SLATER STEALS THE SHOW, AFTER MACINTYRE CROWNED VICE BRITISH CHAMPION
A weekend of so close yet so far was the case for William Macintyre at the final round of the British Championship, held at PF International in Grantham. Macintyre started the weekend 9 points behind championship leader Arvid Lindblad, however all was to play for over the course of the 3 days.
Date 30th September 2018
Event Super One Series
In Timed Qualifying on Friday afternoon, Maxwell Dodds posted the fastest time, ahead of Macintyre and Freddie Slater. Lindblad could only manage 5th, with the Fusion duo of Vinnie Phillips (6th) and Aiden Neate (7th) immediately behind. The remaining team drivers of Leo Robinson (11th), Oliver Wright (13th), Archie Clark (19th) Bart Harrison (21st) and Edu Robinson (25th) all were looking to make progress in the upcoming heats on Saturday.
Knowing the task ahead, Macintyre certainly went about it the right way after he took the win in Heat 1, with team mate Slater finishing 2nd, and Lindblad 3rd. It was the end of all hopes for Dodds, after a coming together with Slater meant he dropped out of the championship running, finishing down in 24th. Phillips secured 7th, followed by Neate in 8th, whilst Clark climbed 5 positions to 14th. However, L. Robinson was unfortunate to pick up a nose cone penalty, after originally finishing in 7th, later being demoted to 20th after his 10 seconds were added on. Just behind was Harrison in 22nd, and E. Robinson in 23rd.
In Heat 2, Macintyre dominated proceedings as he took his second heat win of the day, achieving maximum points possible in his quest to close the gap on the championship lead. Lindblad was awarded a 10 second nose cone penalty to his finishing position (4th), therefore resulting in a 20th place and further more handing over the championship lead to Macintyre. Phillips was having a good last round, as he managed to come home in 3rd, whilst Slater slipped to 7th after some fantastic defensive driving to help out team mate Macintyre at the front. Wright climbed 4 places to 9th, whilst Clark again rose 8 places through the order to 11th. Harrison had a better run in Heat 2, as he finished 17th, just ahead of E. Robinson (19th). L. Robinson was awarded another 10 second nose cone penalty, resulting in a 21st, and Neate (24th) became part of the ‘penalty crew’, as was also handed a 1 lap penalty for an alleged incident on track with Lindblad.
At the start of Final 1, Macintyre led from Pole Position into turn 1. Team mate Phillips started 3rd, and into turn 2 made a move for the lead allowing the ORM duo of Harley Keeble and Harry Bergoyne Jnr through as well. The later unfortunately both collided with Macintyre, causing him to spin and drop to the back of the pack, with all of Saturdays hard work undone in a flash, handing advantage back to Lindblad, who went on to finish 4th. A couple of laps later, as Macintyre was working his way back through the pack, a tiny mistake meant he dropped to the back of the pack again, this time ending all hopes of a British Championship. Despite going on to finish in 12th, to keep the championship alive, he had to finish no more than 8th position, therefore crowning Lindblad the champion. To make matters even worse, Slater (2nd) was awarded a 2 lap penalty for 2 separate incidents on track, therefore meaning he would have to start the Final from last on the grid.
With the championship all wrapped up by Lindblad, runner up was all to play for, between Dodds and Macintyre. With Dodds starting on Pole Position after his victory in the first final, and Macintyre starting down in 12th, it was advantage Dodds. However, Macintyre had other ideas, as he charged through to 5th on the opening lap, and was on the hunt for leader Dodds. It wasn’t long before he got there either, with the pace of the Fusion driver far more superior to the karts in front. Meanwhile, making his way from the back row of the grid was Slater, and by the half way point of the race, he was inside the top 10 and hunting down the leaders. As the race progressed, so did the tension on track, with Phillips also getting in amongst the battle for the lead. With only a couple of laps remaining, Slater had caught the lead pack, and made his move for the lead on Phillips with 2 laps to go, whilst Macintyre was doing everything he could to hold on to 3rd. As the chequered flag was waved, Slater had put on the drive of his career so far, as he completed the impossible, racing from the back of the grid to win the Final, ahead of Macintyre who pipped Phillips (3rd) to 2nd with a couple of corners remaining. Slightly further down was Wright in 10th, with Neate in 11th, Clark 13th, L. Robinson 18th, Harrison 19th and E.Robinson 21st. As the championship came to a close, Macintyre (2), Slater (4), Neate (5) and Phillips (7) all achieved a seeded number, reflecting on their achievements throughout the 2018 season.
Pictures – Kartpix.net