"Lion Kart" - Jack Perkins

Published: 20 May 2003

Pictured: HSV.

We were greeted by rain when we got to Coffs Harbour Thursday night however the skies cleared for Friday’s free practice sessions. The track was still wet in some places but we went in just about all of the sessions gaining valuable track time and getting the kart to lap the 1050 metre Raleigh layout in low 47second lap times.

Saturday morning again brought us sunshine and our first 15-minute qualifying session. In my first run I did a 46.632 and was on pole for the early part of the session. We came in and made some changes and we couldn’t better our previous time. None of the 31 drivers went quicker in the second qualifying session the top 28 were separated by just 1 second. My time was only good enough for 17th.

This brought us to Heat #1. I made a good start and was in 14th place by turn #6 until another competitor drove straight over the back of me knocking off my radiator and causing enough damage for me to retire from the race.

I then started Heat #2 from grid 30 and made my way up to around 25th until the power valve in the engine malfunctioned which meant it wasn’t working and I had to settle for 22nd.

Heat 3 and I was on grid 27 and made my way up to 15th until I made a driving error that placed my back in 23rd.

Luckily championship points aren’t up for offer in the three heats – they are only available for the pre-final and final.

I started the pre final from grid 29 and made a fairly good start. I was in about 18th when I was involved in a crash which meant the battery came free from it mount causing it to flap between my legs. This made the throttle stick into most corners. I ended up 21st.

This then brought me to the all-important final and I started 21st. I made a great start and was up to 17th. Surging through the field with great pace. I was into 15th and catching the next group until another competitor gave me a big nudge under brakes into turn out forcing me off the track and back into 23rd. There I would finish because there was damage with the kart – making the lap times 4 to 5 tenths slower than before the accident.

The person who shunted me off ended up 11th or 12th so I believe I was in for a strong result but I copped it on the chin and I am now looking forward to the rest of the championship. It’s obviously a disappointing way to begin the championship but I believe this is the benefit of being able to drop your worst round.

Final Results:

1st - Andrew Thompson, 2nd - Wesley May, 3rd - Jason Varley, 4th - Troy Woolston, 23rd - Jack Perkins

The next round is in Geelong and the 14th and 15th of June and I am really looking forward to this round because we have done a lot of testing around their and our lap times have been very quick.

Thanks to my sponsors:

HSV, ACL, Sniper, Perkins Technologies, SPY, Revolution Racegear, CC Racing, Geoff King Holden - (for the use of a loan vehicle).

Thanks again,

Jack Perkins

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