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The Ryehouse Prokarting series was born back in 1997. Since then it’s seen many forms of organisation, duration, entrants & changes. 2016 was the year that the season took on a strong brand based – RHPK.
This month was a very special month, both Burton Power and ITS Tools came together to sponsor the series and book a televised round which would be later broadcast on Motors TV.
The run up till race day was very active, both on the phones at the track & social media. The Tuesday following on from Round 2 (April) saw a flurry of teams booking in. By 11am on Tuesday, Round 3 was fully booked even with two spaces on the grid added! We had a waiting list of 4 teams.
Due to popular demand the track put on exclusive RHPK practice on the Friday where a number of teams prepared & set the kart up for Saturdays race.
May saw a couple of team changes, Piers Prior who previously raced for Team Karting Magazine joined ABA Racing this month.
Team Karting Magazine upped the stakes with both Bradley Philpot & Lee Henderson.
Unfortunately, JAKL Racing cracked their chassis in qualifying just after securing 23rd spot on the grid. Meaning they were unable to take part any further. Team BMH, one of the reserves was given the green light to take JAKL’s place but would start from the back.
At 3pm all of the karts were sent to the track where Chris Mccarthy interviewed various teams in a Martin Brundle like grid walk! 36 Karts were present for the start of the race.
A Season first, Hot Rod legend, Barry Lee joined the RHPK team to commentate throughout the race. Barry was the voice over the duration of the race and interviewing drivers as they finished their stint.
Not only was it a pleasure to have Barry with us, but to be commentating for 4 hours straight on every race, incident and almost all of the action added another dimension to the day.
The start of the Race was kicked off by our sponsors. Kevin, ITS Tools headed the packed with the Ariel Atom and at the rear, Andy from Burton Power with his 400bhp+ Focus RS called Kermit!
As the green flag is dropped, 36 karts ABA Racing leads the pack going into the first corner with Helicopter Services nose on the inside. Baron Racing racing just behind and Team Alpha on the outside. NMA Racinglead the Clubman class, with Amigos and ITS 2 behind on the first corner. On the left hand flick there is a incident, a kart gets squeezed and it’s front wheels are airborne slightly!
Coming into the first hairpin another incident, Team Wraith’s chain is off and is forced to pit. Coming down the straight for the second time ABA is covering off Helicopter Services however Helicopter Services finds a gap and is into the lead closely followed by Baron & Team Alpha.
Throughout the duration of the race, many teams had a number of highs and lows of endurance racing – some great battles all the way down the pack which will make great racing once edited for Motors TV. In the last 30 minutes of the race we saw Helicopter Services catching Team Alpha for the lead, 5 seconds down the track saw a similar battle, a chasing ABA Racing to take 3rd. Both heated teams Helicopter Services and Team Alpha had a coming together on the first hairpin which was seen to be deemed advantage by contact by Helicopter Services – the team slowed down to let Alpha through where they came together once again – both teams retired, a real disappointing finish considering we had 20 minutes of the race to go.
As the Chequered flag drops, ABA Racing take the flag – however they are underweight by 0.5KG – netting them a 10 lap penalty – this means the win goes to Custom Rods who were previously sitting in 5th place half an hour prior to the race finishing! Red Racing in their debut race with RHPK finish a fantastic 2nd place andFocus Racing round up the top three in a incredible third despite qualifying 15th!
In Clubman Amigos take the win by just seconds to newcomers DWS Racing in 2nd. Burton Power Racing take a well earned 3rd place. This weekend we saw Burton Power step up and find pace, they qualified 1st in class.
A notable mention goes to new to RHPK, Team PGS who started at the back of the grid due to coming in underweight in qualifying, after 4 hours they worked their way through the pack. But despite their efforts they weighed in just underweight again.
Team Karting Magazine finish a well deserved 5th place – despite coming into to do a driver change when the team were not ready, meaning they had to come in again shortly after! Their best result yet! Well done guys.