Final Round 8, Whilton Mill, 19th Oct
Box-Tech win the race but Team Specsavers win the Championship
Race 8, the final race of the OEKC 2014 championship, took place at Whilton Mill on a warm October Sunday.
Today the OEKC Championship would be decided between Specsavers, KKC & Box-Tech. Qualifying started slowly and the best lap times were all posted in the last 5 laps. The 15 minute qualifying session ended with the top 10 teams separated by less than a second and the top three covered by 3 tenths. A last gasp flying lap put HVAC1 on pole with Box-Tech alongside. KKC & Specsavers took row two ahead of OMR & JRJ. Row 4 was occupied by Clubman team Volga Karting and the only X30 engined team, Kartmasters. Screwloose & IJM completed the top 10.
HVAC1 made a good start with Box-Tech, KKC & Specsavers right behind. Volga Karting made an early move into 5th place. By lap 25 Box-Tech were in the lead, HVAC1 second and Volga Karting now third, although the top eleven teams were all on the same lap. Other than AEM, who were in the pits, every team was within 1 lap of the leaders. Bumpdraft had put in a fastest lap of 46.79.
HVAC1 were back in the lead by lap 75, Box-Tech 2nd with Bumpdraft up to 3rd. Specsavers were down to 5th and KKC were 13th and on the same lap as X30 team, Kartmasters. 5 laps covered the top 18 teams after more than an hour of racing. A further 25 laps and KKC had got into 3rd place, immediately ahead of Specsavers & Volga karting.
Mechanical issues were shaking up the grid with MTH suffering a broken axle and AEM having ongoing engine problems. As the teams approached the 150 lap point Box-Tech were back in the lead, ahead of HVAC1 & Specsavers. Solid drives by IJM1, JRJ and OMR put them 3rd, 4th & 5th respectively with Blue Lizard and Kartmasters in 7th & 8th. Mechanical problems had dropped Bumpdraft to 16th & Volga Karting to 18th.
Box-Tech reached lap 181 first, a lap ahead of HVAC1, KKC & Specsavers. JRJ were a lap behind and IJM1 on 178 laps.The next four teams were all Clubman team, STI, To the Max, HVAC2 & DAMage. Box-Tech were still leading on lap 215 with HVAC1 2nd, Specsavers 3rd and JRJ 4th. A cracked chassis caused Kartmasters to pit and make repairs before rejoining the race.
An hour from the end of the race and Box-Tech were still a lap ahead of HVAC1. KKC were back in 3rd place with Specsavers 4th, JRJ 5th & HVAC2 6th followed by IJM, STI, Volga karting and TT Sport.
Box-Tech were still leading by two laps on lap 280, HVAC1 were still second, but Specsavers were now 3rd ahead of JRJ & KKC. Screwloose, AEM & MTH had all suffered mechanical issues and were almost 100 laps behind the leaders.
A few laps later and JRJ joined them in the pits, a broken yolk, caused by metal fatigue, ending their involvement. DAMage also retired due to a cracked steering column support.
Box-Tech won the race, having completed 334 laps. HVAC1 were second and Specsavers third, both on 332 laps. KKC were 4th , STI 5th , HVAC2 6th .Volga karting 7th and IJM1 8th both finished on lap 324. JRJ & TT Sport finished on 321 laps and completed the top 10.
Round 8 Clubman class winners were STI, 2nd HVAC2 and Volga karting 3rd.
2015 Race dates, rules & regs can be found at www.oekc.co.uk