Category Archives: Buckmore Park Kart Club

Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championship Round 6 Report


Round 6 of the BPKC summer championship incorporated the final rounds of the Kent Kart Championships and also the British F100 series. If that wasn’t enough for karting fans, the MSA Bambino championship runners also packed out the Chatham parkland circuit.

Kristian Brookes had the legs on Bradley Hardy in Mini X30

Eden Spanswick takes MSA Bambino trial race win

Thirteen young Bambino drivers took part in a trial MSA race day at Buckmore Park on Sunday and the outcome proved to be a resounding success. The circuit commentator – Allan Smallman thoroughly enjoying the on track action from the diminutive and combative pilots. The Grand Final was won by Eden Spanswick, his margin of victory was just over 6 seconds after 10 laps, outlining his phenomenal pace. Jack Cunningham came through the field from the back to finish 2nd, a very accomplished drive amongst his fellow competitors. Mason Bishop was 3rd from Fraser Anderson in 4th. 5th went to Henry McCarthy from the fastest lap holder Freddie Housley in 6th. Completing the runners were – Archie Clark, Laith Khan, Benjamin Clark, Freddie Duncan, Jack Sant, Joshua Humpherston and Kristian Stefanov.

Theo soars to debut circuit win in Honda Cadets

Having watched Theo Micouris many times being the bridesmaid in the Honda Cadet class, it was wonderful to see him turn up and dominate on Sunday, leading every competitive lap during the day. His commitment was evident on every lap as he tucked his body in behind his #74 kart’s steering wheel on the exit of every corner. His immaculate Tiger Prints Teamware livered kart was almost caught over the last lap by Louis Horsley, who was a mere 0.48seconds behind over the line. Horsley had suffered a huge crash during one of Saturday afternoon’s testing sessions, leaving him with a wrecked crash helmet, cut shoulder and feeling battered all over. With that in mind it was a superb recovery drive by the #38. Sebastian Bloch had a great opening lap and enjoyed a great dice with Horsley, Justin Breward and Ronnie Mansfield until Horsley broke clear.

Onto the last lap Bloch and Mansfield slowed each other down at hairpin 2 allowing Zach Ripley through, he finished 3rd on the road behind Micouris and Horsley but then cruelly received a 10 second drop nose penalty, hurting him greatly in the championship. So the Ambition #9 of Bloch took third from Mansfield in 4th. Frankie Elwell had towed along behind Ripley for much of the race and finished 5th. Oscar Teuten was in the mix in 6th, Mitchell Gibbons 7th, Declan Russell 8th, Breward ended up 9th from a bruised Zach Walters in 10th, who had a heavy impact with the Champion barriers earlier in the day. Fastest lap went to the unfortunate Ripley who was eventually classified 14th.

Theo Micouris pulls clear in Honda Cadet

Oliver Appleby takes race and championship in Junior Max

The damp qualifying session caused KPi’s Oliver Appleby a few problems in the morning, leaving him languishing near the back of the competitive Junior Max field. He made up for that with a storming drive in heat one, when he finished behind the Project One kart of James Wharrier. He then won the Pre final and the Grand Final in style, holding off his rivals by just enough over the 16 lap race. The Project One team drivers of Wharrier, Jack Steadman and Declan Lee had enjoyed racing amongst themselves all day, come the final Lee had the pace over his teammates charging through to 2nd behind Appleby. Steadman was 3rd from Wharrier in 4th.Tom Rotherham finished 5th with Thomas Lawson in 6th. Ryan Chapman, Max Goodwin, Sam Sanders and Lewis Boret completed the top 10. Wharrier set the fastest lap on lap 15. Save of the day went to Josh Wellard who had his axle snap leaving him reversing down the hill on the opening lap, scattering those behind across the track in avoidance!

Oliver Appleby took a classy win in Junior Max

Freddy Simpson-Stacey takes close win in JX30, Kristian Brookes victorious in Mini X30

Seven karts made it out for the JX30 final, with two Mini X30s sharing the track for their class battle. Once underway two drivers lapped the 17 laps of the final as one, Freddy Simpson-Stacey leading away from pole with Alfie Brookes shadowing his every move. Behind a good race developed, between Daniel Gale, Ben Cowley, Finley Cross, Scott Sumpton and Charlie Sladden, giving us the excitement the class has often promised. In the Mini X30 class Bradlley Hardy couldn’t match the pace of Kristian Brookes and eventually retired from the race, leaving Brookes to take the win. Back at the front the Roalf racing kart of Alfie Brooks made his move on the Evolution kart of Simpson-Stacey on the penultimate lap at turn 1. He could only hold down the lead as far as the bottom end of the circuit though, when his adversary took the place back. Over the final lap Brooks had a try around the outside of hairpin 2 but it was never going to come off, even though he had briefly edged in front as they turned into the tight left hand corner. Simpson-Stacey took the win and fastest lap, Brooks just 0.009 seconds behind as they crossed the finish line. Behind Gale had secured 3rd place a few laps from home finishing 6 seconds behind the leading duo, Ben Cowley won the battle for 4th, from the new Kent champion Finley Cross in 5th. Scott Sumpton was 6th and Charlie Sladden 7th. The winner also took the race’s fastest lap.

Alfie Brooks tries to go around the outside of eventual Junior X30 winner Freddy Simpson-Stacey

Callum’s race, Riley’s championship in Junior Subaru UK

32 Junior Subaru UK drivers arrived at the circuit for round 12 of their championship, marking another record breaking entry milestone, for the popular junior 4 stroke class. With the circuit starting off very damp in places, wet tyres were the favourite choice for the morning qualifying session and making the most of the conditions, putting a new face to the top of the leader board was Ross Hastings, his LICA kart setting pole position for heat 1. Callum Gunning took the other front row slot, from Harvey Roffe, Owen Hizzy, Tom Emson and Poppi Stephenson completing what was an unusual looking top 6 grid. Poppi’s championship elect brother Riley languished way back down in 26th after gambling on slicks, although he didn’t seem too perturbed at all by this according to his anxious mum!

Junior Subaru UK karts fill the grid for their final

Hastings flew off the line to lead away heat 1 from Gunning with Hizzy and Roffe settling into 3rd and 4th. At the end of lap 2 Gunning’s DNL kart had a good run up the hill and ran alongside Hastings through Café bend, something had to give and the two made contact, sending the LICA kart briefly off the track and facing in the wrong direction, before recovering now way back in 23rd spot. Gunning from then cruised to an 8 second victory taking the heat win comfortably. Behind the Ambition kart of Zac Spence usurped Roffe and Hizzy to take 2nd place, in 3rd amazingly was Stephenson! His well driven Clarke kart scything its way up 23 places through the pack, setting the fastest lap along the way too, it had been a breathtaking drive. The top 6 was completed by a frugal James Black, Hizzy and Tom Emson, with Roffe slipping to 8th behind Josh Pullen in 7th.The Pre Final was a more settled affair with Gunning leading every lap, soon to be shadowed by Stephenson who had dispatched Spence down to 3rd  eventually over four seconds behind the leading two. Black continued to show good pace in 4th, from Hizzy 5th and Tom Emson 6th.

The Grand Final was a two part affair after a nasty incident on the run up the hill on the 6th lap binging out the red flag; thankfully all the drivers involved were okay, though Novice and newcomer Kieran Ives was worse affected, he soon vowed to return his Sait run kart to the series. At the time of the red flag Gunning had led from Stephenson and after a single file restart they continued their two man fight at the front. With his recent impressive Birel Art debut under his belt, also at the same circuit, Callum’s consistent pace was effortless, Riley though knew that just finishing on his rivals bumper would assure him of the outright championship win, this he did perfectly. Zac Spence completed a good day at the office with a fine 3rd, from a charging James Tomsett, who had fought his Sait kart back from earlier nose fairing penalties to take 4th. Hizzy capped a good competitive day with 5th, another to fight his way up was Joe Hunt in 6th, Ross Hastings made a good recovery to finish 7th, James Black was bundled back to 8th after an unexplained power loss, Josh Pullen was 9th and Louis Barker 10th.

The fastest lap once again went to Stephenson’s rocket Clarke kart, on lap 13 of 14.

