Club 2000, Round 11, 4 December 2021
Report by Nathan Blake
It had rained in the night to leave us with a wet track in the morning. Despite the cold temperatures, the track dried up a fair amount coming up to lunch. For heat 2 after lunch, almost everyone had opted for the slicks and stuck with them for the remaining races.
Please note - Events written here are from my point of view and may differ to yours.
Coming into the final round, the championship fight was close between Will Rogers (53) and Teddie Cooper (79) however, the pair weren’t the only drivers who were fighting hard and driving well. Hayden Gray (6) returned to Club2000 for the first time this year and grabbed maximum points despite qualifying in 2nd. However, Teddie (79) set the fastest lap overall in the final with the track in it’s best condition of the day – a 47.588.
Immediately, we saw a great reaction from Teddie Cooper (79) to the lights and he kept his lead. Around 4 laps in, Lucien Smith (43) held a nice power-slide on the exit of paddock. As the race continued, all the drivers spread out apart from the two leaders, Teddie (79) and Hayden Gray (6). Hayden (6) was reeling him in at a good rate and by lap 7, he was right behind. Coming into the Esses, Hayden (6) lunged into a gap to the inside of Teddie (79) and stayed ahead for the right-hander.
Everyone had still opted for the wets apart from Will Rogers (53), gambling on the slicks. Again, it was a clean start. On the first lap, Kiean Sullivan (26) was right behind Teddie (79) until he moved up the inside into the Esses and took 2nd. Teddie (79) was then vulnerable to Will (53) behind on the slicks. After getting a great exit out of Paddock, Will (53) pulled alongside Teddie (79) into the French Curve and had the inside into Senna. Teddie (79) held it beautifully around the outside and had the advantage coming into 180. However, Will (53) tried again. He braked early into 180, took the inside and executed a perfect switchback to stay ahead up to the Warren. Now, Theo Hamilton (30) was right behind Teddie (79) who unfortunately seemed to be going backwards in the race. After running wide on the Warren, Theo (30), close behind, stuck to the racing line and powered past Teddie (79) to take 4th. 2 laps later, Lucien Smith (43) was next in line to pass Teddie (79) and he did, as he was slow out of 180. It would be unfair to put this performance down to Teddie (79) as it seemed there was an issue with his kart. From lap 4, Will’s (53) tyres were switching on and he was catching Kiean (26). Over 6 laps, he brought the gap from 3.1s to 0.8s but the race ended before he was close enough to try and take 2nd.
Teddie (79) was now set up for a comeback. On the first lap, he managed to get past Lucien (43) and Theo (30). Will (53) also had a good start and took 2nd from Kiean (26) before the end of the first lap. Next, Teddie (79) made a good move to the inside of Kiean (26) around the Esses and took 3rd. He now had to push hard to catch Will (53) who was 2.5s up the road. On lap 6, Theo (30) was directly behind Lucien (43) when he pulled off a great switchback around the Warren and got a great run up the back straight to stay ahead. On the final lap, Teddie (79) was right behind his championship rival. Coming into Senna, Teddie (79) pulls off a deep lunge onto Will (53) and the pair have slight contact. Despite this, Will (53) held his line nicely and stayed ahead up to 180. Again, desperate to get past, Teddie (79) lunged onto Will (53) into the left-hander of 180 in a forceful fashion and took 2nd.
It was another clean start. Lucien (43) immediately had some great pace and made it up to 4th. Just a few laps later though, there was an incident on 180. Kiean (26) had a half-spin and with nowhere to go, Lucien (43) wacked his sidepod - coincidentally helping Kiean (26) face the right way. The drivers were okay and no stoppage was required. Meanwhile, Will (53) was right behind them and passed both drivers to take 3rd behind his rival, Teddie (79). However, Kiean (26) was determined to have a spot on the podium. He was only around 0.5s away from Will (53). By lap 9, he was right behind and putting the pressure on. He got a good slip-stream from Will (53) across the line and found a gap to the inside of the French Curve. It was a very brave move and it paid off – resulting in a 3rd place finish for Kiean (26).
1st – Hayden Gray (6)
2nd – Teddie Cooper (79)
3rd – Kiean Sullivan (26)
4th – Will Rogers (53)
5th – Lucien Smith (43)
For the final time this year, Alex Beale (43) raced as the only Minimax on the back of the Junior Rotax grid. For next season, it’s confirmed he will be racing in Junior Rotax. Yet again, Alex (43) drove consistently and adapted well to the drying conditions.
