• Lando Norris and Philip Rawson share FKS Mini Max wins at Ellough Park.• Victorious duo open early season points advantage.
Against a backdrop of skydivers literally dropping onto the circuit, one of the numerous special touches puton by host circuit Ellough Park, the third and fourth rounds of the 2012 Formula Kart Stars Mini MaxChampionship saw more close and exciting racing on what is probably the most technical circuit the driversin the Formula One Management backed Championship will visit all year.
Looking to emulate former Formula Kart Stars champions ands current Formula One superstars LewisHamilton and Paul Di Resta, 15 Mini Max drivers not only had to cope with the twists and turns of the Suffolkvenue but also some extremely abrasive track conditions that put a premium on tyre management as well asraw speed.
Formula Kart Stars Rotax Mini Max ChampionshipNot even the improved and highly popular TAG Heuer timing system could separate Lando Norris (RLRacing Department) and Philip Rawson (AIM Motorsport) in Saturday’s qualifying session with Rawsongetting the nod for pole position by virtue of having a quicker second-best lap.
Rawson would go on to win both heat races although his path to victory was far from straightforward withNorris and Connor Mills (Chris Rogers Motorsport) chasing Rawson over the line in heat one. Rawson’swinning margin over Mills in heat two was just half a second but Mills was subsequently excluded on atechnicality, handing second spot to Ryan Anderton (Coles Racing). Mills was now faced with the reality ofhaving to count his zero points score towards his championship total and would also have to start the finalfrom last on the grid.
Rawson and Norris escaped at the start of the final and pulled out a healthy lead before Norris grabbed firstplace with a couple of laps to go. As Norris defended, Anderton and a recovering Mills closed in but Norriswasn’t to be denied and took the chequered flag three tenths of a second ahead.On Sunday morning Norris picked up where he left off on Saturday evening and took pole position from JackMcCarthy (Project One) although in the heat races Rawson and Mills would again emerge as his closestchallengers.
Norris won the opening heat by four tenths over Rawson with Mills in close company and Mills ran Norriseven closer in heat two as he concentrated on moving back up the championship table. Norris prevailedeventually but only by one tenth of a second with McCarthy and Rawson next in line, several seconds inarrears.
From pole position Norris took an early lead in the final but Rawson was soon sitting in his slipstream withMills a close third. After passing Rawson late in Saturday’s final to take the win Norris had to sample a tasteof his own medicine this time as Rawson dived through in the closing stages to score his first FKS victory.Mills had to make do with third place again with Anderton setting the fastest lap of the race en route tofourth.
In the overall points standings Norris extends his lead to eleven points over Rawson with Anderton anincreasingly distant third and Mills now only tenth, 71 points behind Norris having moved up six placesthanks to his Sunday performances.
ResultsFKS Rotax Mini Max Championship Round 31. Lando Norris2. Philip Rawson3. Ryan Anderton4. Connor Mills5. Gaby Weyer
FKS Rotax Mini Max Championship Round 41. Philip Rawson2. Lando Norris3. Connor Mills4. Ryan Anderton5. Ryan Young