Controversy, Success and Disappointment

2013-12-09 09:17:19.2

Eddie competed in his first professional race in over 2 years today at Buckmore Park and succeeded in drawing attention to himself in more ways than one.

At the start of the day there were rumblings around the paddock that Eddie would not even be allowed to start because he weighed in 1.5kg under the minimum weight limit. Eddie was allowed to race in the end but had to carry a weight penalty (see separate story).

The competition at Buckmore Park was fierce and the driving was at a really high level. Eddie started a respectable 13th on the grid for his first heat and drove conservatively to finish 14th. In his second heat, Eddie started 4th on the grid, 2 places behind local Witham racer and defending champion James Winslow. Local rivalry got the better of Eddie, however, and he spun whilst lying fifth and finished fourteenth again.

The third heat was remarkable. Starting down in 10th place on the grid, Eddie stormed through the field when the green lights came on. His cause was helped when it started raining towards the end, and using his superb wet weather skills, Eddie drove brilliantly to get up to second place. With the leader only a fraction of a second ahead, and with a win on his debut meeting in his sights, Eddie slowed on the last lap with an engine misfire. Third place was enough to put him second on the grid for the C Final.

In the final, Eddie made a good start but lost two places when the leader went sideways at the first hairpin and Eddie ran wide in avoidance. Eddie managed to gain another place and was running third. The track was by now treacherous as the rain was coming down harder than ever. At about half distance and with a place in the B Final a real possibility, Eddie again spun at the first hairpin and finished a very disappointing 22nd.

Asked what he thought of his first race back after such a long absence, Eddie replied

“It was very encouraging, I was not very far off the pace and was running near or at the front despite having a weight penalty and consequently a badly handling kart. I ruined my own chances by making a few silly mistakes but this is motor racing and I will just have to not make those mistakes again”.

It was not a happy ending for either of the Witham boys as James Winslow also finished low down after being pushed into a spin in the A final whilst running fifth. Eddie showed that there are no problems between the two as he congratulated James on a fighting drive.