Coming into the final round, Matthew Copsey (97) was set to win the championship with a big point lead however, it was still possible for either Jenson Weston (34) or Sam Cooper (44) to take 2nd. It was a great day of racing and the fight was close between the top three throughout. Novice, Christopher Harris (9) performed very well and even managed a 5th place finish in the final amongst many who were more experienced. Matthew (97) set the fastest lap overall with a 41.508 in the final.
Jenson Weston (34) had a great performance in qualifying and started pole with a lap time 0.5s quicker than Sam Cooper’s (44) in 2nd. Starting from the back was Elliot Reed-Hughes (95) who came in on the first lap of qualifying with what seemed like a misfiring engine however, on the first lap he impressively managed to make his way up to 7th. Unfortunately, Cameron Pottle (7) dropped back from 6th to 12th by the end of the first lap though. After a few laps of leading, Jenson (34) took too much kerb and clipped the tyres coming into Senna, spinning him around and leaving Sam (44) and Matthew Copsey (97) to take 1st and 2nd. Just a couple laps later, Jenson (34) unfortunately made the same mistake again, dropping back further and into 5th. After it looked like everyone had settled into their final positions, Anthony Ward (33) sadly retired from the race on the last lap, promoting everyone behind up a spot.
Immediately after the start, Cameron (7) spun at the French Curve and Alex Beale (43)* close behind, spun taking avoiding action. Coming into 180, Anthony (33) had a spin and stopped in front of the tyre wall, leaving him patiently waiting for a marshal to run over and push him back. Meanwhile, towards the front of the pack, Jenson (34) was on a mission to get past Michael Morgan (54). Coming into the French Curve, Jenson (34) tapped the rear of Michael (54) and passed him, resulting in a black and white warning flag. A lap later, Sam (44) had a spin on the Warren, dropping the unlucky driver from 3rd to 8th. However, Sam (44) was then on a charge and impressively made it back up to 5th by the 7th lap. Just one lap from the end, Anthony’s (33) bad luck still hadn’t changed as he suffered a spin and couldn’t get his Rotax started back up again.
Coming into the first corner, Christopher Harris (9) pulled off a great, deep lunge to pass another driver and move up into 5th. A couple laps later, the role was reversed as Michael (54) moved to the inside of Christopher (9) at the French Curve and stayed ahead coming into Senna. On lap 7, Euan Richards (29) suffered a spin coming around Senna losing three places to drop down to 10th followed by a retirement a lap later. Meanwhile, Sam (44) made his way past Elliott (95) to take 3rd.
On the start, Sam (44) and Jenson (34) made their way past an unusually slow Matthew (97) on the first lap and took 1st and 2nd respectively. Again, Christopher (9) had a good start and took 4th by the end of the first lap. Anthony’s (33) luck seemed to change as he also took two places within the first lap. Elliott (95) picked up some pace and began to put pressure on Christopher (9) while Matthew (97) made his way past Jenson (34) and took 2nd. On lap 6, there was a tangle on the warren between Anthony (33) and Euan Richards (29). Euan’s (29) kart had found itself over the top of Anthony (33). Trying to brave it, Anthony (33) continued up to the Esses where he stopped and was checked over by a paramedic. The race was stopped and after the paramedic was happy, we continued with the next race.
1st – Sam Cooper (44)
2nd – Matthew Copsey (97)
3rd – Jenson Weston (34)
4th – Elliott Reed-Hughes (95)
5th – Christopher Harris (9)
After taking home maximum points in round 10, Oliver Bowen (55) led the championship coming into the final round. In return, friendly rival, Luke Bate (95) tried his absolute best and scored maximum points on round 11 but it wasn’t enough and he was just 15 points shy of the championship win. As always with the TKMs, the racing was close between everyone and of a high standard. Luke Bate (95) was also quickest this round in the final with the fastest lap being a 42.571.
In the first heat, it was a really quick start. Despite everybody finishing in the positions they started in, it was really close racing. Coming into paddock, Jake Cox (26) moved to the inside but Luke Bate (95) held it nicely around the outside. With Luke Jarman (18) close behind, he followed Luke B (95) through to pass Jake (26) across the line. A few corners later in 180, Jake (26) moved to the inside and took back 2nd from Luke J (18). It was so close between the top three. Towards the end, Luke J (18) went for a last-minute move to the inside of Jake (26). Although he went deep enough, Jake (26) held his line and stayed ahead for the right-hander.
It was a tidier start this time. Jessica Fitch-Hall (22) found a way past William Briant (97) and took 7th by the end of the first lap. Oliver Bowen (55) found a way past Freya Woodall (16) on the start but after running wide on paddock, Freya (16) took 4th back. Oliver (55), now desperate to get past, looked to the inside of Freya (16) into 180 but it didn’t stick and she stayed ahead. Soon after though, coming down the Simpson Straight, he pulled alongside Freya (16) and passed along the inside for 4th. A lap later, Jessica (22) finally found a way past Liam Bermoy (127) and took 6th. Towards the front, Luke J (18) tried a brave move to the inside of the French Curve on Jake (26) but was too far back and he couldn’t make it stick. Jake (26) was defending really well.
