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Eight Moore Racing Drivers prepare for the Super 4 Championship

Sam Moore started karting as a child in 1994, 23 years later he has just started his own team alongside his younger brother, Tom Moore. The Moore brothers will be taking their eight KZ2 drivers around the UK to take part in the Super 4 Championship in 2017. We caught up with Sam before the first round of Super 4 at Fulbeck which took place last weekend, to find out his full karting history and where he sees their team going over the coming years.

Tell us a bit more about your karting career so far?

“I always loved motorsport as a young child. Then Dad turned up one night with an Allkart Cadet kart on the roof rack of his van! We went to a dis-used road and spent time getting used to the kart for a month. We then went to a novice practice day at Rowrah in 1994 and the rest is pretty much history!”

“I did cadets for 4 years, then moved into Junior TKM in 1999.  After that I went into Junior Gearbox in 2000 and into 125 open (KZ1) as it was then in 2002/03.”

“We were competitive in cadets, I won a round of Champions of the Future at Rye House in 1998. In Junior TKM we were again competitive but didn’t do Super One. I was a front runner in Junior Gearbox and worked my way up to the top in seniors (gearbox).” 

The Moore Brothers in 2006

“I stopped karting in 2011 as I wasn’t completely enjoying racing to be honest, I tended to put too much pressure on myself to win which took the fun out of it. I came back for fun in 2014 and competed in Super 4 which I throughly enjoyed. I loved racing with a change of attitude and I loved helping drivers who are now big names such as Henry Easthope, Dan Kelly and Sam Webster. In 2014 I also won the Gearbox Grand Prix which took place at Fulbeck and took the GP plate which was an incredible feeling!”

Sam Moore
Sam Moore

“Now I am getting a buzz from running a team with Tom and been able to help drivers improve their performances and driving.”

Tom didn’t do as much karting as Sam, but attended most meetings with the family. His attention turned to the mechanic and engineering side of the sport. Both of the Moore brothers raced for Andy Fairless Racing for 20 years!

Tom Moore
Tom Moore

“Growing up watching Andy Fairless Racing build as a front running karting team I knew from a small age that if I ever got a chance in my life to have my own team then I would give 100%. I spent many hours at Andy Fairless’s workshop learning how karts were best prepared and maintained. With my current job being a maintenance engineer and serving 12 years in that job I have learnt my craft and have a great background to progress with a race team.” – Tom Moore

Moore Racing officially started at the second Round of Super 4/NFK last year. “We always enjoyed helping and developing drivers in the past. This was an opportunity we felt we had to take”. They have come a long way to now having 8 drivers signed up to their team all ready to try and get the best results in Super 4 this year!

Moore Racing drivers for 2017

Adam Rusling (11th at round one)
Chad Shiner (4th at round one)
Greg Dickens (16th at round one)
Matt Sherwen (5th at round one)
Miles Murphy (3rd on the grid at round one)
Paul Sleight (14th at round one)
Pete Britcliffe  (5th on the grid at round one)
Shane Daly (6th on the grid at round one)

“Our expectations for this year are very simple, everyone tries their very best! To improve their basic skills and techniques. As a team we don’t have expectations as such, we just hope that the work which has been done and work to be done in the future stands all our drivers in good stead. In terms of numbers we hope to get as many as we can in to the top 10.” Sam Moore

Miles Murphy
Miles Murphy

“So far our pre-season testing has gone very well, we had a few hiccups with a couple of new members but we were soon back on track at the Shenington winter series. Its going to be very hard to finish in the top 10 this year however my outright aim is to win the championship. If we can secure a couple of winning rounds and get at least 2 of our drivers in the top 5 and 4 drivers in the top ten then we have done extremely well. We hope to bring the two older driver in our team somewhere close too if not a top 10 finish in at least one round.” Tom Moore

Sam has experience at every single track on the Super 4 calendar this year and not just in terms of having driven at every track, he has actually won at every single track!

2017 Super 4 calendar:

Round 1 – 25th/26th March, Fulbeck
Round 2 – 16th April, GYG
Round 3 – 13th/14th May, Kimbolton
Round 4 – 11th June, Rowrah
Round 5 – 15th/16th July, Shenington
Round 6 – 6th August, Forest Edge
Round 7 – 7th/8th October, Kimbolton

“My favourite track on the calendar has to be Rowrah! The amount of laps and time spent at Rowrah gave me the basic platform to be able to achieve as much as I have done.”

The championship Moore racing would enter this year was always going to have to be between Super 4 and Super One. There was 31 KZ entries in Super 4 last year, compared to just nine in Super One “The Super 4 championship is massively underrated, yet I believe it is the best in this country for KZ. To me Super 4 was the championship to win.”

Chad Shiner
Chad Shiner

Looking ahead to the next few years Sam seems very positive on the teams progression.

Honestly, as a team, just to be as successful as possible, wherever that takes us. Maybe venture outside of the KZ class as we do have young lads of our own who are keen and interested in karting. Personally my goal is to be able to develop every driver who drives for Moore Racing to become the very best they can.”

One of Moore Racing Drivers, Shane Daly (IRL), raced with the team at the ABKC O-plate at Rowrah earlier this month. He drove fantastically well all weekend. He qualified on pole, won both heats, and the Pre-Final! Sadly an incident in the final meant he missed out on the O-plate, but I watched Shane’s performance and his talent was unmissable. I’d be surprised if he doesn’t make multiple podium appearances this year.