Callum Gunning was on top form to take the Junior Subaru UK final win

Leon Frost back to winning ways in Clubman, while Macauley Bishop wins in IAME

Leon Frost had a rough time of things during his last visit to Buckmore Park, for this month however he put those demons behind him and took a thoroughly deserved win, he led the race for 7 laps until he fell behind a Virtus mounted Joseph Knight, who was revelling in his new kart. The Clarke kart of Frost though timed his move right, snatching back the lead on the last lap to take the win. Jack Matthews (KPi) moved up from 6th on the grid to 3rd at the finish just in front of a very competitive and fastest lap holder – Macie Hitter (Virtus) in 4th. Vinny Lloyd took a good 5th ahead of last month’s victor Max Solarski, who had a real up and down day in 6th. Jack Theobald took 7th, Christopher Doble 8th, Nathan Marques 9th and Josh Rudd in 10th. Macauley Bishop finished ahead of the only other IAME runner Jakub Jakoniuk.

‘Frosty’ took the Clubman win from the #88 of Jo Knight

Elliot Rice takes Senior Max thriller, Ayers cruises to X30 win

The Senior drivers enjoyed their usual 3 heats and a final format with no qualifying to determine their grids. After the trio of frantic heats Elliot Rice sat on pole position, at the circuit where he has always shone. Championship leader Lewis Brown sat alongside him on the grid, Luke Freestone capped some good heat results with 3rd position and Daniel Devereaux started from 4th on the 19 kart grid. Henry Ayers and Michael Hafford were the only X30 entrants; they started some distance behind the Rotax runners. The opening few laps saw Rice and Brown pull clear until they were joined by Charlie Turner, who had started from P10 which he promptly proved wasn’t a deterrent. Devereaux fell back from the leaders after a flying start; Freestone also fell back behind Lewis Ridd. By mid-race Turner was ready to make his bid for the lead, firstly passing Brown on lap 5 and then Rice for the lead on lap 7. Rice and Brown didn’t let Turner go though and returned the pressure that he himself had put on them. Rice grabbed the lead back on lap 10 of 12 and then managed to fend off Turner to the flag, the last two laps being particularly fraught between the threesome. Rice was delighted to have ended the championship with a win after an indifferent run earlier in his campaign; Turner had tried everything to take the win but ultimately had to settle for 2nd, with Brown on his tail, in doing so securing the title. Lewis Ridd took a fine 4th; Harry Gent up 4 places to take 5th, Devereaux was 6th, Freestone 7th, Troy Beswick 8th, Drew Holmes 9th and Harry Smithson 10th. Mark Figues took the 177 class win finishing 12th overall. Henry Ayers comfortably won the X30 class from Michael Hafford.

For Buckmore Park the day wasn’t over as the British F100 and MOD 160 classes ran into the evening, entreating those left clearing up in the busy paddock.

Elliot Rice leads Charlie Turner and new champion Lewis Brown in Senior Max

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championship Round 5 Report


A cool and dry circuit greeted the competitors for the fifth round of the BPKC summer championships at the parkland Chatham circuit and though the entries were down the racing excelled.

O’Sullian fastest in Bambinos

Only three Bambino drivers were entered for this month’s event, with Oscar O’Sullivan heading the trio during the timed runs and final. Freddie Duncan wasn’t too far behind in second place from Sebastian Minns in third.

O’Sullivan was fastest of the Bambino trio

‘Mad Max’ benefits from last lap shuffle in the Clubman class, while CJ Morgan is dominant in IAME

The joint Honda Clubman and IAME final followed the Bambinos onto the circuit, for their final and witnessed the continued three way season long scrap between Joseph Knight, Leon Frost and Jack Matthews. Each has had their wins this year in the class, with inevitably one or two contentious moments. The final began with an on form Jo Knight leading away, having dominated the morning’s heat and then securing the pole spot for the final by winning the Pre Final. Both Matthews and Frost had slipped back into the pack on the opening lap, which gave Macie Hitter and Blake Ticehurst a spell at the front behind Knight. Maksymillian ‘Mad Max’ Solarski soon eclipsed Hitter and Ticehurst to provide the threat to the leader, that was until a recovering Matthews worked his way up into 2nd place on lap 8. He didn’t take long to convert his speed into the lead of the race on lap 11 and looked to have the pace to pull away. This proved to be a false dawn however as Knight and Solarski stayed glued to his bumper. By lap 13 of 17 Frost had fought his way into 3rd demoting Mad Max to 4th; this left the Matthews, Knight, Frost trio once again fighting for the victory. Going into the last lap the blue KPi kart of Matthews still held a slender lead but he held a defensive line into the 1st hairpin, which gave the DNL kart of Knight the chance to have a run around the outside into hairpin 2, this didn’t pay off as both the leaders drifted wide, giving the Clarke kart of Frost a clear run on the exit of the hairpin.

‘Mad Max’ Slarski, was the Clubman winner

He led going down the hill, Matthews managed to just hold onto 2nd with Solarski and the slightly delayed Knight close behind. At the bottom of the hill Matthews saw an opening on the inside of Frost into Paddock bend, the two leaders then found themselves sharing the same piece of track, which gave an opportunist Solarski a chance to pass both of them ! Matthews unfortunately ended up spinning after the contact with Frost, who himself had slipped to third as they crossed the finish line. Mad Max in the 303 Squadron kart celebrated in style, taking an elusive 1st Buckmore win, Jo Knight finishing 2nd, unfortunately for Frost a post-race penalty dropped him to the bottom of the results behind a bitterly frustrated Matthews. Novice George Oxford (Ambition motorsport) inherited 3rd, Jack Theobald 4th, Ticehurst just pipped Hitter to 5th after a close race long dice. Zack Byrne completed the Clubman runners in 7th. Jack Matthews took the fastest lap before his demise. In the IAME class CJ Morgan picked a nose fairing penalty which dropped him to the tail of the three class entry in the Pre Final, but then drove impeccably to take the main final win over Jakub Jakoniuk and Jakob Baldry. Clerk of the Course Martin Bean later commended young CJ Morgan over his awareness when amongst the Clubman leaders, which is often difficult to achieve in a mixed class races.

CJ Morgan dominated the IAME class

Appleby stoic in his defence to take Junior Max win

Oliver Appleby and James Wharrier ended up crossing the finish line as one after a tense 20 lap Junior Max final. The former Appleby looked to have his KPi kart in a safe lead until the Project One kart of Wharrier came alive over the closing laps, gradually hunting down the leader. Things came to a head on the penultimate lap at hairpin 2 when Wharrier found a gap on the inside of the blue KPi kart, the two of them exiting the corner side by side, Appleby however found some extra traction on the outside to hold Wharrier off along the next short straight, then converting his advantage into a win, although he was helped across the line by the red kart of Wharrier as he celebrated! Jack Steadman was just over a second back in third, comfortably ahead of Thomas Lawson and Josh Wellard. Declan Lee finished 6th after a first corner spin dropped him down the order having started 3rd. Harry Canham was 7th, Sam Sanders 8th and Oscar Lucas 9th. Wharrier took the fastest lap in his chase of winner Appleby.

Oliver Appleby checks behind to see James Wharrier closing

Ripley recovers from start confusion to win in Cadets

The Honda Cadet final began with total confusion amongst the drivers and those watching! Anticipating the lights had been causing problems amongst the Cadet drives before the final and so it proved again for several competitors including pole man Sonny Smith, who was swamped as he hesitated away the grid. Another to suffer greatly was Louis Horsely, as he rounded the first corner waiting to see the false start flag appear. Unfortunately for him it never did and those that were delayed knuckled down to fight their way back up the order. After the first lap Zach Walters headed his teammate Sebastian Bloch, Declan Russell and Zack Ripley, down from2nd on the grid, he had Ronnie Mansfield close behind, pole man Smith was down in 7th. Over the early laps it was clear to see that the two Ambition Motorsport karts of Walters and Bloch didn’t have the pace to stay at the front, as Ripley and Mansfield surged forward, hitting the front as early as lap 2. Initially Bloch held onto 3rd until Smith moved passed and chased down the pair in front.

