A Fiery 'A' Final up North

2013-12-09 09:17:19.2

It was a day of mixed fortunes up north yesterday, as Eddie made his second 'A' final in three races despite several kart problems.

The day got off to a fantastic start when Eddie made one of his brilliant starts to go from seventh on the grid to third at turn 1. This became second half way around the lap, after outbraking another kart into the hairpin. This was a position that Eddie held until two laps from the end before dropping to third.

Heat 2 was a little harder. Starting at the back of the grid, Eddie struggled with a kart that lacked 'top-end' and struggled down the straight and also had a tendancy to turn left. Despite this, he managed to climb up to ninth.

Heat 3 was a bit of a disaster. Starting from pole position, Eddie was jumped at the start and then failed to slow down sufficiently into turn 1. He struggled with a soft brake pedal for the entire heat and eventually finished 8th.

"I was amazed to see the second place guy actually ahead of me at the start." claimed Eddie. "The rules clearly state that a driver will be penalised if he crosses the line ahead of the driver he was behind - did he get penalised?..."

The smaller than usual field meant that Eddie scraped into the A final, qualifying 20th in the 26 kart grid.

Again driving a kart that was not handling quite right, Eddie got stuck in the mid field scrap that ran from 5th down to 21st. The race was stopped after Dave Lewis rolled his kart on lap 5 (Eddie just misssing a flying wheel).

At the restart, Eddie again got involved in the mid field scrap. He was running 16th and 17th for most of the race until the last lap. His kart had been suffering from a mixture of throttle problems and damage from contact for the entire race. He drove the last lap with his right rear wheel on fire and lost a few places avoiding two karts tangling on the last corner in front of him. Despite this, he managed a very encouraging 19th place.

"It was really hard going in the final. The kart wouldn't fire up coming out of the pits and when it did, the throttle kept sticking open. It made it very difficult to drive as I was having to drive on the brakes too much.

"I then had to contend with an unbalanced rear after the restart. I was having a wheel to wheel race with a couple of karts and one of them hit me quite hard at the rear at turn 2. It wasn't enough to take me out (for a change) but it did some serious damage to the rear end. Id on't exactly know what was wrong other than it felt like something was rubbing against the wheel. It turned out that my wheel was actually on fire on the last lap..."

Despite some rather large setbacks, Eddie has said that he is encouraged by his performance.

"Considering that I have only been here once before and that was two years ago, I think I drove well. To start from the A final despite having two heats with dodgy karts is quite good - I'm more than happy!

"I know that the smaller field played to my advantage, but I had more than my fair share of bad luck to compensate."

"I think that without those problems I could easily have been in the top ten today."