After the championships inception in 2012 The EKL has always boast some of the UK’s biggest grids on the arrive and drive scene. With 2016 the 5th year this looks like a trend that will continue with teams based nationwide coming together to compete for the national championship.
The format is a fantastic way of testing everyone’s strengths and even their weaknesses. Each event starts with an hour practice then moving into twelve ten lap heats. Once completion of the heats the Race of Champions takes place with an opportunity for the top three teams to win cash prizes. Each event ends with a two hour endurance event.
Looking ahead to the 2016 season I have picked my 5 teams to watch how could all be competing for top honours.
The Favourites – Titan Motorsport
Titan Motorsport have always been the leading team from the beginning of the EKL. The team is managed by one of its original founders in 1994 Martin O’Neill. Martin has overseen the dominance of Titan in the EKL with the driver line up lead by his 2 sons Jack and Andy O’Neill. Along with their ventures in the EKL they also have Club100 podiums too their name showing how well they work together.
The New Boys – Leicester Lightning
Leicester are a newly former team for 2016 and are able to boast a fantastically strong driver line up. Firstly Alex Harding who over the last three years has been a front runner in the Covkartsport Lightweight class. Kallum Jones joins the team as a bit of an unknown quantity, although regular championship contender at Sutton Circuit championships and previous TKM experience he is unknown to the arrive and drive national community. Neil Vincent and Mark Bramford complete the line up both with extremely strong racing CV’s boasting Covkartsport Lightweight and Lightweight Plus championships respectively.
Girl Power – Northampton Maidens
The original all female team in the EKL have always been on of the toughest to beat in the championship. Lead by former Club100 front runner Stephanie Walters who certainly leads by example by whenever she is in the kart demonstrating pure speed and fantastic race craft. With the back of another Club100 front runner Rhianna Purcocks and BUKC regular Kayleigh Vincent the team will be hoping the bad luck that has hampered them at times in previous years is at an end and 2016 could be their most successful yet.
Stinging Quality – Newmarket Hornets
The Hornets a team formed by Carl Vela have had some brilliant success in the last few years with their crowning glory being last year when they won the EPEC Hire Class championship. They have also managed to secure silverware at Le Man and British 24 hour races. The teams main driver would be Kyle Power who’s stock in the countries arrive and drive scene is rising all the time, not only a regular championship contender at his local circuit Red Lodge he was also on the podium in the OEKC recently at Whilton Mill. Last year in EKL the Hornets finished 7th which was their highest ever finish in the championship, this year they will without doubt be looking to improve on that.
The New Knights – Northampton Knights
How this team have not won a championship at EKL yet is a confusing one. Always boasting an amazing driver line up they have never been able to jump that final fence and win the top honours. Lead by Luke Austin and Ian Williams the team bought fresh blood in during 2015 of Connor Marsh and Ronan McKenzie. With this new team stable I honestly believe this could be the year they are able to reach the holy grail and win their maiden EKL championship.
The 2016 edition of the EKL will be tougher than ever with teams leaving and fresh blood entering this could really throw the form book out of the window. Keep an eye out at for race reports on the Karting Magazine website
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