Over the remaining laps Ripley and Mansfield worked as one, managing to hold a gap over the charging Smith, with two karts working better than one on its own. Although Mansfield matched Ripley’s every move he didn’t quite have enough to make a move on the leader, finishing 0.20 seconds down on the consistent Ripley. Smith was only 0.59 back in 3rd, setting the fastest lap as he fought to recover from his poor start. Declan Russell drove a stellar race finishing 4th, a confidence booster for him, similarly receiving a well-deserved boost was Mitchell Gibbons, who made up 8 places to finish a fine 5th, this after being somewhat harshly penalised in the Pre Final for gaining an unfair advantage. Sebastian Bloch looked dismayed as he crossed the line in an eventual 6th, after launching away so well at the start. Positions 7 – 10 were filled by Oscar Tueten, Ryan Willis a recovering Louis Horsley and Josh Hoy.

Zach Ripley hits the front of the Cadet final with Mansfield and Bloch behind

Haines starts his Birthday week with a win in the Senior classes

Ryan Haines took the wins in the morning heats and then went onto beat his nearest adversary Mike Ashby in the final by just over a second. Ashby had managed to close the gap to his Haines during the heats but despite holding on during the early laps, ultimately fell just shy after 15 laps in the Final. Steve Boret enjoyed tussling with the pair in the first couple of heats until problems prevented him from starting the final. Novice Christopher Kalvashoti  was the remaining Rotax runner in 3rd. The only X30 class entrant Michael Hafford had enjoyed racing with the Rotax runners, until handling gremlins held him back in the final. Haines secured the fastest lap on lap 13.

Senior winner Ryan Haines leads Mike Ashby and Steve Boret

Simpson-Stacey pounces late to snatch JX30 win

Daniel Gale set off like a rocket in the JX30 class to lead from pole, while Alfie Prince put in a challenge for 2nd place from third on the grid. The latter was thwarted by contact somewhere early on which had dislodged his rear bumper, forcing him to pit. This left Freddy Simpson-Stacey with a clear track ahead, which he used to full effect to close in on Gale’s Roalf racing prepared kart. Simpson-Stacey’s Evolution run kart took the lead on lap 13 only for Gale to take it straight back. The pair couldn’t be separated over the remainder of the race, putting on a great show aboard the high revving IAME powered karts. Going into the last lap Gale still led with his shadow waiting for to find a chink in his armour, it came down the bottom of the circuit, as Simpson-Stacey caught Gale by surprise who was unable to retaliate. It was an exciting end to an exhilarating battle between the two teenagers. With Prince back circulating but heavily delayed, Rupert Flynn took 3rd place. Scott Sumpton was 4th with Prince classified 5th. Kristian Brookes was the only Mini X30 class driver competing, he unfortunately retired just after crossing the finish line on his 7th lap. Simpson-Stacey also took the fastest lap.

Freddy Simpson-Stacey and Daniel Gale raced hard in JX30

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championship Round 4 Report


Round 4 of the BPKC summer championships took place under warm and dry conditions, with the threat of afternoon rain thankfully not materialising.

Henry Ayers leads Harry Gent in Senior X30

Clark dominates in Bambinos

The Bambino class opened the afternoon’s finals, with Archie Clark cementing a clean sheet for the day with the fastest lap to take the win. Eden Spanswick was 0.250 seconds behind in 2nd and big Lewis Hamilton fan Freddy Duncan 3rd. Alexi Sorial was 4th in front of the winner’s brother Benjamin Clark in 5th. Novice Laith Khan , Oscar Cheasley and Sebastian Minns completed the classified finishers, Mason Bishop suffered an exclusion post race for an engine irregularity.

Oliver Clark topped the Bambinos

Gale takes another win in JX30 as Hardy seals debut Mini X30 victory

The Junior X30 and Mini X30 classes both proved to be very competitive this month. Freddy Simpson-Stacey won the Pre Final just from Daniel Gale, the Evolution kart a mere 0.09 secs ahead of the Roalf racing run kart, Ben Fayers was in touch too finishing 3rd in his Project One machine. The final continued as the Pre final left off with Simpson-Stacey and Gale exchanging the lead at the head of the field. Fayers had established himself in 3rd from welcome returnee Alfie Brookes in 4th. Disaster struck two of these four at the front on lap 6,when leader Simpson-Stacey had a mechanical flag for a loose rear bumper, forcing him to pit. A few laps later Brookes race ended at hairpin 2 when his rear axle moved causing him to sadly retire on the spot. This left Gale comfortable out in front holding a lead that he would keep to the chequered flag, continuing what has been a successful year for him, he now faces a mammoth 500 lap Demelza House charity event, held at Bayford Meadows on July 25th. Fayers kept him honest in 2nd place finishing just 0.39 seconds behind. Behind these two post race events affected the positions with 3rd place going to a deserving Ben Cowley, who had recovered from a frightening roll at Paddock Bend after tangling with Max Herbert in the first heat. The latter Herbert finished 4th after Alfie Prince had a post-race 10 second nose fairing penalty added, dropping him to 6th behind Novice driver Charlie Sladden in 5th. Ben Hodge had run near the front but was excluded post race for a rule non-compliance. Simpson-Stacey was classified 7th in class at the finish after re-joining the fray, taking the fastest lap.

In the Mini X30 class, debutant Bradley Hardy drove a stellar race as he completed his move up from the Cadet class, with a win over Virtus driver Scott Sumpton, after Sumpton had led the first 5 laps.

Daniel Gale took the JX30 win

Gunning victorious again in Junior Subaru UK

The Junior Subaru UK class visited the Chatham park land circuit for the second time this year, with a very healthy 26 karts lined up for timed practice in the morning. DNL’s Callum Gunning topped the timesheets, from Joe Hunt who was continuing his recent fine form. James Black lined up third with Jonathan Dalton in 4th. Riley Stephenson was only 0.21 behind pole man Gunning but found himself in 5th, James Tomsett was close behind in 6th, with Harvey Roffe, Lewis Berry, Ross Hastings and Poppi Stephenson completing a competitive and close top 10.

True to recent form both Gunning and Stephenson finished in that order in heat 1, with Hunt and Black 3rd and 4th. For the pre Final the top 3 remained the same although the gap from first to second was a little closer, Hunt continued to mix it with the top two and Tomsett moved ahead of Black in 4th and 5th.Tom Emson, Zac Spence, Dalton, Lewie Weaver and Berry secured the top 10 grid for the final which was to be held over 15 laps.

The blue and yellow kart of Gunning led away a clean start which thankfully didn’t involve any of the loading incidents that occurred in the heat and Pre Final, a credit to the 26 amongst the long rumbling 4 stroke snake of karts.  Hunt had started the final strongly, letting the two season long rivals know that he was now joining in the fun. Twice he led during the first half of the race until Gunning and the Clarke kart of Stephenson took control at the front. Stephenson’s recent one lap race pace has been phenomenal and after taking the lap record in the last round at Bayford Meadows he set the fastest lap as he battled with Gunning throughout the second period of the race. A couple of times Stephenson drew level with Gunning, both getting their young elbows out at least once during what was becoming an epic battle. At the finish line just 0.7 seconds, was all that separated the two junior combatants, with Gunning once again just securing the win, Stephenson drawing alongside as they crossed the white stripe. Hunt ran close behind over the final lap in 3rd, waiting to pounce if the two in front tangled. Tomsett came out on top of an earlier dice with Black for 4th, the latter then just losing out to Spence over the last lap when fighting over 5th and 6th. Dalton was in the mix in 7th, as was Emson who also lost out in the frantic last lap kerfuffle to finish 8th. Owen Hizzy and Lewie Weaver were 9th and 10th. Lewis Deacon once again took the plus category.  The next round of the championship moves onto Lydd in two weeks’ time, running alongside the Kent Cup. With Gunning missing the round who will take the fight to the home Clarke Karts of Stephenson and his team mate Josh Pullen?

