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On Saturday 3rd June, the sun blessed Fulbeck for NatSKA’s 2016/17 season, 10th round. Always a popular venue with NatSKA teams due to its reasonably central location, Fulbeck’s paddock was a hive of activity.
The, still relatively new to NatSKA, class for younger drivers has seen substantial growth this year. Still primarily populated by Tarporley drivers, the grid hosted 10 entries with drivers using cadet karts from all current and previous MSA homologations. Heat 1 saw Barclay’s Jack Habershon take the chequered flag with Tarporley’s Alfie Davies and Jake Bastable giving him no room for error. Disaster struck in heat 2 with only 4 karts finishing. Bastable took full advantage with a first place finish and Tarporley’s Lewis Smith picked up a second. Heat 3 Habershon quickly showed who’s boss in the class although Alfie Davies made him work for it, putting in the fastest lap of the meeting with a 54.87. Heat 4 Davies finally picks up a first place finish, closely followed by Habershon, Bastable and Tarporley Driver Joseph Booth. Kudos goes to Tarporley’s Rowan Cartwright for his perseverance running the only Comer W60 in his first meeting out of the Novice class.
NatSKA’s Junior TKM equivalent class continues to thrive despite many of the top drivers missing meetings due to calendar clashes with Super One. Fulbeck welcomed a grid of 24 entries from 9 teams across the country. With a quarter of the grid failing to finish heat one, ATC’s Maria Bright took the chequered flag, having started ninth, showing why she’s top of the championship table. Heat 2 saw Bright’s team mate Charlie Mooney take the flag with St Michaels Sam Palmer in second and Tarporley’s Sam Saltmarsh in third. Overzealous driving in heat 3 saw off a third of the grid on lap one with Archie Crosier (TCR) to finish at the front with Bright and Palmer close behind. Heat 4 saw disaster with a red flag resulting in a re-start later on, giving drivers chance to make emergency repairs. Only 15 managed a finish with Palmer first, Matthew Hearst (Crossdale) taking second and stealing the fastest lap of the day. Tarporley’s Katie Pritchard gained a well earned 3rd place despite being embroiled in the red flag incident. The championship could be anyone’s with Bright, Mooney and Palmer within 2 points of each other sitting strong at the top.
The 60cc Comer class utilising a full size chassis and open tyre choice has suffered in recent times with only two drivers currently taking part in this year’s championship series. Sharing the grid with the junior 4 strokes provides some great racing despite the low entries. Tarporley’s Daniel Kenny and Bexley’s Jay Ralph both put in some consistent performances in heats 1, 2 and 3. With Kenny’s experience paying off against Novice driver Ralph, the championship tables remain unchanged with neither driver finishing heat 4. Kenny takes the silverware this time but will no doubt be looking over his shoulder at Llandow.
The junior 4 stroke class continues to be, by far, NatSKA’s most popular offering, with 29 entries showing up at Fulbeck and 48 drivers currently on the championship table. Barnwell’s Samuel Forbes took heat 1 with team mate Michael Otero and AMS’s Joseph Loake picking up 2nd and 3rd. Loake took heat 2 with Tarporley’s Dominic Roberts hanging onto 2nd and St Michael’s Samuel Perkins in 3rd. Heat 3 went to Bexley’s Henry Wardell with Loake in 2nd, St Michaels’ Daniel Murray in 3rd and Roberts gaining 12 places to finish 4th. Heat 4 had Forbes back at the front, Wardell in 2nd and Perkins gaining an astonishing 18 places to finish 3rd. The meeting results leave Henry Wardell leading the championship with Loake, TCR’s Harrison Francis, Perkins and Roberts in contention for the title.
The 100cc reed/rotary/piston port class continues to struggle with no entries at Fulbeck despite the wide availability of low cost engines. Despite the growing popularity within historic series F100 and Retro Racer it seems like the class may have to be abandoned. For more information about the opportunity to race this fantastic breed of machine check out www.natska.co.uk.
Another class unique to NatSKA is a stepping stone class compared by some to super cadet classes. Class 14 uses a full size chassis with either an 85cc Radne Raket engine or a BT82 with an exhaust restrictor. This year’s grid has struggled with low entries and efforts are required to bring the previously popular class back to life. Tarporley’s Ewan Sime dominated Fulbeck’s grid taking a comfortable win in all 4 heats and Barclay’s Callum Bowden claiming 2nd over all.
Drivers aged 11 upwards looking for a stepping stone to Junior TKM might find this class a great opportunity to find their feet with a full size chassis before taking the plunge.
Class 12 and 13
The senior 4 stroke and modified Honda classes share the grid with class 14 and put up a decent grid contribution. With 8 class 12 (senior 4 stroke) and 1 class 13 (modified Honda) there was some interesting diversity on the track. Barclay’s Ross Wilcox showed the restricted TKM’s in class 14 that with a bit of know how you can make your mark with a modified Honda having the edge over Mills on the straight while Mills clearly had the edge through Fulbeck’s challenging turns.
In class 12 heat 1 went to Thomas Alleyne Academy driver Reese Miller-Dineen with Barclay’s William Keith in 2nd and TCR’s Cheyenne Davies in 3rd. Keith took heat 2 with Miller-Dineen on his tail and Davies again in 3rd. Heat 3 sees another Miller-Dineen/Keith one/two finish this time wtih Barclays’ Max Homfray-Cooper in 3rd place and heat 4 repeats the same results. Miller-Dineen leads the championship with a full season of 1st place finishes.
NatSKA’s Junior Rotax Max equivalent class holds a consistent grid of around 15 entries. With a minimum age of 14, driver maturity and experience shows. Heat 1 was incredibly close with all drivers finishing within 23 seconds of race winner, Tarporley’s Tom Taylor. Barclay’s Joe Habershon and ATC’s Dan Jones following him home close behind. Heat 2 was Barclay’s Ehtan Murrill’s turn to shine with Taylor, St Michaels’ James Scanlon and Tarporley’s Jake Saltmarsh less than a second behind. In heat 3 things got interesting with AMS’ Jordan Brown taking the chequered flag, Barclay’s Harvey Hollick finishing second and putting in class 15’s fastest lap of the day and Edmonton’s Rio Rhoden working hard to gain 13 places and take third. Hollick started and finished heat 4 at the front, ahead of Rhoden who took 9 places to claim second and ATC’s Connor Modro who held fast in 3rd.
Finishing the day with 100 points was Tom Taylor with Hollick and Rhoden 2nd and 3rd. With only 10 points between 1st and 4th in the championship Llandow will have us all on the edge of our seats!
Reports and images by Charlotte Mills