After clinching another Top 5 finish – the fifth in five races – young 14-year-old Jimmy Hélias from Normandy is now installed in the no. 1 spot in the International Karting Ranking in the top-tier OK category! This official classification of international kart drivers was introduced this year by the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile), the body that governs the whole motorsport pyramid from the base up to Formula 1. It operates in a similar fashion to the ATP and WTA rankings in tennis. It is yet another honour for Jimmy who, don’t forget, is part of the rookies who made their debut in OK last November!
From now on, the FIA will publish its rankings every Monday after taking into account the results of the weekend and the application of a scale depending on the relative importance of the different events. At the wheel of his Tony Kart/Vortex run by the Swedish team, Ward Racing, Jimmy is reaping the rewards of consistently fighting at the front in OK, the category that is the technical and sporting summit in the FIA Karting hierarchy. His position in the no. 1 spot rewards both his speed and consistency as he has finished between fifth and second place since the start of the season.
At Sarno, the French driver set the tenth-fastest time before leaving his mark on the three qualifying heats. First of all, he ran into a minor braking problem which led to him going straight on resulting in a 13th-place finish, which he followed up with fifth and a victory! He also set the fastest lap in two of the heats which speaks volumes about the out-and-out speed he was capable of extracting from his kart. Cumulating the results of his three heats plus his fourth place in the pre-final meant that he started the final in ninth place. His race was a mixture of attack and intelligence and he scored yet another big result with fifth place overall.
The opening races of the season traditionally take place in Italy where nearly all the factories producing karting equipment, chassis and engines, are based. Now it’s time for Jimmy to set off for Spain where two races are taking place with a two-week gap between them: The Champions of the Future Euro Series at Valencia in two days and then the first round of the FIA European Karting Championship between 24 - 26 March. Jimmy is ready to proudly hold high the French colours in the top-tier level of karting!