New Generation For Intrepid Force Rotax

press release

Last weekend marked a brand new generation for the Intrepid Force Rotax Team, as they competed at the opening round of the Austrian Rotax Max Challenge with their biggest driver line-up to date.

The first leg of the national championship took place at the popular ‘Speed Arena’ circuit at Rechnitz, close to the Slovenian and Hungarian borders. IFR had six young drivers contesting the series, which they have successfully dominated in Junior and Senior Max to a degree over the past few years. It was the first outing together for the exciting new team and the results promising, making it a positive start to their Austrian campaign.

intrpid force rotax
Above: The team’s senior line-up in the national Rotax championship includes drivers from 14 to 18 years, with a mix of some more and less experienced. (L to R) Imre Birizdo, Niki Laa, Laura Kraihamer and Felix Wimmer
pic - VPD Marketing / Jenni Wade

Above: The Junior Max duo of Tobias Weichenberger & Corinna Kamper who were impressive in their first race for the season in Austria
pic - VPD Marketing / Jenni Wade

IFR’s Imre Birizdo of Hungary aquaplaned his way onto the podium in Seniors by winning the final race of the opening round of the series, to finish 3rd overall. The 15-year-old was not as confident as he would have liked of getting the results, after finding himself just a fraction off the pace to be second in qualifying behind New Zealand's Josh Hart, as he was in Hungary the weekend before. Struggling a little with chassis set-up early on, the Hungarian driver excelled as the heavens opened in the last race of the day.

Also running seniors, Niki Laa was consistent and used his head wisely to hang on for 4th behind his team-mate, as the first of the local drivers in the competitive line-up. He was unable to pass the kart in front as the rains became torrential, although he tried on several occasions. It was a great effort by Niki, who is just 14 years of age and definitely a likely contender for the Austrian title.

Above: Three times Austrian Max Champ and former World Rotax DD2 number 1 Ben George (as part of the IFR team of mechanics) is seen here giving Niki Laa a few tips before the timed practice session
pic - VPD Marketing / Jenni Wade

The drive of the final had to go to the team’s former junior driver Laura Kraihamer, starting off grid 15 then going off-track to rejoin at the back of the 22-kart field. She eventually fought her way through the field brilliantly to take 5th. As the rain got heavier, Laura got even closer to the front-runners.

Undoubtedly the least experienced of IFR’s senior drivers is Felix Wimmer, who was racing at the Rechnitz circuit for the first time. He progressed well with every session and considering being disadvantaged for not having driven there before, was quite satisfied with his weekend for 17th.

In Junior Max, Corinna Kamper and Tobias Weichenberger showed some obvious improvement from last year’s championship to run 3rd and 4th respectively in race 1. They were both very determined to do well and had the speed to achieve this. In fact, Tobias clocked the fastest lap of the race in that session. Unfortunately, the final was not as good as they'd hoped but still maintained top 10 finishes to get some valuable points. At the end of the day, Cori was classified 5th and Tobias 6th overall.

Above: Six drivers at the Austrian event was the most the team have run to-date
pic - VPD Marketing / Jenni Wade

In the championship tally, Cori is placed 3rd on the table going into round 2 in Germany next month. Another series within this championship is the 'Junior Classic', which applies to the OSK Federation Club Sport licence holders. In this class, Tobias was awarded the trophy for 2nd.

Round two of the Austrian Max Challenge will be held at the Ampfing in Germany on May 23 & 24.

2008 season info & updates will be available at the team’s official website –

Above: With few races under his belt, IFR aim to get Felix Wimmer “up to speed” in 2008
pic - VPD Marketing / Jenni Wade