The Day started with a beautiful morning for some time, as we started last Sunday afternoon the new PCI-Karting Champion season 2011 with a bang.
This time we visited the venue destined for race 7 of last year's Championship, but due to weather (snow) as you all know the race was cancelled and we installed the venue as the first race of this season.
As you may have also heard, this will be the Venue where the Karting-Charity event will be held on the 20th of March in which Mick Burke is organising a team consisting of PCI Members to compete in and help to raise money’s for 4 Charity’s to benefit.
The day’s action last Sunday, did get off to a great start even with the technical hitch endured. It turned out that the Computer timing for a Grand Prix session was broken and therefore we had to convert to two races each of 30 min., from which we then had taken the full race-times to work out the classifications. So it was for all 15 participants straight into race-action with no familiarisation or practice laps. Admittingly a bit tough with a new track for most of us, but from what we witnessed it was no problem for any of the competitors as they all swung into competitive action from the drop of the chequered flag.
Race 1 had Mark, Brian, Graham, Andy, Dave, Ciaran and John hitting the then dry track for positions with Mark going after turn one into the lead, as everybody juggled for the best positions they could get from turn 1 right with Brian initially being squeezed but happily took P2 coming into turn 2 right heading up and through turn 3 left drifting right and positioning for left turn 3 tight and lining up immediately for even tighter right turn 4, straight up to left turn 5 drifting a little to the right and lining up left for right turn 6 drifting left to correct to the right at full throttle to take right turn 7 on the finish/start line straight with the pedal to the metal. From what we, who where to start in Race 2 could assert, the action was plenty and the race was fought fair and square as we observed with growing enthusiasm how our friends would do out there as a shower of heavy rain from around the middle of the race spiced up the action. There were a few skids here and there which we didn’t observe as we all dashed inside knowing we probably get wet enough in race 2. Race 1 finished after 37 laps with Brian in P1, Mark P2, Graham P3, Andy with one lap down in P4, Dave down 3 laps in P5, Ciaran with 4 laps down in P6 and John who had a lot of trouble with his Kart and eventually had to retire with mechanical problems.
Race 2 had the usual suspects like our current PCI-Karting Champion Anthony, Joe who was sitting out most of last year's season but has committed this year and hopes to put his name to the PCI-Perpetual Trophy, as well as Connie my consistent rival, Mike who committed to the season, new to the Karting Championship and most welcome, young Sean (Ciaran’s Son), Mick our local Matador, to spice things up one of the best if not the best Porsche Open competitor in Ireland Bob, the current Class 3 Champion and overall Champion of the Porsche Open, to round it off myself, hoping for a good and action filled season for all.
I was lined up with Mike I think on the grid and had to immediately defend my position from the drop of the chequered flag as we all made way to right turn 1 on a now slippery surface. More skidding/sliding then driving I fortunately made my way through and lined up for right turn 2 sitting in P2 as Bob took P1 from the first turn. I could feel from behind that I wasn’t going to have an easy race as at least three where on my case as Bob was sliding through left turn 3 drifting a little right taking left turn 4 as tight as possible and lined up straight away sliding into right turn 5 powering out and up to left turn 6 at full throttle through sliding a little to line up (with throttle off only a little) for right turn 7 drifting to the left and pull in tight to take right turn 7 at full throttle out onto the home straight.
As the race went on we all had a few scare’s bar Bob who just leisurely run his race up front and was never in any danger of losing his position. Mike had the most spectacular incident as he tried taking turn 1 at full throttle in the slippery conditions and literally buried himself on the left bank after the turn and was absolutely covered with dirt. I had a few skirmishes as I was lapping and had to take braking action in order to slide into Sean, rather then hit him in a head-on collision which was the better out-come in both cases as we both luckily could continue the race. It was on the last skirmish, where I had to surrender my P2 and was taken over by Anthony, Joe and Connie, cursing myself for not being wiser. As I luckily made it back to tale Connie the same happened to Connie as he lapped one of the lads with the same faith and lost P4.
Race 2 finished with Bob at least half a Lap ahead of all of us, with Anthony coming in second, Joe hot on Anthony’s tale in 3rd, myself just about making 4th as Connie having caught up with me again finishing 5th and Mike even with his spectacular Spin in 6th, Sean our youngest racer with an eventful 7th and Mick suffered the same faith as John in race 1 who had to retire with mechanical trouble’s.
Wow Guy’s what a start to the season, I couldn’t have asked for any better as everybody applied themselves to the difficult conditions/circumstances and competed truly in sporting and competitive fashion. My gratitude goes to all, you made this a great day again and a fantastic start to this year’s PCI Karting-Championship season. This 1st round was a bit difficult to determine the race positions after the two races held on the day with the time – sheets given to us, you may have read above or know as you had been racing.
Race one had in total 37 Laps and race two had 40 laps by one competitor. I therefore have applied first of all a base between the two races, with 37 laps as baseline and then I reduced the first Lap as this was the slowest Lap by all and deducted the slowest Lap of each individual racer thereafter who had more than 37 laps completed. It resulted in the following Classifications:
1st Bob, 2nd Brian, 3rd Joe, 4th Mark, 5th Anthony, 6th Connie, 7th Graham, 8th George, 9th Mike, 10th Andy, 11th Dave, 12th Ciaran, 13th Sean, 14th Mick, 15th John,
As we have an increase of participating Porsche Club members, I decided to change the point scoring system (after some consultation) in order for members to score points even if they were in 10th place.
We are also suggesting making two additional changes to score even more points on the day. We would like to hear some feedback from you if we should implement them to this Championship season from Round 2 onwards.
1, we would like to give points to the fastest Lap recorded.
2, we could also adapt from the Porsche Open Championship the following:
You would have one Joker per Championship season whereby you would double your points in a particular race.
You would have to declare to the organisers before the race that you want to use your Joker in this particular race.
As only Porsche Club Members can score points in the Championship, here are the points scored by each individual Member after the first round with the new point scoring applied.
Bob 15 points
Brian 12 points,
Joe 10 points,
Anthony 8 points,
Connie 6 points,
George 5 points,
Mike 4 points,
Andy 3 points,
Dave 2 points,
Ciaran 1 point
Unfortunately Mick and John didn’t score, as much as I would like to have seen to, not to their fault indeed while they competed like all of us with heart and soul. We had a total of 15 participants in the first race of the season of which 12 are Porsche Club Members. As I am absolutely delighted with the turn-out I hope it will continue all throughout the season, it will make the Championship a much more competitive affair and the Perpetual Trophy a much more coveted goal as you are competing with the best.
It now leaves me only to thank everybody again for their efforts to come and compete in the breath taking manner they had undertaken under the conditions. I would like to leave with; it was great to see young Mannix after his ordeal last year back along with his Dad, looking really well and giving his Dad some other things to do then just racing.
Many thanks George