Shane has a great history in the sport and has mainly raced in the Rotax classes in recent years. He’s competed in both the Super One and Irish National Championships, he’s raced in the Rotax Euro Challenge too and has made two appearances at the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals representing Ireland. In 2012 Shane was 33rd and in 2015 he was an impressive 12th place! Ahead of the season he commented:

“I was quite new to KZ Karting when I joined Moore racing but both Sam and Tom have helped accelerate my progress immensely! It is a credit to the boys how fast the team has grown and I can not wait to get the 2017 championship underway.”Shane Daly

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The first round of Super 4 took place this weekend at Fulbeck. All 8 drivers learnt something and everyone took a positive away from the weekend. Unfortunately the final didn’t go to plan for a few drivers, however Chad Shiner took 4th and Matt Sherwen 5th.

“Overall we have had a brilliant weekend. Not every result gone our way but Moore Racing isn’t going anywhere!! We are learning fast but not as fast as our competitors are learning about us!Sam Moore 

“Team, team manager, brother, partnership, new drivers, old drivers, new friends, old friends, determination, dedication, sleepless nights, late nights into early mornings, two jobs, passion, precision, preparation, new beginnings, challenges, stress, money worries, short time frame, AFR –  all there help past and present, winter testing, no family time, bad times, good times, blood, sweat, tears. Highlight of the weekend watching Peter Britcliffe lift his visor after taking 3rd in a heat and seeing him cry. Chuffed and emotional times. Finally my childhood dream come true this weekend and I loved every minute of it. Thanks everyone” – Tom Moore

We wish the team the best of luck for 2017!

Sam’s 5-1

5 words to describe yourself?

  • Honest
  • Approachable
  • Grounded
  • Enthusiastic
  • Happy

4  favourite tracks?

  • Rowrah
  • Kimbolton
  • Forest Edge
  • Little Rissington

3 drivers that have inspired you?

  • Jenson Button
  • Alex Zanardi
  • Mark Walker

2 memorable moments in your career?

  • 2008 Super 4 champion
  • 2010, Super 4, round 1 – at forest edge. 19th on grid for final and went onto win by 2 seconds on 10 laps.

1 goal for the future?

  • To be as successful as Andy Fairless Racing with Moore Racing.

 

Written by Bethanie Lawson

Images courtesy of Bethanie Lawson Photography

 

Like this article? Then check out all our other race reports here:

Mark Baines Motorsport – The fastest growing team in British karting

KZ Onboard – Winter Cup 2016 – Lonato

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Interviews on the new GPK Series

Hear the thoughts of team managers, Mike Spencer (Global Karting) and Ashlee Whiteman (Wavertree Motorsport) on the launch of the new GPK Series this week.

Both Mike and Ashlee give their thoughts on the series as a whole and how they thing it will do this year. Also included in the interview is Karting magazine Editor Chris McCarthy who was also at the launch.

You can also hear from Daytona Motorsport CEO, Charles Graham below who talks about the GPK Series, FKS and how to win the championship.

 

Click here to read about the full launch of the new GPK Series

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Tom Canning: My 5 best karting memories

Tom Canning recently announced that he will be moving up to the Ginetta Junior Championship for 2017 with Douglas Motorsport. Tom has had a fantastic karting career, he was a British Champion and is known as one of the most consistent drivers in the junior classes in recent years. He’s not been blessed with the best of luck at times, but when things have come together for him the results have left memories he’ll always remember.

We spoke to Tom before the start of the Ginetta Junior Championship to find out his 5 best karting memories

 Tom Canning Rotax Winter Cup 2015
Tom Canning Rotax Winter Cup 2015

5. My first ever novice trophy

Tom started karting back in 2010 and did some racing in the Dunkeswell Kart Club Championship. Tom competed in the 2010 South West Championship where he picked up the novice trophy. In a field of 20 Libre Cadets Tom came through from 17th to 12th in the final in wet conditions to win the novice trophy. It was his best result as a novice and showed the quick improvements he was already making.

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4. My first championship win

Tom Canning’s first championship came in the shape of the Clay Pigeon Kart Club Championship back in 2012. Tom described it as “such a great year! It was very memorable and meant so much to me! It almost meant as much as my strongest results since!” Anyone that’s won a championship whether it be club, national or European will know how the journey on route to that title and feeling when you win it is something that is hard to forget.

tom-canning-clay-pigeon-kart-club

3. Winning the 2014 Honda Cadet Super One British Championship

Who would have known, but the win in 2012 was just a dress rehearsal to winning the British title in 2014 in what was a hugely dramatic last race! Tom had finished 7th in the 2013 championship and heading into the last race of the 2014 season it was Kiern Jewiss’ title to lose, but as he went backwards Tom was on a charge through from 11th on the grid to win it by just a handful of points. When speaking to Tom about it he commented: “My team, BRK and I, won the championship after a hard battle all year. It all came down to the last race. It was my first British Championship and winning it was an indescribable feeling.”

Watch back the series finale below

2. Debut European Podium at Rotax Winter Cup 2015

It may have been Tom’s first time racing outside of the UK and first time racing in the Junior Rotax class, but he drove like an absolute veteran as he took a podium in a packed field of Junior drivers. Tom had qualified in 6th place and worked his way through to get as high as 2nd before dropping back to 3rd. Come the last lap Tom was fighting for the lead with his Dan Holland Racing teammate, Tom Gamble and Jack McCarthy. On this occasion Tom had to settle for a podium, but considering he had just come out of Cadets, it was a hugely impressive result.