Again, it was a clean start. Jake (26) had a slow start to the race and dropped back to 4th, allowing Luke J (18) and Oliver (55) to inherit 2nd and 3rd respectively. William (97) also passed Jessica (22) on the start and gained some pace to begin pulling away. On Lap 4 and after driving well up in 2nd, Luke J (18) felt the pressure and ran deep on Senna, donating 2nd to Oliver (55) who was close behind.
Immediately on the start, Luke J (18) got past Jake (26) and started pulling away. Luke B (95) in the lead began to pull away more though driving almost 0.3s a lap quicker than 2nd. It was close between Jake (26) and Oliver (55) though with a gap of just 0.2s between them. Coming up to the last lap, Oliver (55) was desperate to pass. He made a move to the inside of Jake (26) on 180 and the pair tangled. While a marshal helped them untangle, the rest of the drivers passed them and the unlucky pair finished in 7th and 8th.
1st – Luke Bate (95)
2nd – Luke Jarman (18)
3rd – Freya Woodall (16
4th – William Briant (97)
5th – Jessica Fitch-Hall (22)
William Bloom (56) seemed to have gained
some great momentum over the last few rounds but Reece Bright (27) put an end to it for the last round. James Drabwell (5) had a great start to the day, taking pole after qualifying however, the two championship rivals were pushing each-other hard, leaving James in 3rd for most of the day.
Before the race had even begun, Alfie Wilkes (22) strangely pulled off into the pits and retired from the race. After a great performance in qualifying, James Drabwell (5) started on pole. For the start, however, he was slow getting away from the line and lost out to Reece Bright (27). William Bloom (56) didn’t have a great qualifying session and started in 4th but he quickly made up for it as he passed Harvey Cursley (44) off the line and James (5) as he locked up into Senna. Harvey (44) looked to the inside of James (5) into 180 as he looked vulnerable but James (5) held him off and maintained 3rd. After a few laps, William (56) began to catch Reece (27) but the race ended before he could make a move.
It was a quite uniform start but coming around Senna, Cassidy Beeton (66) goes around in a spin, leaving Alfie (22) to take 5th. Cassidy (66) starts her comeback, however, and by lap 4, she was right behind him. Coming into Senna, she made a deep lunge to the inside and took 5th from Alfie (22). 3 laps later, Cassidy (66) was then behind Harvey (44) and made a great switchback on the Warren to take 4th.
On the first lap, Alfie (22) got past Harvey (44) and then Cassidy (66) got a good exit out of 180 and passed James (5). William (56) was already desperate to pass Reece (27) and moved to the inside into the Esses but was held off well due to Reece’s (27) tough defence. James (5) was pressuring Cassidy (66) and made a move to the inside into the French Curve and passed for 3rd. Shortly after, Cassidy (66) took 3rd back. Meanwhile, Alfie (22) unfortunately lost one of his chains and came into the pits to retire. Again, showing desperation, William (56) moved to the inside of Reece (27) into the French Curve but backed out at the last moment. A lap later, James (5) tried a move to the inside of the Esses on Cassidy (66) but she pinned him to the inside, leaving him to have to go the long way around the right-hander.
Starting in 4th, Cassidy (66) had a good start off the line but again, coming around Senna, she goes round in a spin and drops to the back of the pack. Then, 2 laps later, Harvey (44) ran wide coming out of Paddock, leaving Cassidy (66) to take 5th from him. From the first lap, William (56) was applying the pressure onto Reece (27). Coming into 180, William (56) goes for a deep lunge on Reece (27) but the championship leader holds him off well and keeps the lead up to the Warren. William (56) was itching to get past and drove very well but despite this, he took the chequered flag in 2nd.
1st – Reece Bright (27)
2nd – William Tilden Bloom (56)
3rd – James Drabwell (5)
4th – Alfie Wilkes (22)
5th – Cassidy Beeton (66)
For the final round of the year, surprisingly, there were only 5 entrants. Despite this, there was still healthy competition between them all. Championship winner, Arundel Hughes (24) rounded off the year with maximum points and proved he deserves the title. Fighting for 2nd in the championship were Dylan Tatham (55) and Lewis Fagg (64). The pair were very close almost all day and kept us guessing for who would be the runner up. The fastest lap was set by Arundel Hughes (24) in the final with a 40.492 when the track was at it’s best condition of the day.