Callum Gunning (#39) and Riley Stephenson continued their season long duel

Ripley fights his way through to win in Honda Cadet

17 karts lined up for the Honda Cadet final, Britain’s #2 Oliver Bearman lined his Virtus kart up on pole after his Pre Final win with Frank Elwell (Project One) alongside him. Theo Micouris was giving his Tiger Prints teamware livered kart it’s circuit debut in 3rd, buoyed by a recent breakthrough Whilton Mill victory, in 4th Zach Ripley (Evolution) was not to be discounted as he wanted to continue his winning 2017 form. From the start Bearman led away and even managed to pull a gap as the others fought over the second spot. Micouris took up the chase and by mid distance had his #74 kart on the bumper of the #2 leader. Ronnie Mansfield had gone with Micouris but couldn’t live with his pace, as Ripley and Elwell lost touch initially but then caught and passed the #16 of Mansfield. Ripley was now on a charge and managed to peg back the gap to the two leaders, bringing Elwell along with him.

On lap 8 positions at the front changed dramatically as Micouris made his move into hairpin 2 snatching the lead from Bearman, Ripley saw his opportunity too and followed Micouris through as they went through the esses and by the end of the lap had his Evolution kart into the lead. Elwell sniffed a chance of victory at this point and moved past Bearman and Micouris to briefly run 2nd, the four karts now running together in a tight bunch. By lap 10 Ripley and Micouris had now settled into 1st and 2nd places as a little way behind Elwell, Bearman and Mansfield fought hard. As they approached the finish Micouris tried all he knew, just falling short of a pass on the ecstatic Ripley, Bearman had closed back in and was a close 3rd setting fastest lap as he did so, Elwell was 4th from Mansfield in 5th, less than a second covering these 5 after 14 laps tense and exciting laps. 7 seconds back in 6th was Zach Walters, heading another titanic scrap with Declan Russell heading the Project One twins of Oscar Teuten an Archie Walker, in 7th, 8th and 9th. Jai Lawrence completed the top 10.

Zach Ripley survived a tardy start to come through to win in Cadets

Wins for Ayers and Sawhney in Seniors

The lack of entries in the Senior classes led me to believe that most were either on the beach or watching the British GP at Silverstone ! Henry Ayers (P1) won a thrilling battle with Harry Gent (Kpi) to take the X30 honours, the only other class runner Michael Hafford sadly hit problems on the warming up lap. Gent took the fastest lap whilst trying to find away past delighted victor Ayers. Just two karts made it out for the Rotax Max final, Dan O’Brien managed to stay within striking distance of Kartik Sawhney until his chain broke on lap 6, leaving the Ambition driver to take a confidence boosting victory.

Appleby victorious in Junior Max

Oliver Appleby had a good day at the office, overcoming brake problems that he suffered during Saturday testing, to take wins in the heat, Pre Final and main final in his immaculate Kpi run kart. Declan Lee just kept within a second of Appleby to take a fine 2nd from his Project One teammate Jack Steadman in 3rd. Lewis Boret, Sam Sanders, Oscar Lewis and Josh Wellard completed the seven runners, after problems hit Harry Fleming, Harry Canham and a post race exclusion hit Ryan Chapman. Appleby also took the fastest lap.

Oliver Appleby starred in Junior Max to win

Matthews holds on to win in Clubman as Stevens takes IAME class

The Honda Clubman and IAME runners completed the finals and gave us another thriller. All season long there has been nothing to choose between the trio of Jack Matthews, Joseph Knight and Leon Frost, their rivalry growing from race to race. For this weekend it was Kpi’s Jack Matthews turn to take the win, he came from 3rd on the grid to take the lead from DNL’s Knight on lap 5 and then managed to drive superbly, even running side by side with Knight through the esses to hold both him and the Clarke kart of Frost to the finish. Behind the battle for 4th was equally as thrilling, Max Solarski and Macie Hitter fought hard all race until Nathan Marques skillfully pipped them both on the last lap to take the 4th spot. Jack Theobald was 7th behind Solarski and Hitter, Damien Baruss-Haggett and Ian Alexandru Marginean completed the nine runners. The IAME class had three entries, Ella Stevens and Maculey Bishop featured a race long duel to finish in those positions, Jakub Jakoniuk couldn’t quite stay with the leading duo 0.5 seconds back in third.

There is no meeting at Buckmore Park in August, the summer championships resume in September.

Ella Stevens won in IAME

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Kent Championships entertain at Buckmore Park

Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championships Round 2

A sunny and warm Buckmore Park played host to round 2 of the BPKC summer championships, incorporating round 3 of the increasingly popular Kent kart Championships, the first of two visits this year for the county wide series. A bumper entry filled the paddock and kept the keen Buckmore Park staff on their toes all day.

Emily Linscott loses her chain, James Popple spins and Josh Pullen takes avoiding action


The Bambino class for the diminutive youngsters kicked off the finals, with the 11 entries having had two timed runs beforehand. Archie Clark topped the timing sheets in all three of the runs, with his fastest lap topping out each of the three timing sectors in the final. Just 0.280 seconds behind was Eden Spanswick in 2nd place, Freddie Duncan filled the podium positions in third, within a second of the fastest time set by Archie. Novice driver Mason Bishop was 4th, ahead of Lewis Islin and Archie’s brother Benjamin Clark in 5th & 6th. Rounding out the positions in the final were Alexi Sorial, Laith Khan, Sonny Mortensen, Kobe Taylor and Kristian Stefanov.

Archie Clark proved unbeatable in the Bambino class

Honda Cadet

In the Honda Cadet final three drivers managed to break clear of the pack, these were led by local star Zach Ripley, with Frank Elwell and Zach Walters in his tow. Walters and Elwell traded places early on, with the latter Elwell putting his Project One kart in the lead on lap 9, before Ripley claimed the position back. Walters driving for Ambition hung on tight to Elwell and this paid off when the Project One driver received a dropped nose 10 second penalty post race. Ripley’s Evolution kart managed to pull a slight gap at the finish after 12 laps over 2nd place on the road Elwell, who ended up 12th after his penalty was enforced. Behind 2nd placed Walters, was a huge battle going on with the majority of the remaining field fighting for the remaining positions, coming out top in what would be the fight for the last podium spot, was Archie Walker – he had literally come from nowhere, making up 12 spots during the race, setting the fastest lap in doing so. Ronnie Mansfield was completely off the track in his endeavour to pass the flying Walker approaching the flag having to settle for 4th. The remaining pack finished in the order of Ryan Willis, Oscar Teuten, Declan Russell, a delayed Liam McNeilly in 8th, Mitchell Gibbons 9th and Louis Horsley completing the top 10.

Zach Ripley led home a close Cadet field

Junior Max

A healthy grid of 18 karts lined up for the Junior Max final up next. Project One’s Declan Lee continued to show his pace over one lap with the fastest time in timed practice, however come the heat and Pre final, it was KPi’s Oliver Appleby who proved the dominant teenager, by taking wins in both. He led away the final too and looked in control comfortably building up a lead in his immaculately turned out blue kart. Behind him Ben Fayers had looked ready to take up the challenge until he fell back behind Sean Berry. Another fast mover early on in the race was Thomas Rotherham, he had been penalised in the first heat and had felt that this was unjust. Starting from 6th (where he finished after starting from the back of the grid in the Pre final), he surged his LICA kart initially past Thomas Lawson and Mason Ruff over a single lap, before then setting off after the Project One kart of Fayers, passing him on the 9th lap. Back at the front Appleby was losing pace, allowing Berry to home in onto his bumper, failing just short of making a move by a mere 0.11 seconds at the finish. Another lap and things might have been different admitted the winner post race, Berry had been keen to respond to his disappointment the last time out at Lydd, when he lost the win on the final lap. Rotherham set the fastest lap during his charge and was just 1.79 seconds behind after 14 laps. Fayer was comfortable in 4th while behind him a train of karts ran together. Ruff held on to 5th, closely followed by early fastest qualifier Lee, Max Goodwin was 7th, Thomas Lawson slipped to 8th, Jake Kolosowski was 9th and Josh Wellard rounded out the top 10.

