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Earlier this afternoon at the Genk circuit in Belgium, Fin Kenneally was crowned the 2016 CIK-FIA OKJ European Champion! He beat Noah Watt (DNK) to the title by just two points with Victor Martins (FRA) only three points behind Fin who scored a total of 112 points after dropped scores.
This was Finâ€™s first year racing in the OK Junior class after jumping up from Junior Max last year. He joined the Ricky Flynn Motorsport Team who won the same title with Enaam Ahmed in 2014, but who knew such success would come so soon.
Fin was quick to make his statement of intent in the class after winning the South Garda Winter Cup back in February becoming just the eighth British winner in Winter Cup history!
The CIK-FIA European Championship was contested over four rounds in 2016 starting at Zuera (ESP) before heading to Adria (ITA), Portimao (POR) and finally ending at Genk.
With your best three scores in the Pre Final and Final counting towards your overall championship mistakes on more than one occasion can terminate chances of glory. None of the points from the heats can be dropped and in my opinion I think thatâ€™s where Fin won this championship.
Fin was one of the only drivers who scored points in pretty much everything bar a zero score during the heats at Round two.
Overall throughout all four sets of heats Fin scored a total of 26 points with Watt scoring 24 and Martins a lousy 12.
In Martinsâ€™ defence his opening two rounds were a disaster, but wins in the last two rounds almost helped him along to a miraculous victory.
However, at the same location where he won the Rotax Max Euro Challenge in dramatic circumstances last year, Fin found himself adding another European Championship to his racing CV. This one though, the one every karter dreams of winning!
He qualified on the front row for the Pre Final where he went on to finish 4th in his group putting him on the outside of row four for the final.
From there he was able to drive through to 2nd to follow home Martins with his countryman, Teddy Wilson finishing in 3rd. It was a terrible weekend overall for Watt but you can not take anything away from Fin who is a very deserved champion.
With most kart tracks empty this weekend there was plenty of support online for the RFM driver with friends in the karting community tuning in to watch Fin on the CIK live stream.
Fin becomes the thirteenth Brit to win the title in short circuit racing and joins the current list of Brits which includes:
Itâ€™s a moment Iâ€™m sure Fin will remember for a long time and heâ€™ll undoubtedly be trying to following in Enaam Ahmedâ€™s foot steps in trying to add the World Championship to the trophy cabinet in the same year!
After bad luck throughout the season Kiern Jewiss finished 10th in the championship with Teddy Wilson 13th. Two drivers who are more than capable of following in Fin’s footsteps very soon!
Written by Chris McCarthy