Kartforce had a successful year in 2012 with a Guinness World Record at the Teeside Autodrome and success in the Inter Services Karting Championship. 2013 is set to be a busier year for the team and yesterday, Red Bull Kart Fight Champion Bradley Philpot offered to help out.
The founder of Kartforce, Dave Player explained to Crash.net
: "Bradley contacted us last night. He said, 'I'll get to know the guys, and find out what level they are currently at. I'll then give some basic pointers if required before moving on to watching each driver individually, and correcting or helping with any issues that I can see. It will be step by step.'"
Philpot becomes another driver to coach the team as last year Johnny Herbert, Josh Hill and Johnny Mowlem coached them.
The team appeared at Herbert's Karting Challenge during the Autosport International Show. This year the three hour endurance race was for the Alzheimer's Society in honour of Dan Wheldon.
Former Top Gear "Stig" and stunt driver for Skyfall
Ben Collins joined the team as a VIP driver. His team-mates were Trooper Steve Shine, Lance Corporal Martyn Compton, Private Mark Allen, Davie Birrell of the Black Watch and Welsh Guardsman Dale Leach who was making his race debut.
The team's fastest lap in the race was only 0.833 off the fastest lap. The field included names like Herbert, Rob Huff, David Brabham, Emanuele Pirro and James Winslow. The team called the race the "perfect start" to the year.
The season is going to be busy as Player said: "We have injured troops all over the country keen to get in to karting. We're organising three races – Crawley, Cardiff and Manchester – where teams can enter and race against us. These indoor events will give new lads a chance to get a taste of karting with hand controls and racing as a team. When funds are available, we can then look at setting up more sessions at different tracks around the country so we can get more injured troops karting."
Teeside Autodrome will be visited again for another world record attempt. "We're now starting to plan our next world record projects," Player said. "The idea is for a new team of four injured troops to try to break the 24 hour distance record set by the team in 2012. At the same time, we'll aim to set new 24 hour solo records, possibly also one by a triple amputee driver using one hand only. This year we'll enter the full series of the Inter Services Karting Championships and hope to enter two teams.
Player also mentioned other commitments: "We'll be racing in as many of the Rye House Prokart Owner Driver races as we can squeeze in. We're also entering the 24 hour Daytona in Milton Keynes in May, the Henry Surtees Karting Challenge at Mercedes-Benz in Blackwood in June and the Le Mans 24 hour in France in July."
by Simon Stiel