Harvey Takes Third In KF2 At WSK Opening Round


Jack Harvey bounced back from his recent non-finish in the Margutti Trophy by taking third place in the opening round of the Winning Series of Karting (WSK) at La Conca in southern Italy at the weekend. The result puts the 14-year-old reigning European Champion third in the KF2 class standings.

The Newark Steel backed Birel Motorsport driver went into the event full of confidence after a superb run the week before at the Margutti event. After a frustrating time during some of the early event testing, the Birel team worked incredibly hard to give Jack just the set-up on the kart he was looking for. Two fourth and two second places in his heats were enough to give him a second row starting position for the points-scoring pre-final.

A great start allowed him to slot into third place as the field came out of the first corner and over the course of the 16-lap race he was able to get up to second place, finishing less than a second behind the eventual winner.

His result put him on the front row for the grand final and in the early stages of the race he was able to start closing in on the leading racer. However, Jack was forced into a battle with the two chasing drivers, which eventually meant he was forced to drop back a place, losing ground on the two guys now ahead of him in the process and out of contention for victory.

A superb drive to the chequered flag meant that he was still able to claim the final podium spot and his two top-three results mean that he left the Italian circuit third in the points.

"Second and third in the two point-scoring races over the course of the weekend is a great result," said Jack. "The meeting started off really well for us in testing on Thursday, but we struggled a bit on Friday and I thought that we might be in for a tough weekend."

"But I've got to thank everyone in the Birel team, they worked so hard to give me the best kart possible. Everyone was fantastic over the weekend and I was able to drive as hard as possible every time I went out. You can't ask for more as a driver when the team is working that hard for you. I'm pleased I was able to get some good results to repay them," he added.

Jack now has several weeks before his next European event. However, more testing to stay at the sharp end of the KF2 field as well as having a crack at the MSA KF2 'O' plate event at the end of the month will keep him busy before he heads out to Lonato at the beginning of May.

"It's been a hectic start to the 2008 season for me so far," he said. "There is a break now before the next WSK event, but I'm going to be out on track elsewhere as I want to stay as sharp and focused as possible for the rest of the season," he added.

Ref: JHKF20806

Harvey Denied Margutti Double At Parma


Lincolnshire kart racer Jack Harvey was denied victory in the Margutti Trophy event, at the Parma circuit in Italy, at the weekend, when an engine problem forced for the reigning European champion to retire while leading the final.

The 14 year-old Lincoln Minster School pupil, who is an official Birel Motorsport driver, went into the event aiming for a repeat victory, after claiming the KF3 class title a year ago. A great run through the heats meant a second row starting position for the semi-final, where he lead home a British 1-2-3 to claim a front row slot for the grand final.

As the red lights went out for the 20-lap final, Jack lost one place and dropped to third as the field dived through the first corner. He managed to stay in touch with the two drivers in front, though and within a handful of laps had moved into the lead.

He immediately set about stamping his authority on the rest of the field with an extremely rapid pace, setting the fastest lap in the process while pulling away at almost two tenths of a second every lap. However, just before half distance Jack's ambition of taking back-to-back Margutti titles came to a halt as his engine let go.

A disappointed Harvey was left frustrated at missing out on what seemed to be his first major win of 2008, but took consolation in his pace over the course of the weekend.

"Obviously, I'm really disappointed to end this weekend in this way," he said. "I really wanted to win the Margutti Trophy, it's a prestigious title to win and I came out to the event with exactly that aim. It was a good meeting for me right up until that point too. I knew before the weekend that I would need to be on the front or second row in the final to have a chance of taking the win as the starts at Parma can be tricky."

"The kart was really good through the heats and I won my semi-final so I was exactly where I wanted to be. Everything felt really good when I moved into the lead and I was comfortable with my pace and was pulling away from the guys behind me, then something went in the engine and I was out immediately. It's definitely more frustrating after being in that position in the final," he added.

Jack has no time to think about his missed silverware, though, as the opening round of his main European championship, the Winning Series of Karting (WSK) gets underway at La Conca next weekend, meaning he is straight back into action against his European rivals and he's certainly keen to bounce back with victory at the southern Italian venue.

"I want to go out at the first WSK round and win," he said. "I want a really good event for the team as they're working so hard to give me the best kart possible and it would really pick us all up after the frustration this weekend. I'm certainly going to be out there to go for victory again," he added.

Ref: JHKF20805

Harvey Aiming For Margutti Glory


European kart racing champion, Jack Harvey, heads back to the scene of his first international title next weekend, when he enters the Margutti Trophy at the Parma circuit in northern Italy.

Jack will return to the event as the current KF3 class champion. However, with the move up to the KF2 category this year, he has his sights set on repeating his victory of 12 months ago, especially after a strong showing at the recent Winter Cup meeting.

"I'm really looking forward to the Margutti event," said Jack. "Obviously it was where I took my first title last year and it was a brilliant weekend for me then. I'm certainly going back out to the event with the intention to try and leave with my name on the winner's trophy again, this time in the KF2 class," he added.

A fantastic drive - from the back of the field - throughout the heats and finals in the Winter Cup showed that the 14-year-old Alpinestars backed factory Birel motorsport racer has what it takes to compete right at the sharp end of the senior class. Jack and the Birel team have been working hard in the weeks in between the two events to give him the best chance possible to go for victory next weekend.

Jack will also be keen to be right on the pace from the moment he takes to the track, with the opening round of the Winning Series of Karting (WSK) taking place just one week after the Margutti event. He knows that whatever speed and set-up he and the team have at Parma will carry on through into the start of his championship season.

"We've been working really hard since before the Winter Cup and everything has gone really well. I'm happy with how the team works and I know there is still some time left in me to find as I learn more about the kart and how it reacts to changes and different conditions during the races, which will especially help in the middle of the season when it's hotter."

"But, to be at the sharp end already and to have a kart that is consistent and that I can do what I want with is great. It means that I can only get faster as the season goes on. I know that whatever pace we have at Parma will put us in the same place at the first WSK round as there is only a week in between them. I'm going into both events with confidence, though. I know I've got a chance to go out and win again and it's what I'm going to be trying to go at every meeting this year," he added.

"I'm not under any illusions that it's going to be easy, but I said at the start of the year that I wanted to repeat my results from 2007 and this is the first event where I can go for that goal," he said.

Jack will take to the track from Thursday next week, with the heats taking place on Saturday and the final on Sunday afternoon.

Ref: JHKF20804