opened. Before breakfast the kart was converted to a wet setup and talk was of the event being cancelled such was the downpour. We even took in refugees when their awning collapsed in the wind! Oh today was going to be an endurance ….

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Our boy takes the flag in heat 1

Heat 1 was very wet. Sam was drawn in P7 on the inside line and fell into place after the first corner in his starting position. By the end of lap 1 Sam had already made his way up to P3 behind Aaron Mills and Jack Hughes. Hughes dropped back and Sam chased Aaron Mills at the front for most of the race. On the penultimate lap Liam Jones appeared from nowhere and dived down the inside of both Sam and Aaron, three abreast down the back straight!

It was a bit hairy going around Bottom Bend still side by side and I was in the middle. Liam took the advantage and I was able to hold second coming out of the corner. The next corner was the Elbow so I just held the inside and squeezed him out through the exit.

Sam held first place and took a well deserved victory.

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Jack leading heat 2, Sam and Gavin fighting for second

Heat 2 and the conditions were such that full wets were still the easy choice.  Sam was drawn in P6 and made an equally good start, up to third by the end of lap 1 behind leaders Jack Ransom and Gavin Pitt. Having both cleared Jack, Sam was on the back of regular front runner Gavin Pitt and looked threatening, but as they came to lap backmarker into the elbow he ran off the track. Gavin was able to get through but as Sam came out of the Elbow he reappeared straight on the racing line.

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“I was lucky to miss him but it screwed up my chance of challenging Gavin”.

Sam made up some ground but  ran out of laps and finished second. A good result nevertheless.

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Pole! There had to be a picture!

There was no let up between heats and we were soon back on the grid for heat 3, again in wet setup. Starting at the back in 15th Sam was one of the quickest out there, second only to Gavin. Ultimately we ran out of laps but not before making up 12 places to finish 4th.

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Missing heat 4 meant we had a considerable wait before the final, and before discovering Sam had qualified in pole position – result!

By the time the final arrived, there was a clear dry line and all races were now on slicks, but large clouds threatened and most Dads had become instant weather experts predicting a variety of outcomes. We played safe and selected a semi-dry setup and took the wheel gun to the grid!

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Final

Sam and Gavin locked together at the beginning of the final

The final was quite uneventful for Sam until the last lap. It’s a lot safer at the front! Sam had a good start and held first position through turn 1. Sam and Gavin broke away at the front and both put in some consistently quick times. We were visibly quicker out of the dog-leg which gave Sam a slight cushion each lap so Gavin had to work hard to make it up. Initially Gavin was threatening, but by the half way mark Sam had worn him down (and our tyres came on) and we pulled a few kart lengths out and looked to be in a relatively safe position.

The battle was just as close behind

As the leaders caught up with the backmarkers, Sam and Gavin both made clean and decisive passes, until with some relief Sam approached the ‘last lap’ board. But at that point lost considerable time getting past a backmarker.

I couldn’t predict where he was going to go, so I stuck to inside to overtake the novice as I didn’t know where Gavin was behind me. But I lost a lot of time in the process.”

Sam was still in front. He held the lead through the inner loop, kept the advantage through Top Bend, kept it on the tarmac braking into the dog-leg. Sam increased the gap pulling out of the dog-leg into Bottom Bend through to approach the Elbow. By this time the photographer was setting the camera ready for the ‘victory shot’.

Calm before the storm, Sam takes the last lap board with some margin of comfort

As I approached the Elbow I knew Gavin was close so I took a defensive line. That slowed me considerably into and out of the corner. Gavin threw it around my outside with a couple of wheels on the run off area. That gave him the inside for the final bend. Before I could do much about it he was there, I knew by then I’d lost it. Gutted.”

Sam took the flag 0.1 seconds behind a victorious Gavin.

In parc ferme Sam and Dad didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. 2nd was a great result, and Sam will learn from that heartbreaking experience.

Well done to Gavin for a great race and for taking his opportuntiy, and to Sam’s pal Matt in third.

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Sam and Matt on the podium together

Full results click here.

Next race weekend Kimbolton Oct 9/10.

 

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One Comment leave one →
  1. M & L Randon permalink
    October 9, 2010 6:31 pm

    So proud of you Sam, you had a wonderful days racing. Gramps will be pleased to read all about it – with photos.

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