AUSTRALIA CONFIRMS ITS PLACE ON THE WORLD KARTING STAGE
Australia has been confirmed as one of the world’s strongest karting nations with the country’s team of drivers at the Vortex RoK International Cup in Italy securing the Nations Cup Title on the weekend.
Last weekend’s success means that Australia currently holds the Nations Cup Title of two of the world’s top one-make International karting events – the Vortex RoK International Cup and the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Final (won by Australia’s team last November in Al Ain, UAE).
In an event where all drivers used identical Vortex engines, the Australian contingent was led by Sydneysider Andrew Kahl in the junior ranks where he finished an impressive fourth in a field of 73 competitors from various parts of the world.
After starting fourth, Kahl fought back from some contact on the opening lap of the final to record the strong result, while a first corner incident eliminated fellow Sydney driver Chris Sandrone, who started from position eight.
The third Sydney teenager in the race, Cody Gillis, was the hard charger of the final. He started from position 23 in the 34-kart field before showing tremendous speed and poise to maneuver his way to eighth place at the chequered flag.
“I was very proud, together with the entire Australian team to win the Nations Cup. With everybody using the same engine and tyres, the racing was very close and hard, so it was great that we were able to win the title,” said Kahl.
“To finish fourth in an international final while racing an engine I had no experience with was awesome. I was the first non-Italian home, which was pretty cool as well.
“I loved the Vortex engine and the Bridgestone tyre combination and would like to thank Greg Smith and the team at Tony Kart Australia along with the guys at Karting World for making this opportunity possible.”
Melbourne’s Travis Millar started the Super Rok class final 17th, only to have another kart drive over his kart on the first corner. Fortunately, apart from some cuts on his hands, Travis escaped injury, however kart damage meant his campaign ended early.
Another to have a hard luck story was Western Australian Kurt Kostecki. He suffered a DNF in his final Junior RoK heat race, which meant that he missed the cut for the main final by a solitary point. Despite this, he showed good speed to win the Bridgestone Final.
Victorian Jack Bell, finished second in the T-Kart Final in the Mini RoK category.
The International competition for Australian drivers continues this weekend with the Kosmic Racing Australia team flying the flag at the World Championship event in Macau and a group of drivers also competing at the IAME International Final in France.