30 July 2012

Asian Karting Open Championship 2012 – Round 2

Jon Braves the Storm in Philippines to Clinch His First Asian Karting Open Championship Podium

Asian Karting Open Championship 2012 – Round 2
28-29 July, Manila, Philippines

Welcome to Philippines) Mabuhay!

Jon's first race in the Philippines was expected to be very challenging and true enough, there were plenty of obstacles. On top of facing an unfamiliar environment and new track layout, he also had to overcome a persistent storm on the race weekend, which made it a really difficult race for everyone. During the two-and-a-half days of practices and set-up, Jon’s pace in the dry was evenly matched at the top. The team had high hopes that he will be challenging for a win this time round.

On Saturday, Jon qualified for the second position under dry conditions. He had a good start and finished first in Heat 1. However, Heat 2 and Heat 3 were raced in wet weather with puddles of water all over the track and he finished third and fourth respectively.

Combining the points earned from all three heats, Jon started in second position for the Pre-Final race under wet conditions on Sunday morning. During the race, the pole driver managed to pull away while Jon and Dharma were fighting for positions. On the last lap, a minor collision caused Jon to eventually finish in seventh position.

"looks more like Jet-ski but Jon is very brave there. 
quote courtesy of Kartmaster Drakar Racing Team

It was a long wait of more than four hours for the Final race. Ten minutes before the start, the track was still wet but drying fast. This time, the mechanics were on standby with both wet and dry tyres but five minutes before the race started, it started raining heavily.

After 10 laps of the 22 lap race, Jon had already overtook three drivers but towards the end, he dropped back to fifth position and maintained this position till the end. The local Filipino drivers and mechanics are very experienced with the Carmona track in the wet and the results showed.

Standing on the AKOC podium for the first time while holding the hard earned trophy proudly in his hands, the best race is yet to come for Jon.

picture courtesy of Kartmaster Drakar Racing Team
"I have been working very hard to earn a place on the podium on the Asian level and I am glad I did it,” said Jon. “But, to be honest with myself, this was hardly my best race. I am capable of much better performances. The setting for my kart was good. I was going fine until I got bumped out of the track a little. But hey, no complaints. I will do better next time.”

“Putting aside the bad weather, the whole experience in Philippines was fulfilling and great. All thanks to Ms Carrie and Mr JP for arranging our logistics and transportation. Thanks again to Kartmaster Drakar Racing Team Principals, Uncle Raymond and Roland for their support and 

We will be back for round 3 of AKOC from 1-2 September and we were told that most likely, the location will be changed from Sepang, Malaysia to the Philippines again.

more pictures of the race can be viewed here...(Jon's Photo Gallery) and here...(Kartmaster Drakar Racing Team's facebook).

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