Oliver Appleby flew in Junior Max

Junior Subaru UK

The popular Junior Subaru UK championship arrived at Buckmore Park with a bumper 27 kart entry, making it the joint largest class of the day. With the championship battle now starting to take shape, it was important for title protagonists to keep hauling in the big points as we head into the summer months. Callum Gunning and Riley Stephenson finished 1st & 2nd in the first heat, with Zac Spence in close attendance. They then lined up on the front row for the Pre final. Gunning starting from the pole reacted slightly slower to the start light which gave the Clarke Kart of Stephenson a slight edge on the run down to the right handed first turn. The two ran side by side along the straight both trying to guess each other’s next move. Stephenson then decided to come across to hit the apex, thinking that he was clear and possibly worried that if he let the DNL kart go, another competitor would follow him through, leaving him out in the marbles. His actions however put Gunning into the inside barrier, heavily damaging his kart and possible championship hopes. The clash did delay Stephenson dropping him down to 9th, although he eventually recovered well to third, behind were Zac Spence and Owen Hizzey. A post race report into the incident filed by the observer at the first corner, decided not to penalise Stephenson for his move on Gunning, which left the Herne Bay driver Gunning distraught. For the final Gunning would now start last and have to fight his way through.

The Junior Subaru UK Pre final lines up

A clean start saw Spence’s Ambition kart pull clear of first Hizzey and then Stephenson, who closed up onto the #32 kart of Spence. These two then fought a race long duel exchanging the lead and pulling clear of Hizzey, James’s Black and Thomsett. At the mid race point Spence had the lead only for Stephenson to claim it back on lap 10 of 15, Spence seemed incensed by this waving his arm at the officials as he crossed the line and try as he might could not snatch the lead back from the Clarke kart over the remaining laps, finishing nailed to Stephenson’s rear bumper. The snarling pack behind had closed up onto the lead battle and places swapped repeatedly throughout the race. Owen Hizzey eventually won the intense fight for 3rd, James Thomsett had a stellar drive to 4th, Emily Linscott overcome a thrown chain in qualifying leaving her last, to move through to 5th, in front of her sparring partner Black in 6th, who was complaining about a lack of grunt up the hill after running third for a spell. 7th to 10th places were filled by Tom Emson, top novice Jonathan Dalton, Lewie Weaver and Leon Clark. Gunning had a fraught final after initially recovering well, but then finding himself involved in another incident which lost him places collecting a dropped nose penalty along the way, a day to forget and championship chances damaged. The plus class was won by Lewis Deacon with fastest lap going to the unlucky Gunning.

Honda Clubman & IAME

Another close final was enacted in the Clubman class with Leon Frost, Jai Lawrence and Jack Matthews taking turns at the front of a very close train of karts. Frost managed to hit the front on lap 7 and then hold off his attackers until the chequered flag in his Clarke kart, Matthews was having a much improved weekend over last month’s event, proving very competitive in his KPi kart as he pushed the celebrating Frost over the finish line. Craig Morgan and Joseph Knight were in the fight finishing 3rd and 4th, with Lawrence finishing 5th, Maksymilian Solarski was 6th from top novice Macie Hitter 7th, Nathan Marques 8th, Jack Theobald 9th and Christopher Doble in 10th. Macauley Bishop took the fastest lap on his way to cross the line first in the IAME class, but unfortunately picked up a dropped nose penalty, therefore handing the win to 303 Squadron’s Jakub Jakoniuk.

Senior Max

Matching the Junior Subaru entry with an impressive 27 entries was the Rotax Max class. For this round of the Kent Championship the drivers raced to the BPKC format of 3 heats and a final format, as opposed to the usual qualifying, heat Pre final – Grand final format, a popular choice with the drivers as it really gave them chance to test their racing skills. Charlie Turner and Championship leader Jack Mayle made it through the heats to start from the front row in the final, Lewis Ridd and Lewis Brown lining up behind them. Turner led away Mayle, with Ridd and circuit champion Elliot Rice 4th. As the race settled down Mayle closed in on Turner, who was relieved to be over his Saturday testing troubles, on lap 10 of 12 Mayle made his move and looked to keeping his 100% Kent Championship record in tact, Turner however saw a chance into Paddock bend, upon seeing a gap he pounced, squeezing his kart down the inside of Mayle, holding on through Garda and the run up the hill, to take the win after what had been a dramatic final lap. Ridd just lost out to Sam Baker over the closing laps but was still very happy with his 4th place. Baker driving for GMS had made up 4 places to finish a fine 3rd, proving best of the circuit regulars. Lewis Brown finished 5th, Kit Brough 6th, Liam Carter 7th. Harry Gent moved up a staggering 12 places to finish 8th, a fine effort in what was a very competitive grid. Rice’s hobbled kart slipped to a disappointing 9th after putting in the fastest lap early on, from Bobby Grove 10th.

Charlie Turner #5 topped the large Senior Max contingent

Mini and Junior X30

The Mini and Junior X30 classes shared the same final due to the lower entries in the respective classes. Freddy Simpson-Stacey dominated the JX30 class all day in his Evolution kart, driving serenely in the final to take the victory. Alfie Prince finished 3.13 seconds behind with Daniel Gale close behind in 3rd. Alfie Glenie had a tough day as did one or two others in the class, by finishing 4th on the road after a first lap skirmish, but then received a drop nose 10 second penalty, relegating him to 9th overall, he did however secure the fastest lap. Alfie Brookes inherited 4th from Glenie after surviving attacks from behind throughout the race. Ben Cowley took 5th, Alexander Moody 6th, Rupert Flynn 7th and a battle scarred (after first lap contact with Glenie) Finlay Cross 8th.

In the Mini X30 class Charlie Typaldo-Cole overcame a troubled build up to win convincingly from Kristian Brookes, Frankie Taylor and Peter Knight.

Charlie Typaldo-Cole finished first In MX30
Freddy Simpson-Stacey won the JX30 class

Senior X30 & Rotax 177

Also sharing their finals were the Senior X30 and Rotax 177 classes. Charlie Bennett (debuting a new crash helmet) made a welcome return to Buckmore Park and marked the occasion by taking the X30 win, cruising to victory over his Project One teammate Henry Ayers, who had managed to pass Jenson Harvey’s Evolution kart and close to within 0.68 of Bennett at the finish, taking the fastest lap as he did so. Michael Hafford continued his learning experience finishing some way behind Harvey in 4th, the last of the runners.

Buster Mepham comfortably led home Novice Michael Kemsley in the 177 class after Jamie McGeoghan retired after 6 laps, Karl Mepham failed to make the start.

X30 Winner Charlie Bennett heads teammate Henry Ayers
Buster Mepham, 1st in 177s

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championship Round 1 Report

Close racing in every class as the summer championship begins

BPKC’s summer championship began on Easter Sunday at the Chatham circuit and with the predicted rain absent, the competitors enjoyed some tremendously close racing.

With the Cadet ‘0’ plate Festival event coming up in just two weeks’ time, this was the last chance for the teams and drivers in the Honda and IAME classes, to fine tune their karts settings, to the fast and undulating circuit.

Ripley takes the Honda 0 plate warm up

Lucas Ellingham had looked one of the favourites for the Honda Cadet final, with wins in both the heat and pre final. Indeed he led the 12 lap final from the front of the 26 kart grid up until the 7th lap, when Aston Millar made a bid for race honours bringing Zach Ripley through with him. Ripley took the lead on lap 10 as Millar and Ellingham were caught up in the frenetic dash to the flag. Alfie Rigby had latched onto the local driver Ripley’s bumper and the two pulled a small gap over their pursuers, which they held onto the finish. Archie Brown finished where he had started in third, somehow coming out in front of a very close group of hungry drivers as they crossed the finish line. Millar was 4th, with Archie Walker making up two spots over his grid position to finish a fine 5th, Oliver Gray was very close behind in 6th, with a disappointed Ellingham in 7th, just two tenths covered 3rd to 7th places. Liam McNeilly, Declan Russell and Jack Clements round out the top ten. Winner Zach Ripley whipped his Evolution run kart around to the fastest lap on his way to victory and now sets himself up as the man to beat in the upcoming ‘0’ plate event.

Maksymillian Solarski driving for the 303 squadron took the Clubman class win from Jack Theobald, Amy Brunton and Macie Hitter, Jack Matthews and Jai Lawrence ended their race in a first hairpin incident involving several other karts.