Watch the race back below

1. The friends made in the sport

“I have made great friends while racing in karting from all around the UK and Europe. I still hope to race in a kart from time to time with KR Sport, so will be able to keep in touch and will watch everyone’s progress through the year.” As much as we all do take it seriously, it’s great to hear Tom will enjoy the memories he had with the friends he made in the sport above everything else. As he moves into cars he will certainly see some familiar faces, but also meet some new ones too.

tom-canning-bnl-2016

Tom has had a very impressive karting career. Post 2015 Winter Cup, Tom went on to finish 3rd in the Mini Max Super One Series in 2016 and 3rd in the BNL Karting Series just missing out on a ticket to the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals. He also enjoyed more success in the Rotax Winter Cup with 2nd in 2016 and some impressive showings in the OK Junior class last year in Super One. One of the races I’ll always remember from Tom was when we drove from 25th (and last) to 4th in Kartmasters last year to finish just 1.23 seconds behind the winner setting the fastest lap along the way!

However, Tom will now move up to Ginetta Junior’s to race on the British Touring Car Championship (TOCA) package. It’s certainly the lead Junior car series and there will be many karters routing for Tom to have a good debut season.

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Like this article? Then check these out:

Olli Caldwell: My 5 best karting memories

Sam Marsh: My 5 best karting memories

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Mark Baines Motorsport – The fastest growing team in British karting

Four years ago Mark Baines was given the chance the start his own race team when he had someone buy him two awnings and a van. He’d ran his son, Jordan, for years but after a lot of convincing Mark took the plunge. Now in 2017 Mark has a total of 30 drivers racing for him and he’s about to turn from a Club race team to a National one with seven drivers entered into Super One. It’s an incredible achievement and something that has changed his life. Here’s his story…

Let’s start from the beginning, many people around the paddock will know Jordan Baines. He is Mark’s son and is the person that started all of this when he jumped in a Cadet at just 5 years old.

“Jordan started karting in Honda cadet at 5 years old, we did non MSA at Warden Law and loads of practicing until he started racing at 8. He raced WTP for 3 years receiving number 15, number 10 and number 8. So after 3 seeded finishes on a pathetically low budget and also 2 SYKC and LKRC championship wins, we then did 2 years Mini Max winning TVKC, SYKC and LKRC all in one year!”

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By this point Jordan was absolutely flying! It’s fair to say he would have been aiming to win Super One, with all those club wins and two consecutive top tens in WTP Cadet it looked likely. But as we all know when you move up classes the budget tends to rise and despite getting off to a great start, unfortunately Jordan had to cut his Super One season short.

“In his second year we were 3rd in Super One but had to pull out because of money, that was around same time the team started and with Jordan growing his racing was on the back seat for a while.”

It’s fair to say Jordan knew what he was doing in the seat, but I had never really heard of him too much until last year. When Jordan went out to Le Mans for the IAME International Final many would have written him off. The team were not experienced enough for it, Jordan had not had enough seat time but when Mark talked me through his results last year I was amazed!

Jordan Baines

“Last year Jordan only raced three times. He was p6 at Rowrah LGM, P12 at Kartmasters from 36th on the grid and 35th out of 140 drivers at the Le Mans for the X30 World Finals. We were very happy with this after a couple of years of not being in the seat!”

Who wouldn’t be happy with that! It had put MBM and Jordan on the World map and things were about to get even bigger for the team, but where did it all start?

Mark decided to start his team after he helped many people whilst his son was racing, he helped with kart set up and driver coaching.

Freddie Spindlow
Freddie Spindlow

“A number of people kept asking to start my own team but I couldn’t afford it and didn’t want the hassle, Mick Batty spent about 6k on a van and two little awnings and said if it works then pay me back if it doesn’t then he’s made a mistake, 4 years on we have 30 drivers on our books and many championship and race wins which I couldn’t be more proud of. Its unbelievable how we have grown, we started with 4 drivers Fraz Fenwick (who as just rejoined ) Joe Ellison (still with us ) Adam Batty and River Hughes.”

It does beg the question why hasn’t the team done Super One already? You’d think it’d be an issue of not having enough drivers to do it or not having the equipment, but Mark obviously had the drivers intentions in mind when he made the decision not to do it last year.

“I didn’t feel ready as a team last year. I wanted to make sure when we entered Super One we, as a team were ready. I don’t have the benefit of customers with bottom pockets who can do loads of testing but they do want to do Super One just for the experience and I think that’s great. I’m happy that as a team when we do the rounds we will be ready.”

MBM

It’s refreshing to hear Mark chose to wait another year. Some people may say you need to do Super One as soon as possible, but with Mark’s previous experience of running on a budget he has been able to prepare them for an extra year so all the drivers can do it properly. As for the calendar, the team have been to most tracks, but they’ll be visiting both Clay Pigeon and Rissington for the first time this year. I’m sure they were happy to see Rowrah and Fulbeck still on the calendar, these are usually two tracks where the team should be particularly strong!

Let’s take a look at the seven driver line-up for this season and how Mark thinks each of them will do…

MBM Super One Driver line-up:

IAME Cadet

  • Freddie Spindlow – I’m hoping to be challenging top ten
  • Evan Brown – massive jump for him if we can make A finals I’ll be happy

Honda Cadet

  • Justin Breward – certainly hoping to be challenging for wins
  • Daniel Holdsworth – on a strict budget I would be happy with top half of grid

Junior X30

  • Fraz Fenwick – I see no reason why we can’t get top ten and maybe even higher
  • Gracie Holdsworth – if we get a few A finals I will be very happy

Senior X30

  • Thomas Turner – really expect to be challenging for top spot, we will certainly be pushing as hard as we can!

MBM

It’s fair to say they do have a strong line-up for this season. In the Cadet and Junior classes they have one driver who should excel along with another who may be down on experience. The more experienced drivers should help the others along and as for Thomas Turner, well I strongly believe he is a confirmed title contender!

