|Carl, Adam and Craig Stirling showed their star quality at last Sunday’s (15 June) third round of the British Super 1 kart Championship.|
One of the favourite tracks on the calendar, Rowrah’s mixture of high-speed straights, testing corners and tricky chicanes is a true driver’s circuit.
Small wonder then perhaps, that Carl won one of the two KF3 finals, whilst his elder brother Craig, set the lap record in KF2.
In the packed junior category, the youngest of the three brothers, 13-year old Adam fared less well - and was at a loss for the reason why. During Saturday practice he had been quick but his early speed eluded him on race-day - “I just don’t know what went wrong” he said. “I went from being on the pace to nearly a second off it. I was driving well and not making too many mistakes.”
Just three tenths of a second faster than Adam in his qualifying session, British Open Champion Carl was further up the order in 14th position, but confident that he could gain higher places in the races.
After a hard fought battle to work his way into the lead, Carl took a deserved first final victory - and also racked-up 50 valuable championship points. Behind him, Adam was the victim of a first corner crash and having dropped to last, was unable to recover further than 22nd place.
Showing his increasing maturity and the fact that he’s now beginning to think about the title, Carl sensibly opted for points rather than outright glory in the 2nd final. He still found himself boarding the ferry home clutching another trophy – having taken 3rd at the chequered flag and the championship lead.
He said: “The best result would’ve been two wins - but consistent finishes make the difference if you want to win the title. I always go to a race aiming to win, but points finishes are equally important. If I can keep finishing on the podium, that’ll win me the Championship.”
In contrast to Carl’s obvious delight, Adam endured another difficult race but refused to be downcast: “It was quite disappointing really for me, but I’ll bounce back at the next race!”
In KF2, 16-year old Craig was experiencing the fortunes of both his younger brothers. In his second heat, he shattered the lap record and was justifiably delighted: “My time was four tenths of a second faster than the previous record. My motor just had unbelievable bottom end.”
But after his and the Millennium Racing team’s elation, came disappointment. Having qualified well for the first of two finals, Craig suffered from clutch gremlins – dropping from 4th to 11th but still scored a hatful of championship points.
In the following race, a crash dropped him from 10th to 20th - but a gritty drive saw him pass nine drivers to secure more points for his title bid. “I’m happy to be in 5th place overall. Obviously I wanted to leave Rowrah leading the Championship but 5th is okay”.