Zach Ripley came through to win the Honda Cadet final

Appleby turns his day around with an empathic win in Junior Max

In the Junior class Oliver Appleby (KPi) almost had a day to forget, after picking up a front fairing penalty in the heat and then suffering an incident in the pre final, which dropped him to the back, before recovering to third place behind the two Project One karts of Ben Fayers and Henry Ayers. Things went to plan in the final however for the Essex lad, as he fought his way through to head the final after 2 laps. The Project One pairing could not live with the superbly driven KPi kart finishing 1.7 seconds behind after 14 laps, Ayers finishing in front of the fast starting Fayers. William Newham finished 4th after Ryan Chapman retired and Joshua Wellard recovered well too, from a low grid slot (due to a nose drop penalty in the pre final) to place 5th, Lewis Boret finished 6th. Winner Appleby secured the fastest lap on the fourth tour.

Oliver Appleby won in Junior Max after early set backs

Barnard dominates the day in IAME Cadets

A large grid of 20 karts lined up for the IAME Cadet final. Two drivers had dominated the qualifying races -Taylor Barnard and Matthew Rees. This was then repeated in the final itself when Barnard held the lead for every lap except on lap 10, when Rees did manage to find a way past the #7 kart of Barnard, but the latter reclaimed the premier position back on the next lap holding off Rees of to the chequered flag taking the win. Behind these two a titanic battle was going on for the final podium position. Alex Dunne and Maxwell Dodds swapped 3rd place until late in the race when Dunne slipped back to an eventual 7th, this after nose drop penalties were enforced on others. Dodds secured the third spot, just from Oliver Gray and Archie Mace in 4th and 5th.Arvid Lindblad finished sixth in front of Dunne, Freddie Slater, Christopher Draper and Sam Shaw completing the top 10. The fastest lap was taken by the winner Taylor Barnard.

Taylor Barnard and Matthew Rees broke clear in the IAME final

TKMs return to produce a thriller

For this month the club had a visit from the TKM Extreme class and they provided a very competitive and close final. Contact on the first lap at hairpin 1, forced Lucas Sullivan and Daniel Burgess out, with James Buckingham delayed. At the front Owain Rosser, Peter Newman and Alex Rees fought amongst themselves over first place, displaying some excellent race craft and close action. After a fraught 13 laps of classic TKM racing, it was Newman who took the win from Rosser, with Rees and William Lakin close behind in 3rd and 4th, less than a second covering the four. Matthew Ayres was 5th, from Curtis Grainger, novice Rob Aston, Lewis Bickers and the delayed Buckingham. The fastest lap went on lap 3 to Alex Rees.

The TKM Extreme final at the first hairpin

Prince takes JX30 win for Ambition, while Brookes wins in MX30 for Evolution

The Junior and Mini X30 class finals were combined and both provided great action packed races. In the Junior X30 class, Freddy Simpson-Stacey, Daniel Gale and Alfie Prince took turns in leading and it was really hard to pick a winner from the trio, Rupert Flynn was close by waiting to pick up any pieces from the battling three. On lap 11 contact out of my sight down at the bottom of the circuit between the leaders Gale and Simpson-Stacey, saw the race take a dramatic turn, as Gale crossed the line with his rear bumper hanging off and Simpson-Stacey with hefty damage to his nose fairing. Gale received a black flag for the damage to his kart, his race over. Prince took full advantage of the incident and regained the lead from Simpson-Stacey, then pushing on to take a delighted win in his Ambition run kart. Flynn had closed up to finish 2nd with the damaged Evolution kart of Simpson-Stacey taking a nose drop penalty in 3rd, the only other class runner Archie Garlic went out with a hefty collision after 6 laps. Gale took some recompense with the fastest lap before his retirement.

Alfie Prince won an eventful JX30 final

In the Mini X30 class it was Evolution versus Ambition again with a fast starting Kristian Brookes tussling with Charlie Typaldo-Cole throughout, Fraser Bunton was in close attendance after leading a lap early on. The three crossed the line with Brookes being at the front when it mattered taking the win, on his bumper was Typaldo-Cole and Brunton after an enthralling race. Frankie Taylor and Nooris Gafoor finished 4th and 5th.

Kristian Brookes won a close fought Mini X30 final

Nail-biting final goes the way of Brown in Rotax, while Gent breaks the outright circuit record in X30

The Seniors ended the day with their final. In the Rotax class Lewis Brown driving his blue GMS Wildkart fought off the close attentions of Kit Brough in his privately run well sorted Kosmic Kart for the full 12 laps, Brough just failing to find a way past the consistent Brown. Lewis Ridd couldn’t live with the two circuit regulars in front but he had his hands full trying to fend off the challenges of both Robert Springate and Max Read, finishing in those positions. Novice Drew Holmes was the remaining Rotax runner in 6th, just three seconds behind the battle for 3rd. The X30 class fell apart in early in the day with novice Michael Hafford hitting starter motor gremlins and James Hills also non-starting the final. This left an on fire Harry Gent to enjoy an extended test session as he brought himself up onto the back of the battle for Rotax 3rd place to cement the class win.Gent in his KPi kart had broken the outright lap record (38.760) during his first heat, proving that he and his Dad had his set up absolutely spot on, this they can no doubt take away for their upcoming races.

Lewis Brown held off Kit Brough to win in Rotax Max

That ended a day of great racing in every class, karting at its best slickly run by the BPKC. Next up are the ABkC ’0’ plate Cadet festival over the weekend of April 28/29th, followed then by the Kent Championships, which make their appearance at the circuit on May 21st.

Harry Gent broke the outright circuit record in Senior X30

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Buckmore Park Kart Club Winter Series Round 2 Report

On track action kicks off Buckmore Park’s year

With the first round of the winter series cancelled in January due to stubborn ice on the circuit, 160+ competitors gathered for round two, this time to more spring like weather settled over the Chatham park land circuit.

With the annual SuperOne championship visit being held in April this year, along with the Cadet O plate Festival a week later – the paddock was full, with many teams and drivers making early preparations for the upcoming events.

JAG backing brought a big Junior Rotax grid
JAG backing brought a big Junior Rotax grid

Baruss-Haggett wins Bambino class

Seven young Bambino drives were entered but only six took part around the undulating circuit; Bambino’s do not conduct heats and a final instead they have time trials and score points which are collated at the end. The driver with the most points is the round winner. The final run included three young chargers battling together on the circuit and proved that even at such a young age, their special awareness and control was a joy to see. Joseph Katsantonis, Damian Baruss-Haggett and Lewis Islin were the ones to watch in the final run with the trio finishing in that order. However, Baruss-Haggett scored the most points over the day making him a deserved winner. Eden Spanswick-Smith and big Lewis Hamilton fan – Freddie Duncan were also present as was Alexi Sorial. With Sean Butcher (former Bambino racer) winning in Junior X30, we look to the likes of Baruss-Haggett to be the next stars of the Cadet and Junior classes.

Damian Baruss-Haggett leads eventual Bambino final winner Joseph Katsantonis
Damian Baruss-Haggett was chased hard by Joseph Katsantonis all day

Mini wins for Ley and Lloyd

The Mini X30 & Max classes combined for their events, in the X30 class Alex Ley (DKR) had an edge over the rest of the entries all day long and was a clear winner in the final, although Kristian Brookes was the only other finisher, with Fraser Brunton and Nooris Gafoor incurring problems.

Alex Ley dominated the Mini X30 class
Alex Ley dominated the Mini X30 class

In the Max class the 11 entries put on a much more competitive display, with DHRs Alex Lloyd coming out on top some 6 seconds in front of an excellent dice between Lewis Gilbert, Sam Heading, Dominic Bush, Alex Eades, Van Knapton and Kai Hunter. Gilbert and Heading swapped positions throughout, neither being able to break away from the pack and close in on Lloyd. The positions at the finish were as above, with Lloyd looking completely in control at the chequered flag.

Alex Lloyd drove it like he stole it to win the Mini Max class comfortably
Alex Lloyd drove it like he stole it to win the Mini Max class comfortably

Ravenscroft narrowly defeats Chesterton in Junior Max

As this event was round 2 of the 4 round JAG Winter Rotax Tour, entries were up in all Rotax classes, this was most evident in the Junior class, with an excellent 25 kart entry for Sunday’s meeting. The final entertained us with a cracking race between Tyler Chesterton and Clayton Ravenscroft, with the latter overcoming an early advantage that Chesterton had built up and then capitalising on the extra minute that was added to the race distance at the race’s end, by taking the win. Ravenscroft was a mere 0.16 seconds ahead of Chesterton after just over 9 minutes of racing. Nearly 3 seconds behind these two, Tommy Foster secured 3rd, from circuit regular Oliver Appleby in 4th, he had put on a good performance in his blue KPi kart up against some of this year’s S1 favourites. Tooley’s Kieron Jermey was hot on his tail in 5th and Bradley Barrett completed the top 6.