Speaking to Mark showed me how passionate he is about the sport and about his team, he seems very proud of what he has built up himself and has a lot of faith in his drivers which I believe is key. He looks to have a strong team for Super One this year, I see no reason why we won’t see them on the podium in their first year!

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Thomas Turner Driver Profile

Super One results:

  • 2014 – Mini Max – Finished 6th
  • 2015 – Junior Max – Finished 8th
  • 2016 – Junior Max – Pulled out due to lots of problems, only did 3 rounds.

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Thomas has a good record in Super One as you can see from the stats above. In his last two full campaigns he was top ten, he knows the tracks, he is quick and he is a great racer! He’s already got a proven record in the Senior X30 class too, he appeared at the last round (PFI) with MBM in Senior X30 last year and won the round with pole, wins in all heats and a 1st and 2nd in the finals! Had he not been driving with a cracked chassis he may have just won both finals!

It was a race that convinced him to go with X30 class having raced in Rotax for a couple of years. However, Thomas will have his work cut out this year with the Senior X30 grid looking to exceed 70 drivers! However, Thomas is confident and feels very much at home with the team. Thomas gets on particularly well with Jordan Baines, who is usually on the spanners for him. As we all know good communication is needed between the driver and mechanic for the good results to come.

Watch out for Thomas at Rowrah, he has a proven track record there. I’m expecting him to go very well next weekend!

Thomas Turner 5-1

5 words to describe yourself:

  • Committed
  • Consistant
  • Dedicated
  • Fast
  • Competitive

4 favourite tracks:

  • Rowrah
  • PFI
  • Shenington
  • Larkhall

3 Favourite drivers:

  • Lewis Hamilton
  • Jenson Button
  • Daniel Riccardo

2 Memorable moments:

  • Winning 2012 LGM Series
  • Racing senior X30 for the first time

1 goal:

  • To do well in Super One this year

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Mark Baines 5-1

5 words to describe yourself:

  • Hardworking
  • Passionate
  • Dedicated
  • Loyal
  • Fun

4 favourite tracks:

  • Rowrah
  • Wombwell
  • Kartodromo Valencia
  • Larkhall

3 Favourite drivers:

  • Jonny Edgar (hardworking and amazing attitude)
  • Thomas Turner (started off so shy but has an amazing talent)
  • Jordan Baines (never had a budget but so talented and amazing work ethic)

2 Memorable moments:

  • Winning British championship in 2012 with Thomas Turner
  • Jordan’s first ever win such an emotional moment

1 goal:

  • To help people achieve their goals and to prove to people how good a team we are.

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Written by Bethanie Lawson

Images courtesy of Stu Stretton and Marc Quinlivan

 

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Abigail Ross – The long road to Super One

Tony Kart Racing Team announce 2017 Driver line-up

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Emily Linscott’s dream Rookie season

It may be a new name to you and it certainly was to us until the end of 2016. Then Emily Linscott decided to enter our Rookie of the Year Award and the rest is history as they say. The young Junior Subaru racer and Brentwood Karting graduate is now already looking to make big moves in the Motorsport World after just one year in the sport. It’s huge progress to make so quickly and we wanted to find out how she did it.

Emily started her karting career at Brentwood. It was our 2015 Circuit of the Year with Dan Lee from Brentwood winning our Outstanding Contribution Award in 2016. The Junior Race League has seen many good drivers come through with the driver coaching playing a big part along with the competitive side of the racing and advice Dan gives to parents which in this case was former Motorcycle Racer, Mark Linscott.

Emily Linscott picking up Highly Commended Female Driver of the Year 2016 award
Emily Linscott picking up Highly Commended Female Driver of the Year 2016 award

When I asked Mark about their time at Brentwood he said: “Brentwood was where Emily fell in love with the sport. It was really good fun and all the other drivers and parents were very friendly. When we decided to move on Dan Lee was extremely helpful! He gave us lots of valuable advice and tips which we have implemented ever since.”

However, Brentwood wasn’t where it originally started as Emily explains:

“My first test in kart was at a party at Rayleigh Indoor Karting (shortlisted for 2016 Karting magazine Circuit or Club of the Year) and I liked it a lot so moved on to Brentwood.”

When you first go to Brentwood you are put into a Development School before moving on to an Academy. Emily seemed to pass through these very quickly and was ready to move up to Rotax or X30, but Dan Lee suggested otherwise.

“Dan said that I should stay and do a championship. Although it was unlikely I’d win he said that doing a championship would teach me a lot and if I could get some good results it’d give me a lot of confidence.”

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Emily took this advice and went on to finish 9th in the Championship, but beat many of the top drivers there over the course of the season. The lessons learnt were invaluable, her confidence shot up and now she was ready to move on.

“When we spoke to Dan about moving he suggested we go and race Pro-Karts like former Brentwood racer, Ben Green, did. I somehow got led to a test in a Junior Subaru and loved it straight away. It may not be a nationwide class but the racing seemed very close and the engines seemed very equal which I liked. The lower power also means mistakes are very costly which I think teaches me a lot more.”

It’s to many an unusual decision given how the series is regional, but Mark (Emily’s Dad) said there was also another reason.

“When we moved away from Brentwood I personally wanted to go to Rotax, but Emily liked the Subaru’s. The engines are a lot more affordable and given how new she was to the sport we thought giving it a go would be a great decision in case Emily didn’t like the sport as much after a couple of months.”

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Now in Subaru’s and quickly up to pace Emily started to show some promising pace, but continued to race in the corporate side and in her first year of karting won her first championship at Bayford Meadows! Now that doesn’t happen every year.

