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Another heat win in the wet but luck deserts Sam at Rissy

November 15, 2010

Wets were the choice for heat 1

After heavy rain overnight the clouds had parted and race day appeared to be drying by the time heat one arrived. In a worst possible scenario Sam discovered he was drawn in pole for the first heat and we took our place on the dummy grid watching the track surface drying as other classes had their heats. Despite one or two brave competitiors opting for a quick tyre change to slicks, we held our nerve and went out with grooved wet tyres.

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Sam takes the flag by a country mile

From Sams’ point of view the race was straight forward. Maintaining his first position through turn 1, Sam got his head down and put some consistent laps in to pull out a healthy lead. Our combination of setup and tyres clearly successful. This time there were no mistakes and by the end of the race, Sam’s lead was probably 10 seconds or so [the computer timing system was not working this weekend] and he brought it home for an emphatic victory.

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Heat 2 did not go quite as well. Now on a full dry setup and slick tyres Sam started from P13 behind 2 inexperienced drivers. Their nervousness at the rolling start put Sam at a disadvantage as they held back from the rest of the pack over the start line.

I tried pushing the guy infront of me in the run up to the start line to get him to close the gap and let him know he needed to move up, but he actually braked to maintain the gap! It was so frustrating.”

 

Seconds before diaster ...

Worse was yet to come. Half way around turn one and a spinning kart in front caused chaos. Sam tried to avoid the carnage but took impacts at the front and the side of his Tony kart. He could be seen bouncing in his seat to keep the engine running as set off after the pack.

I knew something was wrong and looked around to see the side impact had caused a puncture at the rear.”

In fact, Sams wheel had been broken by the impact causing the tyre to deflate so he had no option but to retire.

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On the apex in heat 3

We needed better luck in heat 3. Starting at the back in P23 Sam made good progress through the pack following Matt England through where he could. A finish of P9 was on the cards but then on the last lap, Sam inexplicably took to the grass.

“I’m not really sure what happened, whether I understeered off or if I was helped, but I lost 2 places in the process. Not happy

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So a P11 finish was still good enough to qualify Sam in P8 for the final despite a DNF and a disappointed 3rd heat. A good result was still possible from here.

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Sam and Jack R

The Junior TKM final was to be the last race of the day and as we stood on the dummy grid the clouds were threatening. As it happened, the wheel guns were not required but rain was not the real threat – light was fading fast. As we pushed the boys off onto the rolling lap the light was bad, not helped by the tinted visors most of the driver use. Worse still, a red flag on lap 2 introduced further delay and by the time we restarted it was well and truely dark!

“I had the wrong visor on my helmet so I really couldnt see much at all. I was not too disappointed when race was shortened to 6 laps”.

 

The Final was held in the dark!

Sam was up to P6 by half way but was hindered slightly as he entered the dog leg behind Will Shaw. Will spun in front of Sam who had to take avoiding action. He chose to go to the right to avoid the accident, but Will’s kart kept rolling backwards making Sams detour even longer and losing 2 places to the lucky ones who had more time to react and took the shorter route.

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So after a shortened race, 8th place was the final result. A bit of an anti-climax if we are honest and we came away disappointed.

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No results pages available this month due to a computer glitch at Rissington.

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This was the last race of the Rissington season. Championship position to be published shortly.

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Next event – and last one of the year – Kimbolton next week.

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