5 April 2010
Formula Kart Stars – Round One and Two - Rowrah
The opening two rounds of the Formula One Management backed Formula Kart Stars Championship from Rowrah in England
Formula Kart Stars came into 2010 looking to build on their relationship with Formula One Management, now entering its second season. There was also a new championship and raceday format and a new venue in the form of Suffolk's Ellough Park.
With twelve rounds over six doubleheader weekends coupled with the new timed qualifying, heats and finals format the series was forced to trim maximum entry numbers in three of its four classes with the proposed KF2 class being scrapped for the second successive year.
The MSA British Cadet Championship still had a bumper entry, including seven of last year's top 15 seeded drivers while Mini Max, Junior Rotax and KF3 were restricted to a maximum entry of 30, a figure which KF3, for the first time in three years, failed to achieve.
New class sponsors in the form of Tag Heuer, Joe Bloggs and control fuel suppliers 1-Fuel by Shell and new relationships with the Race Drivers Academy and the MSA's own elite scheme joined British sportscar manufacturers Ginetta, KEP Printers and JC Motorhomes on the list of series supporters.
Series director Carolynn Hoy, at the helm ever since the championship was launched as the McLaren Mercedes Champions of the Future in 1996, elected to start the season at the popular Cumbrian venue of Rowrah, nestled deep in the Lake District. Taking a gamble on the notoriously fickle British weather, the series started its season under largely dry skies.
In the MSA British Cadet class opening weekend honours were shared between Fusion Motorsport teammates Nathan Aston and Tom Harvey on their numerically superior Zip chassis. Aston, who hails from nearby Dalston used his extensive local knowledge to good effect and was dominant on Saturday, taking pole position and winning both his heats before narrowly defeating Connor Jupp in Saturday's final.
Harvey struck back on Sunday, passing Northern Ireland's Trevyn Jay Nelson with half a lap remaining to win a closely fought final that saw the top 17 finishers cross the line within ten seconds of the winner after more than 15 minutes of racing.
The driver Aston, Harvey et al are trying to emulate in 2010, reigning MSA British Cadet Champion George Russell, made his FKS Mini Max debut at Rowrah, his preferred move into KF3 being scuppered due to the MSA's new age regulations.
Signing for Warwick Ringham's crack Strawberry Racing outfit Russell took a little while to settle in his new class, which showed that, if anything, it was more wide open than the typically manic Cadet field.
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