Away from Bayford Emily got herself to a ranking of 14th in the UK for the Sodi World Series and managed to win the coveted ‘Buckmore Park Junior Star Pupil Award’, the first girl to do so in its 16 year history. Throughout 2016 Emily visited a total of 24 circuits and the experience and lessons learnt were giving her great results.

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Arden

The results and progress of Emily sparked interest over at Arden’s Young Racing Driver Academy and at the back end of last year Emily joined the programme. The further progress she will make there could take her career to the next level and her Dad says: “It shows potential sponsors she how serious she is about becoming successful in racing.” Which I fully agree with!

Cars

During 2016 Emily also gained her ARDS licence and had a couple of tests in a Ginetta Junior. Her quick rise in pace over the two tests almost saw her move up to Ginetta’s for this year, but she said: “I’d love to have another year in karting before I think about moving up to cars.”

So, 2018 could see a move away for karting for Emily, but for now it will be great to see what she can do in Junior Subaru.

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Rookie of the Year 2016 – Highly Commended

Emily was one of 15 drivers nominated for our 2016 Rookie of the Year Award. She got a very strong following from the karting public and the panel felt she was good enough to be one of three highly commended drivers. It’s a great achievement considering the strong list of drivers she was up against!

Moose Motorsport

Things become even more impressive when you discover that Emily races as a Privateer and has already set up her own team. Under the brand, ‘Moose Motorsport’ Mark explains: “It was actually Emily’s decision to run on our own as she felt we all worked together well enough to not need the assistance of a team. There are some expensive teams out there so we’ve set up our own where we are looking to take on one or two other drivers at an affordable price. This will continue into cars too.

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How Karting has changed Emily as a person

“Karting has helped Emily grow in confidence massively. It’s not only helped her in the sport, she’s able to chat more comfortably to people she has never met before and also helped with her schooling too!”

It’s always great to hear how karting can help people away from the circuit, but on it Emily has really made a name for herself in the corporate and Subaru World. That was taken to another level via the Karting Magazine Awards, but it sounds like it may be on the TOCA package with the Ginetta Junior Series in the near future.

emily-bmjs-pic-6

5-1

5 words to describe yourself  

Determined, Dedicated, Loyal, Strong and Fabulous

4 of your favourite tracks

Buckmore Park, PFI, Sandown Park and Whilton Mill

3 drivers that have inspired you

Ben Green, Dan Harper, Ayrton Simmons

2 memorable moments in your career

Winning my first championship

My first lap record

1 goal for the future

To become a successful professional racing driver.

emily-bmjs-pic-3

Follow or contact Emily at:

Facebook: https://facebook.com/emilylinscottracing/

Twitter: @emily_linscott

Instagram: emi_racing_

Website: www.emilylinscottracing.com & www.moosemotorsport.net

YRDA: http://yrda.co.uk/emily-linscott

Email: emily@moosemotorsport.net

Written by Chris McCarthy

Images courtesy of Paul Babington & Bethanie Lawson

 

Like this article? Then check these out:

Abigail Ross – The long road to Super One

Olli Caldwell: My 5 best karting memories

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Abigail Ross – The long road to Super One

Abigail Ross from Mulbuie (A small village in the highlands of Scotland, 3 and a half hours drive North of Glasgow) after starting the final in 3rd position at PFi Super One 2016 is back and has decided to enter Super One this year for the full championship, where she will have to travel approximately 7000 miles to compete across the UK throughout 2017. We caught up with her to talk about her history in karting and how the traveling will affect her this year.

How and when did you get in to karting?

“When I was 11 years old I went along to a ‘Let’s Go Karting’ event run by volunteers at the North of Scotland kart club (NSKC). Despite being extremely slow and tentative I had lots of fun and couldn’t wait to go back out in a kart again. We bought an old second hand cadet kart for me to practice at the track and even though I was lapped in my first few novice races by faster, more experienced karters, I was really keen to improve and become competitive.”

 What classes/championships did you race in up until now? & For how long?

“I moved up to minimax when I was 12 and began competing in MSA club championships at NSKC (Golspie) and Grampian kart club (Aberdeenshire). I won both Club Championships but lack of numbers in Mini Max forced me to move up to Junior Rotax the following year where I was again successful in the local club championships.

In 2015 I became Junior Rotax Vice Champion in both the ASKC (Association of Scottish Kart Clubs) Scottish Championship and the ASKC Scottish Super Series. I was awarded and presented the ‘Scottish Junior Driver of the Year Award’ by Dave Newsham.

Last year (2016) was my first year competing at British National level. At the start of the year I was faced with the dilemma of whether to race in the very competitive but dwindling grids of Junior Rotax or change to Junior X30. I decided to race both!! I competed in the NKF (Northern Karting Federation) with Junior Rotax and LGM (Little Green Man Series) in Junior X30 to gain experience, confidence and race craft in the larger grids. ”

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What made you decide to enter Super One this year?

“Last year was extremely tough. My confidence (and my kart!) took a massive battering, as I had very little experience in larger grids or in the X30 class and I had never driven at the majority of the tracks before LGM or NKF championship race weekends.

I volunteered to help out in the paddock at last years’ Larkhall Super One Round. It was good to get an insight into the structure of Super One Race weekends without the pressure of Racing.

In September I entered the final round of Super One at PFI as a guest driver in Junior X30. I had a great weekend and qualified in P3 for the Final.

I have learnt so much in the last two years and feel that I now have the confidence to be competitive in amongst one of the largest Super One grids this year.”

Are you planning on running with a team or privateer?