Clayton Ravenscroft took the Junior Max honours in after hours
Clayton Ravenscroft took the Junior Max honours in after hours

Rowledge takes IAME Cadet win

IAME Cadet grid was also up this month, due to the upcoming S1 and O plate events. Joshua Rowledge topped the 21 karts finishing 0.2 seconds in front of Christopher Draper and Samuel Shaw in 2nd and 3rd. Aston Millar who was one of those doubling up in Honda cadets, finished 4th from Rashan Chigorimbo 5th and Luke Watts in 6th. The fastest lap came from Craig Morgan who finished back in 10th, proving the depth of competitiveness in the colourful class.

IAME grid rolls up to the startline
IAME grid rolls up to the startline

Knight capitalises on first lap chaos in Clubmans

The Kartstore sponsored Honda Clubman class only featured six entries for this month, although they only raced against each other alone in the final: for their qualifying, heats and pre final they were mixed amongst the Cadet entries. Joseph Knight led away the slim field and then down at the first hairpin we lost two drivers due to spins, both the DNL karts of pole man Joshua Hoy and Ben Whitham pirouetted, losing seconds to their rivals. Knight made the most of the chaos behind by stretching out a lead in his DNL kart,  over a good race between novice Jai Lawrence and Jack Matthews. As the race progressed Hoy was recovering well from his first lap spin and setting fastest laps along the way, by the closing laps he had caught the battle for second place giving us a grandstand finish. As they came up the hill for the final time Knight had a 2.88 second victory margin over Hoy, who had passed both Lawrence and Matthews to take 2nd, Matthews finished clear of Lawrence in 3rd. Whitham wasn’t far behind Lawrence at the finish in 5th and novice Macie Hitter finished 6th.

Joseph Knight won in Honda Clubman
Joseph Knight won in Honda Clubman

Bennett blasts away opposition in X30

The Seniors were up next and due to time restrictions which were brought about by a timing delay earlier in the day, the X30 class mixed in with the Rotax Max runners. Charlie Bennett used his circuit knowledge and experience to great effect by dominating the X30 class, his Project One kart securing fastest lap on his way to a 3.3 second win over Derek Morgan. It would be great to see young Bennett go up against the country’s elite in the S1 series this year, after showing such promising pace. Morgan finished less than half a second in front of Rory Smith in 3rd. A little way further back in 4th was Samuel Cromwell, Charlie Lamb was 5th from the KPi pairing of Harry Gent and Emily Rogers.

Senior X30 start
Senior X30 start

Turner wins in Rotax Max

In the Rotax class the race for honours was between Myles Apps and Charlie Turner. Turner eventually managed to pass and secure the win over Apps. Behind Kit Brough came out on top over a good race for the final podium place, he had Lewis Brown and Sam Baker for close company race long, carrying on from where they left off last year in the class. Behind Baker in 5th was Joe Bleackley in 6th.

Charlie Turner pipped Myles Apps to the Senior Max win
Charlie Turner pipped Myles Apps to the Senior Max win

Buckmore’s ex Bambino wins in Junior X30

After the morning’s Junior X30 qualifying session, circuit expert Luke Whitehead sat on pole but, it all went horribly wrong for him on the dummy grid for the first heat as the green flag dropped. Inexplicably his IAME engine in his KPi run Fullerton kart refused to fire up, leaving him sat perplexed while the rest of the 17 kart grid left him in a cloud of 2 stroke smoke! By the time his Dad had helped to coax the recalcitrant machine into life, the rest of the field were nearly at the completion of their warming up lap. His subsequent storming drive from 17th up to 5th was one of the highlights of the day.


For the final DKR’s Dragan Pinsent sat on pole, he had had a terrific fight with Jonny Wilkinson in the Pre Final and led the final away in the early laps, Wilkinson slotted in behind Sean Butcher in 3rd with Whitehead initially slipping from a 4th starting grid to 6th. Butcher looked fast early on and shadowed Pinsent with Wilkinson not far behind, Whitehead had found a way past Louie Short and Freddy Stacey-Simpson up to 4th and was setting purple lap times. Butcher then found a gap in Pinsent’s defences and slipped past to take the lead, Pinsent then without warning, peeled off and headed down the pit lane, apparently with fuel spraying up onto his crash helmet; his chance of the win had literally evaporated. Butcher then led Wilkinson who was now becoming a serious threat, as was fastest man on the track – Whitehead. Going into the last lap there was nothing between the trio and at the finish line MBR kart of Butcher took the win, Whitehead had one last lunge over the kerbs to try and pass Wilkinson, but just failed, just 0.5 seconds covered the three at the finish. It was remarkable win for Butcher after having two years out of the seat, the ex Buckmore Park Bambino driver was naturally delighted.  Behind the tense fight for the win Dylan Cooper took a fine 4th from Short in 5th, he too had had a stellar drive. Freddy Stacey-Simpson rounded out the top 6 and Whitehead secured the fastest lap.

From Bambino to JX30 win at Buckmore Park for Sean Butcher behind Whitehead tries to pass Wilkinson
From Bambino to JX30 win at Buckmore Park for Sean Butcher behind Whitehead tries to pass Wilkinson

Bearman continues to win in Honda Cadets

With 53 entries the Honda Cadet class was by far the largest of the day. Sebastian Bloch proved the fastest of all in qualifying during the morning, which was split into two groups. Unfortunately for those in the first group, the circuit was still damp up at the top part of track, which affected their intermediate tyres more than the second group. There then followed a lot of deliberation between competitors and officials regarding the difference in the sessions and how the heat grids should be decided. With some feeling strongly that the eventual outcome was unjust, the heats went ahead, after what had been a lengthy delay, with the wins going to Josh Irfan and Frankie Elwell. There then followed two Pre Finals of which were won by Oliver Bearman and Alfie Rigby.

A ‘B’ final was required due the huge numbers with the top 4 progressing through to the A final. This was won by Archie Brown, with Khali Atkins 2nd, Liam McNeilly 3rd and Jack Steadman 4th.Heat winner Irfan lost out the most by suffering a scary looking roll on the warming up lap of his PreFinal, he managed to climb up 12 places to 12th in the B final.

In the now fading light the A final began over 10 laps, amazingly last year’s 0 plate winner Bearman managed to lead the 28 karts for every one of it’s laps, this under intense pressure in his Virtus kart, therefore continuing his excellent start to his 2017 campaign in the Honda class. Behind him the usual Cadet mayhem was ensuing. Alfie Rigby held down 2nd place from Oliver Gray for 5 laps and then from Joshua McLean, until McLean slipped past bringing a charging Oliver Greenall with him. Starting the last lap Greenall had moved his Evolution kart onto the bumper of Bearman, with a huge colourful snaking train of karts behind the leading pair. Over the last lap out of my sight however, Lucas Ellingham managed to jump from 6th to 2nd, with Greenall slipping to a lowly 21st, Ivan Lomliev took 3rd from Ambition’s Bloch in 4th, Frankie Elwell took 5th from Alfie Rigby, Oliver Gray, Theo Micouris, Aston Millar and Max Herbert completing the top 10. McLean took the fastest lap during his early chase of Bearman.

As a prelude to the SuperOne visit and the 0 plate meeting in April, this had proven to us that Oliver Bearman is the man to beat, even when some of those behind him had been setting faster lap times. The other 52 keen young drivers just need to work out how to stop him!

Oliver Bearman heads a huge field of Cadets on his way to winning
Oliver Bearman heads a huge field of Cadets on his way to winning

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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Buckmore Park Kart Club Summer Championships Round 8 Report

Double points bonanza finale at the ‘Circuit of the Year ‘.

The final round of the BPKC kart championships were held at the recently awarded outdoor kart circuit of the year, by a poll of public votes on the Karting Magazine website and double points were on offer for those competitors who braved the chilly December weather.

