KF3 / KF2 European Champions Crowned
The second leg of the KF3 and KF2 Championships was held at the PF International circuit in Brandon, United Kingdom. Many drivers found it difficult to learn and adapt to the British style of circuit that was just recently extended during the pre-season. The event started in typical British weather with heavy showers however by the Saturday the sun was out to provide a great setting for one of the biggest events on the calendar.
As per all CIK Championship events, all competitors raced with the Tillotson HW10A carburetor. The championship was still wide open from the opening round in Varennes; however, Alex Palou (CRG/BMB) held the advantage coming into the event. The favourites for the title included Palou, reigning 2011 European Champion George Russell (Intrepid/Vortex), Callum Illott (Zanardi/IAME), Dorrian Boccalacci (Intrepid/TM), Martin Kodric (Alonso/Vortex) and others. All the pilots provided some fantastic racing throughout the weekend.
In Final 1, Illot stormed into the lead; however, after pushing too hard, a mistake forced him well down the order and Russell, who started at 7th on the grid, fought his way to the lead and pulled a gap to win comfortably from Boccalacci and Kodric. In Final 2 Kodric wasn’t going to let Russell pull away and the pair traded the lead for several laps, but Russell’s speed on the day wasn’t to be denied and he pulled another big gap to cement his second consecutive European KF3 title, the first driver ever to achieve this impressive feat. Alex Palou finished the race as vice champion, and Dorrian Boccalacci took 3rd.
The first leg of this championship was held in Wackersdorf, Germany and coming into this event Max Verstappen (Intrepid/TM) held the title lead; however, it was looking like a tough championship to win with such strong competition. Local UK driver Ben Barnicoat (ART/IAME) was in the running for the title along with his teammate Charles Leclerc (ART/IAME) as well as Felice Tiene (CRB/BMB), Denis Olson (Energy/TM) and many others. Each heat was raced as if it was a final and provided brilliant, intense racing all weekend long.
Denis Olson racing the latest Tillotson HW11B carburetor had proved to be the man to beat after the heats and had qualified on pole position for Final 1. Having taken the lead and pulling a small gap, Olson was cruelly eliminated from the race due to a broken chain. It was Verstappen who took up the mantle and claimed victory over Sam Snell (Energy/IAME) and Barnicoat.
Final 2 was one of the most exciting races produced all season long with as many as six drivers battling for the lead in the last two laps! It was Felice Tiene who claimed a brilliant victory followed by Antonio Fuoco (Kosmic/Vortex) and Verstappen. Verstappen is the provisional European KF2 champion; however, he was racing subject to an appeal due to an incident in the heats with Barnicoat, so if his appeal is not successful, it will be Barnicoat who will be crowned champion! Leclerc, Tiene and Fuoco make up the top 5 in the provisional standings.