“I joined AMT Racing in 2015 under the mentoring and team leadership of Ashley Todd. This was a turning point for me as for the first time I was given guidance, driver coaching and technical support whilst learning and testing at different tracks in much larger grids than I had experienced before. I love being with the team at weekends, the continuity means that Ash and my mechanic, Kurtis Gregory, know me really well as a person and as a driver. This year I’m planning to continue with Ash and AMT Racing.”

“She works hard off the track at home training and keeping fit. She also spends time looking at onboard footage which helps her improve”Kurits, Abigails Mechanic

What are your expectations for this year?

“Over the last few years, I have learned to expect the unexpected in karting!

I know that I have the pace to be at the front of the grid but a certain amount of luck is involved on race days some of which is totally out of my control. I will certainly be putting 100% into every race weekend.”

How far is it to your nearest kart circuit?

“My nearest MSA track is in Golspie run by North of Scotland kart club. It is approx. 1hr drive North from where I stay. My team keep/prep and transport my kart so I am unable to do any testing locally.

The nearest Super One track this year is Rowrah which is a 6 hour drive.”

Abi Ross

 What is the longest you will have to travel for Super One this year? & Where will that be to?  

“Buckmore Park will be the furthest away track for me in Super One this year. It is over 600 miles and will take at least 10.5 hours to drive there. Flying from Inverness Airport is an option but flight times (one flight a day) means that we would not be able to fly back until Monday which would mean another day absent from school. For a race weekend, we travel on a Thursday/Friday and travel home on a Sunday night sometimes not getting home until 3 or 4am but it means that I am at school on Monday.”

Abigails Buckmore Super One weekend schedule

Wednesday evening – Pack cases/equipment
Thursday 8am – Leave home
Thursday 8pm  (depending on weather/traffic/lunch/roadworks etc.)  –  Arrive at hotel
Friday – Sunday – At track
Sunday 4pm-7pm – Leave track
Monday 2am-4am – Arrive home
Monday 8am – Leave for school (after just 4 hours sleep)

Do you ever feel more pressure to do well after you’ve travelled for a long time?

“I wouldn’t say I feel any more pressure to do well as I always try to do my best but I would say it is slightly harder for me to be at my ‘best’ after travelling for a whole day before a race weekend.”                                                                                                                                                                                                          

 Do you ever feel like you miss out on testing because of the amount of travelling?

“Definitely. I have to travel on a Friday so that I can be at the track on Saturday morning. To make the journey worthwhile, I usually test the Saturday and Sunday and we travel home on Sunday night. This not only means that I have to have the Friday off school to travel but also that the expense of travelling, accommodation etc. increases.”

Abi Ross

 Will you have to miss much school to compete this year?

 “I have to limit the days I have absent from school, especially this year, as I will be sitting Nat5 (Scottish GCSE) exams. I catch up with school work during the week and try to do as much as possible when travelling. Testing on a Friday for Super One means I need 2 days off school, as I have to travel on the Thursday.”

“We were very hesitant at the start of last year as we did not know how Abigail would cope with the travelling, busy race weekend’s and missing days at school. Abigail coped really well with everything and has managed to keep up to date with her schoolwork and proved this by getting good results in her mock exams. The travelling is tedious and costly but well worth it when we see how well she has improved and how enthusiastic she is towards the sport. If any helicopter company would like to sponsor Abigail for this year please contact us asap haha”Abigails Mum – Karin

Abigail Ross was our special mention in the Female Driver of the Year class in our 2016 awards, which I believe she very much deserved. In response to this, Abigail said “I am delighted to have got a special mention as one to watch next year. Glad my efforts in amongst larger grids have not gone unnoticed”. Chris McCarthy said: “For my Special Mention I have picked a driver I see as a one to watch next year. When I watched Abigail race at PFI for the last Super One round I was hugely impressed. She was battling with the likes of Oliver Clarke, Angus Fender and Gordon Mutch and she looked comfortable. That performance combined with her NKF results deserved recognition and I strongly believe she’ll do well in whatever she competes in next year.”

 

Abi Ross

In my opinion, Abigails commitment to the sport is insane! Obviously the travelling could be a worry and will she be too tired to perform her best? However she seems very confident and believes she can do it which is very important. I feel as though she has the experience and that 2017 could very much be her year! She has experience on most if not all the tracks on the 2017 Super One calendar which is a great start to the season and her performance at PFi super one 2016 was incredible. Could we be looking at a female winner in the Junior X30 Class this year?

Abigail’s 5-1

5 words to describe yourself?

  • Determined
  • Committed
  • Sporty
  • Realistic
  • Modest

4 of your favourite tracks?

  • Rowrah
  • PFi
  • Whilton Mill
  • GYG

3 drivers that have inspired you?

  • Sir Jackie Stewart
  • Ayrton Senna
  • Max Verstappen

2 memorable moments in your career?

  • Entering Super One for the first ever time as a guest driver, at the last round at PFI and starting P3 for the main final.
  • Being awarded and presented ASKC Scottish Junior driver of the year 2015

1 goal for the future?

  • To learn and progress every time I go out on track

 

 

Written by Bethanie Lawson

Images courtesy of Bethanie Lawson Photography & Chris Walker, Kartpix

Videos courtesy of TDi Media

 

Like this article? Then check these out:

Abbi Pulling – Highly Commended Female Driver 2016

Female Driver of the Year 2016

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Arrive and Drive column – January

2017 is well and truly underway, and what a year of A&D karting we have ahead of us. With new tracks for DMAX, new formats in Club100, new prices, and much more of the same awesome karting we keep coming back for.

DMAX

DMAX have recorded record entries for their first round at Milton Keynes on the 19th February with over 60 people signed up already. The 2017 DMAX championship is going to be one of the biggest and best ever.

