The first round of the 2015 Prokart SSS Endurance Series kicked off at Vereeniging Kart Circuit on Sunday 1 March 2015, with a win for #64 2P racing. Twenty seven teams lined up for the start of round 1 with 2P racing annexing pole position with a time of 56.59s followed by #5 RKT1 in 56.78s, #54 Ghost Karting in 56.8s, Containerforce in 56.865s and in fifth #35 Team Logan in 56.932s.
So the scene was set for a fraught first few laps. At fall of flag #13Containerforce shaded #54 Ghost Karting off the line to move up to third. Graeme Neilson later complaining about his weight making him slow off the line. Perhaps he should talk to Sheldon of 2P racing for their team diet regime. On lap two #13 Containerforce took the gap left by #5 RKT1 going into turn 1 and a lap later made a move on #64 2P racing to take the lead. Whislt everyon was scrapping behind #13 Containerforce managed to eke out a gap of about 2 secs. The lead was short-lived when realising weights had been left in the pits force #13 Containerforce into an early pit stop. That started a run of misfortune which ultimately led to disqualification for being underweight on two occasions.
Lesson number 1 learned: Lead makes for much better ballast than fuel. This is a lesson a number of teams should consider as no fewer than 6 teams were penalised for underweight infringements.
After the frenetic opening laps things settled down with newcomers #212 Hooligans, #19 Kartinator setting a steady pace and moving up the order as some of the front-runners ran into problems. #43 Southbank, without star driver Sebastian Lanzetti were steadily, if unspectacularly, climbing up the order.
#77 were almost penalized for having more than three people assisting in the pits, but on investigation it was found to be necessary to help Clinton Parsons, a seasoned long circuit competitor out the kart. Seems endurance karting is somewhat more strenuous than one expected.
Quite a number of teams suffered from mechanical issues which indicates that preparation for this first 6 hour event was not quite up to standard. Lesson number 2 learned: There is no substitute for preparation.
In the closing stages of the race, #5 RKT1 were in a comfortable lead of about 40 seconds, over #64 2P Racing, when a loose rear bumper occasioned a visit to the pits for repairs, which dropped them back to third behind #1 Kart Shoppe. #1 Kart Shoppe had unobtrusively climbed through the field with a trouble-free run.
So after 6 hours of racing #64 2P racing ran winners by one lap over #1 Kart Shoppe, followed by #5 RKT1 a further lap behind.
Lots of sore bodies and lots of fun .
For full set of results, championship and index of performance standings follow this link.