|26 January 2017|
Extracts from the January edition, issue #8 of the Deadly Newsletter. For the rest of the newsletter (Newcaslte track preview for AKC round 1), click HERE.
- AKC / Drop Down bumpers - Having never used the drop down bumper system and hearing mixed reports from drivers around the World, I'm interested to see how the introduction plays out. I feel as though a lot more drivers are pushing from behind which isn't great, so long as it doesn't impede on hard racing I think it's a good move for future racing. The junior drivers will find this the most frustrating to begin with.
- Emerald Kart Club - Ever since the plans for this club were publicised, it has always shown potential to hold a major racing event. Now that the AKC will travel to Central QLD I believe that the club will put in the hard yards to have the track in tip-top condition and a new outlay provides drivers with a new challenge.
- Junior Sprockets Program - By time people read this, young drivers around the country may have had their first taste in a kart. The program is a great initiative in the sport to get more kids in the seat and experience driving in a controlled environment. What will be interesting is whether the participants will get into the sport. I still think there is merit in having the Junior Sprockets program utilising slightly older equipment and Comer S-80's for example (most of us started in second hand gear) to give the families a cheaper alternative into the sport whilst also offering people who have that equipment lying around a chance to offload it. Then we could introduce a Comer only category at club events to not scare off the newbies.
As we head into the first of our two major championships the Rotax Pro Tour & Australian Kart Championships, one thing will come into play during the end of these events; tyre wear.
As we've introduced grippier tyres in the past couple of years, tyres are generally wearing out at a faster rate giving some drivers an advantage at different stages of a weekend.
What we don't want to see in the early parts of a race weekend is the tyre graining due to a number of issues including: too high tyre pressure, too much understeer, too much negative camber. Drivers will find it difficult to maintain their performance over the course of a weekend if these appear in the opening heat races.
As a driver you will also need to assess as to whether you drive at a 100% in the heat races, or drive more conservatively and save something in the tank for the pointy end of the weekend. With points being awarded for the heats, some drivers will see it as a benefit to push in the heats and maximise the points whilst falling short come the final.
Newcastle is generally very harsh on tyres so it will be interesting to see how the weekend pans out.