Club100

Club100 are back with the Lightweight, Heavyweight, and Elite sprints, and due to demand 2017 sees the return of the Clubman sprints. For the teams, there are the Premier, Clubman, and Intermediate endurances catering for all abilities, plus the 60-minute challenge. Not forgetting Club100 have introduced the brand-new quadrant series where teams of 1-4 drivers race in four 25-minute races. With so much choice there’s bound to be a series for you.

BPKDC

Buckmore Park are still pushing forward after winning Karting magazine’s circuit of the year and have announced they are holding two ‘Extreme’ championships with the BP Extreme Solo and BP Extreme Team events held over four rounds in the summer months. Buckmore have also lowered the prices of their main solo events, find out more here.

BUKC

bukc2017-buckmore-lap-1-carnage

Rounds 1 and 2 of the BUKC were held at 2016 circuit of the year, Buckmore Park on the 1st and 2nd of February with over 200 students competing in Club100’s karts. With racing very wet on the 1st for the Premier and intermediate classes. Loughborough A took victory in the round 1 sprints being the only team to take 2 wins, one each for Darryl Evans and Piers Prior. Wins also for Nottingham, Hertfordshire, Liverpool, and Reading A’s.

bukc2017-buckmore-r1-podium

Round 2’s endurances were equally as wet, this time Oxford Brookes A, C, and Hertfordshire A took victories. Hertfordshire A’s win in race 3 was Sam Spinnael’s 4th win in as many races in the BUKC, an un-blemished record, can he continue that for the rest of the season?

bukc2017-buckmore-leaning-tower-of-belgium-sam-spinael-garda

The championship stands with Oxford Brookes A & C first and third split by Loughborough A, with Nottingham A close behind split by only 5 points. However, with dropped rounds to come as the championship progresses it is likely some teams will shoot up the leader board.

bukc2017-buckmore-cafe-night-duo

In the Inters, Liverpool have a small buffer to Warwick B and Leeds Beckett A

For a full report visit the BUKC website

Thanks must go to ‘Mr Karting’ Stu Stretton for the great pics above, many more can be viewed on the BUKC Facebook page.

NKL

Whilton Mill NKL is back again this year and entries are filling up fast! 20 entries were received within 2 days of opening. With the first round on March 6th and will be streamed live on their YouTube channel. For more info and entry info visit http://www.nkleague.co.uk/nkl/

Covkartsport

Covkartsport’s winter series is underway with round 1 at Daytona Tamworth taking place at the end of January. Round 2 Whilton Mill will take place on the 19th of February. The series is traveling far and wide and will provide great racing.

British Rental Kart Championship 2017

Karting magazine caught up with BRKC series organiser and VLN racer Bradley Philpot after the 2017 BRKC held at Formula Fast indoor karting, Milton Keynes.

“Karting Magazine: The BRKC is now one of the biggest events in A&D karting in the UK, and is recognised all over the world as is evident by the number of foreign drivers, what makes it so attractive?

Bradley Philpot: I think BRKC is now recognised as having a particularly high level of competition, and rather than putting drivers off, I believe they want to test themselves against the best in the World. Drivers also see the level of effort that the host circuit put into performance equalising the karts. But we could talk about the TV coverage, huge prizes, the list goes on. I would like to think it’s the entire package that attracts drivers.

KM: What prompted you to start the event in the first place, and how has it evolved?

BP: Myself and James Auld (now the BRKC’s commentator) were looking for a high level rental kart series in the UK that was similar in nature to the Kart World Championship (formerly Indoor Kart World Championship). We couldn’t find anything that contained everything we wanted, so I decided to set something up myself.

BRKC2017 hairpin 1

KM: Many other karting and motorsport series have been struggling for interest and entries in recent times, yet the BRKC sells out every year and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down, what do you think sets it apart from other championships in this regard?

BP: The fact that we do our best to improve upon what is already a deliberately very fair series each year is obvious to the competitors. We believe that affordability, prestige and fairness shouldn’t all be mutually exclusive terms in karting. People don’t simply come to race either, as actually watching the races you aren’t competing in is extremely interesting too. The strategic element with the laser pitstop system is also unique to BRKC. Having to outfox your opponents not just in terms of speed, but with a superior strategy adds to the drama and the entertainment value of the series, and keeps drivers wanting more.

KM: The event has been running for seven years now and just gets better every year, what have you and the Formula Fast team been doing to keep it fresh and exiting for the drivers?

BP: Each year we have a huge debrief about what worked well and what could have been better. Phil and Ollie at Formula Fast love to use BRKC as a showcase for how fantastic their kart circuit is, and every year they demonstrate brilliantly that this is the case. We try to add extra elements each year which genuinely add to the event, without including gimmicks. The laser pitstops for example, were an evolution of a previous system which contained a potential human error element from staff members. With the introduction of the lasers, the emphasis was entirely back on the drivers to get their pitstops right. Other factors like the increase in quality of the live streamed TV coverage, which is now close to F1 levels of professionalism by Scruffy Bear Pictures, also keeps drivers excited for the following season.

andrew-duff- BRKC2017 pitstop

KM: The BRKC is run over one weekend, and in January which is unusual, what was the decision behind this?

BP: We recognised early on that there are many rental kart series as well as car racing championships which run through the summer, and were extremely keen to avoid clashing with any of those. From my experience at the Kart World Championship, which is held over one week, a standalone event works well for this kind of format and allows us a full year to plan and perfect everything for the following event.  As the British National Qualifying Series for the KWC, we also consult with other NQS from across Europe to make sure the foreign drivers can compete at the events in each country without clashes. I think it works well and complements the other series in the UK and across Europe.

