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Maiden U18 glory for England’s Dennis
25 July 2010
Englishman Jake Dennis made history by winning the first ever round of the CIK-FIA's new Under 18 World Championship series at Wackersdorf in Germany.
The Racing Steps Foundation backed driver beat an international field of more than 60 other drivers to win the 25-lap final by nearly a full second over Finland's Matias Koykka.
In the first of three U18 World Championship races Dennis was seventh fastest in qualifying and took two wins and two runner-up finishes in his four heats to finish joint top of the intermediate standings, at which point the field was culled from 63 to 34.
From the front row of the grid Dennis won the first of two pre-finals but that equated to a last place starting slot for the second, reverse grid race. A 19th place finish in race two meant that Dennis started the all-important point scoring final from seventh place.
But Dennis was quickly on the move and took the lead from Italy's Simone Favaro on lap nine and never looked back, crossing the line to take 25 points and the early season championship lead.
Koykka emerged in second place after a protracted scrap with countryman and Redstep teammate Teemu Suninen with Irishman John Norris taking a superb fourth for his family-run operation.
While Britain may have taken the overall victory there was no doubt that the Finnish contingent had the best strength in depth with Ville Mantyla making it three Finn's in the top five in the final. Frenchman Vincent Fraisse finished sixth with Austria's Julian Wagner seventh and Spain's Victor Colome eighth.
Northern Irishman Adam Stirling, returning to karting following a layoff from the national scene in the UK, defied expectations to finish a strong ninth against some far more experienced competition with Austrian Stefan Riener rounding out the top ten.
The event was not without controversy as Favaro was black flagged in the final while last years European KF2 Champion Jordan Chamberlain was excluded for the entire meeting for what the officials somewhat harshly deemed to be dangerous driving.
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