|Posted by Carl Vella on March 4, 2016 at 3:25 AM|
Two more days and another year of the EKL starts.
So much has changed since i got together with Sam and Josh in December 2012. Year 1, the 3 of us struggling to find a teammate so we could even take part as the rules stipulated teams of 4.
4 years later and i find myself sitting once again at team hq with Sam and Josh once again faced with a team selection headache. Only this year rather than worrying about finding one driver, its trying to decide what to do with 23 drivers.
The solution involves the entry of a whopping 7 teams. Can we cope? We will find out on Sunday but theres every reason to believe we will. Its not just team size which has grown, our general organisation is far better, we have everything in place to ensure a great days racing, we also have a few new toys to ensure we do so in a bit of comfort and for the next round at Red Lodge something to make us feel even more at home than we already ought to given its home to a good 8-10 of us who will probably take part. But thats for the next round blog.
For Whilton first up is the original #9 Hornets kart. This year it'll be driven by Sam, Josh and Kyle. We finished 7th last year, you have to say replacing me with Sam is a pretty major upgrade and the three of them really are targetting a highest ever finish.
The #19 Buzzin Hornets kart will be driven all year by James, Lewis and David. All 3 look very similar weights, all 3 have driven these karts a lot and all 3 really are capable of shoving it into the top 10 overall and that has to be their aim.
The #29 Fighting Hornets kart remains in the hands of Steve, he will be joined by Calum and given they prefer teams of 4 this will be the first kart that will be filled with 4 drivers should i have enough. For Whilton they are joined by 1 time Horrnet Boyd and first time out rookie Jamie, a little nervous but he was setting eye catching times in practice and it'll be interesting to see how he takes to a new series.
First of our new teams #39 the Raging Hornets will be driven by Louis, Richard and myself. Louis is running a full year with us and with the experience gained last year will surely be looking to turn his high finish from last year of 2nd into a win. Richard will be joining us for Whilton and PFI, he has always been mightily quick. Its not a lineup thats going to hang in there all year but i am quite hopeful we can stick ourselves into the top 10 at the rounds we are competing in together.
Team #49 EK Hornets will be run by John Chappell. John drove with us at Lydd last year and wanted the opportunity to run his own team with us in 2016. No doubt they will make a lot of the same mistakes we did in their first year together his team remains something of an unknown quantity to me but they are likely to be made up of drivers who have raced one another for a few years so it'll be good to see them making strides up the championship.
Team #59 is our 7th team, newly named the Mighty Hornets. Andrew, Jonathon and Tim are driving this one for its debut, all 3 have driven a round for us in the past but all 3 boast plenty of experience between them and again if they avoid making any rookie mistakes theres every reason to feel they can put themselves into the top 10.
Finally but by no means last is #99 Giant Hornets. I always have a soft spot for this kart, its my favourite panel and i won in it as well. This year its in some mighty hands. Alex needs little introduction, he would waltz into any team on the grid and they would welcome him with open arms. Joining him is Dan who has driven with us for many years now, another driver looking to turn a PB of P2 into a P1 this year. Lastly its a return to us at Whilton for Olli Wheddon who has been busy racing Sodi World Champs, University karting championships and so many other bits and pieces i have literally given up trying to keep up. It goes without saying if these 3 stay together all year that they will be in the top 10 overall this year.
So there we have it, 7 teams all targetting at least a top 10 finish. We cant all get in there given the quality of the opposition so my personal hope is come the final table we have for the first time put at least 2 teams into the top 10 for the first time ever and one of them is 6th or higher. Can we do it? We shall see....