KM: Formula Fast Milton Keynes has hosted the event since 2014, despite its small size it seems to work well, what make this partnership so successful?

BP: The team at Formula Fast bring a certain skillset to BRKC, which allows me to focus on other elements like promotion without the distraction of taking payments for example. They are very experienced in running high quality events, and demonstrate that skill each year. In terms of the venue size, much like the Race of Champions which takes place in stadia around the world, Formula Fast’s arena-like circuit feels like just the right size for spectators to enjoy all the action, and drivers to enjoy driving the circuit. It helps that we also change the track during the weekend to give drivers an extra challenge with something new to learn.

jake-crofts-1 BRKC2017

KM: You race in the event, as well as organise it, what’s your favourite thing about taking part?

BP: There was a time a few years ago when I recognised that I needed to either organise or compete in order to do a good job of either of them. However since we have been hosted by Formula Fast, I haven’t needed to get involved in the running of the event during the weekend, which allows me to enjoy the weekend as a competitor. I think that also gives me a clear perspective of what can be improved and what works well from a driver’s eye view. My favourite thing about taking part is simply how hard it is to do well. You have to dig so deep to beat the best drivers from around Europe, so any success you have tastes all the sweeter for it.

bradley-philpot-12 BRKC2017

KM: It is widely regarded as one of the most competitive championships with some of the closest racing around, what makes it so tight? Moreover, considering how tough it is, how has a certain Ruben Boutens managed to walk away with victory 4 years running?

BP: Firstly, the quality of the drivers and the closeness of the kart performance makes it so tight. The best drivers truly take it very seriously, agonising over whether to remove 100 grams of lead from their seat insert before each race to get their weight just right, practicing in the days before the event, studying strategy among many other things. I think Ruben’s dominance of the championship for the last four years demonstrates that BRKC truly does allow the best driver to win. Ruben has simply been the best. He’s something special, having won the BRKC four times, as well as being reigning Dutch, Italian, Belgian and Polish rental kart champion. He was Red Bull Kart Fight Dutch Champion too. He’s been Vice World Champion three times now. Maybe this year he will finally go one better! Did I mention he runs and wins marathons for fun?

Ruben Boutens Winning BRKC2017

KM: Moreover, are there any drivers you’d like to have at the event who you think might be able to mix it with the big boys, like for instance Club100 champions Steve Brown, Joe Holmes, or Tom Golding?

BP: It would be great to have Steve Brown and Joe Holmes for sure. We always want the best drivers available and I do my best to extend a welcome to anyone who hasn’t tasted BRKC before. Tom Golding competed this year, narrowly missing out on the semi-finals. He had some bad luck and could have finished a little higher, but he worked hard over the weekend to dig into the specific style required to be fast on a slippery indoor circuit. Former FIA World Champion Colin Brown raced with us in 2016, also just missing out on the semi-finals. It’s brutal out there!

KM: Are there any exiting plans for the future?

BP: We always have exciting plans. I can’t divulge them fully now, but expect some more technology that hasn’t ever appeared in any other kart series in the world. I’ll leave it at that.

BRKC2016 train

KM: This all sounds great! How can people get involved next year?

BP: The best way is to join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/britishrentalkartchampionship/ and to register your interest at www.brkc.co.uk . Join in the conversation on Facebook, because the drivers are extremely helpful and friendly, and there’s always someone to answer your questions. Watch some of the footage of previous events at our YouTube channel BritishChampionship . That will show you how everything works.

KM: You are making moves in international car racing, most notably at the Nurburgring, what keeps you coming back to karting? Is there any advantage to your career in staying involved?

BP: I’ve always loved karting, and I genuinely think it helps keep you sharp. I’m embarking on a season with Peugeot in the brand new 308 TCR car in the VLN Series and I look around the grid at all the drivers who either never karted or have given it up, and I always feel like I have an advantage over those guys. It’s brilliant for fitness too. I wish I had time to do more of it.

BRKC2017 podium

KM: Finally, is there anyone else you’d like to thank who possibly helped with the event, or for any other reason?

BP: It’s dangerous to start mentioning people because I’m bound to forget someone, but aside from the track staff, James Auld (commentator) and Darren Cook (TV director) are both instrumental in making the event truly meaningful. They do such a brilliant job. But there are so many people behind the scenes who make BRKC what it is.

KM: Thanks a lot for your time Bradley and best of luck in with the event for next year, and also for the VLN.

Thank you to Slawek Piskorz for is great images, head over to his Facebook page or the BRKC Facebook group where all of the photos from the event are available

5 Things you need to know from BRKC 2017

-3 days racing held at Formula Fast indoor karting centre in Milton Keynes

-100 drivers from all over Europe

-£1000 cash prize

-Ruben Boutens wins 4th straight title

-Closest and most competitive A&D championship in the UK

The report of the final can be found here

Driver of The Month

There haven’t been many A&D events since the new year, the main exception being the BRKC, therefore we though it only right that the A&D driver of the month for January is…

Ruben Boutens!

Ruben Boutens BRKC2017 doty

Ruben has now won the event 4 years in a row, showing utter dominance every year. Furthermore he is unbeaten in any race (including heats and semi finals) in 13 races! Incredible. While there was no vote this month we didn’t think anyone would begrudge Ruben the crown for January 2017.

February’s driver of the month will return to the original format, feel free to get in touch on social media during February to suggest drivers for the shortlist. A winner will then be voted on by you at the end of the month.

 

Written by Piers Prior

 

Like this article? Read more Arrive and drive column’s here:

Arrive and drive column – December

Arrive and drive column – November

Arrive and drive column – October

Arrive and drive column – September

Arrive and drive column – August