The Kart Grand Prix of France, organised from 2nd to 5th August at Aunay les Bois / Essay will award the titles of FIA Karting European Champion – OK and FIA Karting European Champion – Junior after the four Competitions of the 2018 season. Hannes Janker (DEU) appears as the favourite in the OK category, while Paul Aron (EST) is in a strong position in OK-Junior. However, several Drivers are still able to challenge for the two Championships where the verdict will only be known after the finish line of the Finals.
It is therefore in France, and more precisely in Normandy, that the European battle will end in OK and OK-Junior. Known for its technical difficulty, the international circuit of Aunay les Bois / Essay has already hosted several high level Competitions including the 2014 CIK-FIA World Championship. The track has been recently covered with new, particularly smooth tarmac bringing both a gain in performance and less tyre wear. The experience and motivation of the organising club K61 will be invaluable to ensure the smooth running of the Competition in a heated atmosphere. The weather could also play a role in the results of this long-awaited event.
The previous Competition, run in Germany at the Ampfing circuit, clarified the situation in both categories. Two leaders have emerged in the provisional standings, Hannes Janker (DEU) in OK and Paul Aron (EST) in OK-Junior, enjoying a significant advantage when starting the final stretch. But the outcome of the two Championships is not yet decided. It should not be forgotten that the allocation of the titles will take place after the the two worst results (Qualifying Heats and Final) are eliminated. Under these conditions, seven drivers can theoretically be crowned in OK and five in OK-Junior. The suspense is set to last until the chequered flag, to the delight of the fans.
Advantage Janker in OK
The holder of two victories, Hannes Janker (DEU) has been at top speed in the last two Competitions of the FIA Karting European Championship – OK, while taking advantage of favourable situations. With a 19-point lead, he is not immune to a boost from Pedro Hiltbrand (ESP), the World and European Champion of 2016, capable of major achievements. The fight for 3rd place in the rankings concerns three Drivers who are very close in terms of points: Juho Valtanen (FIN), David Vidales Ajenjo (ESP) and Roman Stanek (CZE). Currently at the edge of the top five, Zane Maloney (BRB) and Harry Thompson (GBR) will probably have a say in the final result, as will Lorenzo Travisanutto (ITA) and Mattia Michelotto (ITA).
Provisional classification of the FIA Karting European Championship – OK before Essay:
1- Hannes Janker (DEU) – 77 points
2- Pedro Hiltbrand (ESP) – 58 points
3- Juho Valtanen (FIN) – 46 points
4- David Vidales Ajenjo (ESP) – 45 points
5- Roman Stanek (CZE) – 44 points
OK-Junior: Aron well positioned
Finding his way to victory at Ampfing after a slump at PFI, Paul Aron (EST) has taken the lead over his main rivals in the FIA Karting European Championship – Junior. In addition to his speed, the double winner also has an advantage on dropped scores. His direct pursuer, Gabriele Mini’ (ITA), is affected by the disappointment of an unfortunate technical setback at the end of the last Competition and is preparing to throw all his energy into the final clash. He is, however, tied with formidable opponent Gabriel Bortoleto (BRA), who is a potential Champion along with Kai Askey (GBR) and Dilano Van T’Hoff (NLD). The title race could be influenced by other Drivers able to win in Normandy: Kirill Smal (RUS), Luca Griggs (GBR), Victor Bernier (FRA), Dino Beganovic (SWE) and Hadrien David (FRA) are in search of a leading performance to close the season.
Provisional classification of the FIA Karting European Championship – Junior before Essay:
1- Paul Aron (EST) – 69 points
2- Gabriele Mini ‘(ITA) – 52 points
3- Gabriel Bortoleto (BRA) – 52 points
4- Kai Askey (GBR) – 47 points
5- Dilano Van T’Hoff (NLD) – 43 points