The Glan-Y-Gors race circuit, situated on the A5 between Corwen and Betws-Y-Coed, is one of the UK premier karting venues that started life comparatively late to other S1 race venues as a 500m non-MSA track in 1999.
The start of the lap begins with a short run to Club Corner, a flat out right hander which drops away on the exit. The kerb at the apex is flat so it’s possible to put a wheel on it whilst the exit kerb is tarmac, which ends with a heavily saw-toothed “add-on” that is best avoided. It is important not to get balked here at the start as you’ll lose a lot of speed going along Dragon Straight.
The Dragon Straight
is very long with a right kink in the middle, what waits at the end of it as another flat out right turn, only this time it’s uphill and leads into a blind entry to the Spoon Hairpin, the best overtaking opportunity on the track. Hit the brakes hard as soon as you crest the hill, the back end of the kart will be kicking out here most likely, before turning in from a mid to 2/3rds left track position to a late apex just off the high inside kerb, an entry position which is too far left will result in either missing the apex by miles or being swallowed up by the chasing pack. Once you’ve apexed in the correct position, Turn 4 which follows immediately afterwards will just be an acceleration zone whilst turning left.
By now you’ll be on the Snowdon Straight (the Mountain it’s named after can be found by looking upwards and right!). This straight is a rapid downhill descent which leads into the Carousel, two left handed bends taken at great speed. Brake just before the bottom of the hill before turning in to an apex just off the kerb, once here begin to feed in the power and let the kart drift out towards the centre of the track by mid-corner ready to clip the second apex as close to the high inside kerb as possible. Once through apex 2, feel free to use the entire track width on exiting to get a good run up the uphill straight. The entry to the Carousel is another good overtaking spot although be aware that the driver being overtaken probably won’t see you until they’re actually turning into the corner so it’s important to get fully alongside them at the turn-in point to make the move cleanly.
After exiting the Carousel, the track climbs uphill again, around another flat out right turn before heading into the second half of the lap, starting with Compression Corner. This corner is extremely fast and off-camber requiring a slight brake or lift on entry before turning in, using the track camber at the apex to keep the momentum up whilst letting the kart run out to the outside on the very steep downhill exit. Compression is not really a famed overtaking spot although it’s possible if the kart in front is going a lot slower than you. It’s better used to set up a possible overtaking opportunity at a later corner.
The Druid’s complex
The Druid’s complex follows quickly afterwards starting with a right hander, The first corner (Druid’s 1) is on-camber this time and is taken very fast, be careful when turning in not to drop your rear outside wheel off the edge of the circuit as you’ll almost certainly end up taking a scary trip over the grass. Once through the bend, try not to drift any wider than mid track to set you up for Druid’s 2, a left handed hairpin which follows immediately afterwards. Druid’s 2 requires decisive braking before turning surprisingly early onto the kerb which, if done correctly, will allow you to keep the momentum up whilst the kerb pulls you round before spitting you out exactly the right position to the next turn. Druid’s 2 use to be a good overtaking spot as everyone use to stay further right on entry leaving plenty of room on the inside to lunge your opponent. These day’s however, everyone is wise to it and stays tight on entry making overtaking a lot harder than before.
The next corner is the undulating Devil’s Elbow section. From your “perfect” track position on exiting Druid’s 2, turn into a late apex either fully over or off the kerb, depending on kart class, before dropping down the dip whilst keeping tight to the inside of the track, before accelerating up and out of the dip towards flat out left hander, which requires another late apex to keep you far over to the left for Paddock Bend.
Paddock Bend is an off camber, 90° right-hander requiring a slight lift off the throttle at the turn-in point. It’s important to get yourself onto the extra bit of tarmac on the right on entry (a good exit from Devil’s Elbow will assist you in doing this) to get the best line through here as a too tight entry will result in understeer through the whole corner and lost speed all the way back up to Spoon Hairpin. The apex is just off the massive inside kerb with the ideal exit point being just touching the edge of the red painted “add-on” at the end of the exit runoff. This is a popular overtaking spot with experienced drivers as the driver in front will pull left to take the corner on the run out of Devil’s Elbow, leaving plenty of room to get up alongside your opponent before the turn-in point and give them the option of dropping in behind you or end up on the grass on the exit to start another
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