Nine excitable Bambino competitors tore around the Chatham circuit for their timed run final, with Archie Clark bagging the fastest lap to take the honours, close behind was Macauley Bishop, Freddie Housley, Zac Drummond, Joe Lewis, Lewis Wherrell, Oliver Poole, Kacper Tomalewski and Archie’s brother Benjamin.

Damp conditions made the morning heats interesting
Damp conditions made the morning heats interesting

Bearman bounces back with a win in Honda Cadets

After the Bambinos were the older excitable youngsters driving in the Honda Cadets class, featuring a very healthy 28 kart grid. Virtus pilot Oliver Bearman was back on form after an off day last month, controlling the race from the front, not putting a foot wrong throughout the 12 lap duration. He was shadowed initially by his teammate Theo Micouris, until Archie Brown took over the chase ending up on his bumper as they crossed the finish line. Indeed there was a gaggle of 5 hungry youngsters separated by less than a second behind Britain’s number 2 Bearman. As they flashed across the line the order behind runner up Brown was Coskun Irfan, Ivan Lomliev, Micouris and Sebastian Bloch. Highest climber during the final was Oliver Greenall, up 12 places to 15th at the finish after starting last, Theo Micouris took the fastest lap. In taking the double points win Bearman, also secured the BPKC Cadet championship from DNL driver Callum Gunning who finished in 10th place and Bloch in third.

Oliver Bearman leads teammate Theo Micouris early in the Honda Cadet final
Oliver Bearman leads teammate Theo Micouris early in the Honda Cadet final

Porter defeats champion Foster for JX30 win

The Junior X30 class is beginning to gather pace at Buckmore Park, with 11 entered in the program for this month. This allowed them to race as one class all day giving us some fast and at times noisy racing! Morgan Porter made up for finishing 2nd last month by taking a narrow win over new BPKC champion – Ronnie Foster, who’s luck and kart held together this month. Finishing 3rd in the race and runner up in the championship was current Kent champion – Alfie Glenie, backing up his Evolution teammate by finishing 3 seconds behind.  Ambition’s Alfie Prince took a good 4th after a close dice with Jack Johns in 5th and his Ambition teammate Finley Cross 6th, who had looked comfortable in 4th earlier in the race. Bobby Grove had been embroiled with this dice and as high as 5th with two to go, only to slip to 7th at the finish. Race winner Morgan Porter showed his consistency with the fastest lap on his penultimate tour. The final top 3 in the championship were Foster, Glenie and Cross.

Ronnie Foster headed home teammate Fr
Ronnie Foster 

Wharrier wins for Project One in Junior Max

Project One drivers have always been to the fore of the Junior Rotax class at Buckmore Park and Sunday’s final carried on the trend with James Wharrier coming out on top of the 10 drivers. He led throughout looking very comfortable once his teammate Ben Fayers had slipped back with a misfiring engine. Things might have been different though if Oliver Appleby (KPi) had started further up the grid from the beginning. Appleby loves to charge through the field and after a heat penalty found himself with work to do. He set the fastest lap on his way to 2nd place and managed to trim Wharrier’s margin of victory to 0.73 seconds. Last month’s winner Harry Ayers, made it a Project One – 1,3 & 4 with a solid 3rd place behind Appleby. Conrad Collinson (5th) and Thomas Rotherham (6th) had mixed days, both showing good pace but finding themselves at the wrong end of the top 6 at the finish. The final championship positions were Appleby, Collinson and William Newnham.

BPKC Mini Max champ Wharrier won in Junior Max
BPKC Mini Max champ Wharrier won in Junior Max

Heading takes debut Mini Max win

The three Mini Max runners ran with the faster Junior karts with the trio showing a surprising turn of speed against the faster karts. Former double Cadet champion Sam Heading shadowed the Project One kart of Oliver Marsh until he eventually found a way past the Bose backed driver. Sam and his mechanic/engineer Dean ‘the machine’ Meyer, proving that they are coming to grips with their move into the Mini Max class. Marsh didn’t let Heading out of his sight and impressively held the gap to less than a second at the finish. KPi’s Josh Wellard is also showing that he is coming to grips with the class jump, by running with the two ahead until he became caught up with two of the Junior drivers, who were having their own private battle. It was still a good fighting performance for the local lad, which he can take into the 2017 season. The final championship positions confirmed James Wharrier as the winner, Wellard 2nd and Marsh in 3rd.

Sam Heading took his maiden Mini Max win
Sam Heading took his maiden Mini Max win

Brooks ends his season in style while teammates clash behind

The Clubman Honda entries appear to be on the wane at Buckmore Park with many moving onto the full Cadet class or Mini Max, only eight karts had entered for this month’s final; however the lack in quantity didn’t have much effect on the quality of the racing. Joseph Knight lead the field away in his DNL kart, leading until lap 4 when the inevitable attack from this year’s class standout driver Alfie Brooks began. The already confirmed class champion Brooks dug in and soon pulled away from firstly Evolution’s Declan Russell and then another DNL driver Joshua Hoy. A lap later Knight had fought back behind Hoy and made his move at the first hairpin, the move down the inside led to an unfortunate clash between the two teammates delaying both, with Hoy affected the worse, slipping back and losing the tow to the three ahead. Brooks cruised to victory, with Knight finishing 2nd (in the race and championship) and Russell running in tandem 1.18 seconds behind him. Hoy was crestfallen in 4th stymied by the earlier clash, although he was pleased to learn that he had secured 3rd in the overall championship later. Ambition novice Harrison Crowther impressed with 5th from DNL’s Benjamin Whitham and an unfortunate Jack Matthews(KPi), who had everything seemingly go against him. Spare a thought for Jamie Perilly who had his throttle cable snap on the grid at the start, wasting two days of testing and preparation in an instant and falling from 2nd to 5th in the championship! Declan Russell took the fastest lap on lap 11 and 6th in the final championship standings.

Brooks takes his second 2016 championship win
Brooks takes his second 2016 championship win

Bearman doubles up in IAME Cadets

The IAME Cadet class ran with the Clubmans during the heat and Pre final but had their own final to end the day. That man Oliver Bearman was back out after his win in the Honda final  and he once again led every lap, this after losing a clutch during the morning qualifying heat, which had left him starting the Prefinal (which he won!) from the back. Bearman took his second final win of the day from Aston Millar, Samuel Shaw, Matthew Rees, Rashan Chigorimbo and Vinnie Phillips, who rounded out the top 6. Samuel Shaw took the fastest lap. The end of season championship positions had Millar on top, with Jacob Baldry 2nd and Vinnie Phillips in 3rd.

IAME grid with Bearman (85) and Millar on the front row
IAME grid with Bearman (85) and Millar on the front row

Rice seals win with a kiss in Senior Rotax

The last race of the day was for the Senior Rotax and X30 competitors. Last years champion Elliot Rice topped the table going into the final round and after a recent run of difficult races, put in a champions drive . He pulled a gap from the start and then controlled the pace, even setting his fastest lap after he had backed off to save his kart from any possible kerb damage. Seeing Elliot blowing kisses as he crossed the finish line, showed how much winning back to back championships meant to him! Sam Baker returned to earlier season form by managing to pass recent double winner Kit Brough mid race and taking the runner up spot. Lewis Brown was 4th, top novice Rory Pye 5th and James Freeman 6th. Behind Rice in the championship standings were Brown, Baker, Brough and Mike Ashby.

Rice blows kisses as he wins the Senior Rotax final
Rice blows kisses as he wins the Senior Rotax final

Bennett moves class and takes the victory in X30

Charlie Bennett dominated in X30s after a recent move across from the Rotax class, also managing the overall fastest lap. Jack Leese was 2nd in class with Chris Bridle in 3rd, Callum Hopcutt and Edward Bridle managing to keep apart after an earlier hefty clash, in 4th and 5th. Chris Bridle took the overall championship win from sibling rival Edward, the absent Emily Rogers finishing 3rd.

The 2016 BPKC final championship standings can be found at this link –

Chris Bridle secured the BPKC X30 Championship
Chris Bridle secured the BPKC X30 Championship

Report and images courtesy of Paul Babington


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