Facing a new circuit in a major international competition is always a dreaded moment for factories, teams, and drivers. From 3rd to 6th May, the KR brand set out to discover the Steel Ring circuit in Třinec, located in the Czech Republic, to participate in the second round of the Champions of the Future Euro Series. In the dry during the Timed Practice and in the heats, and then in the rain during the Final, the high level of performance on this difficult circuit confirmed the efficiency of the Italian chassis, which won both categories and also achieved two other podiums. Ukrainian Oleksandr Bondarev triumphed in OK-Junior, while Italian Iacopo Martinese took 3rd place. In OK, Britain's Joe Turney made an incredible comeback to win and Kean Nakamura Berta completed the top three!
The deadline for the FIA European Karting Championship event in Třinec is fast approaching (19th-21st May) and this event organised by RGMCC was anticipated in many ways. Not exactly easy to get to grips with, especially for the younger and less experienced drivers, the 1223 metre track proved interesting. Despite some concerns, there was no shortage of overtaking opportunities on this track and some of the drivers clearly demonstrated this by making some great recoveries. The tarmac was not too aggressive with the tyres, which held up well throughout the races. KR Global Motorsport Company salutes the efforts made by the Czech circuit management to organise this event in the best possible conditions, which contributed to the appeal of the meeting.
OK-Junior: Bondarev hits the target with his KR-IAME
Oleksandr Bondarev has been waiting for a podium finish in a major OK-Junior event for some time. After his two podiums in 2023 in FIA Karting and WSK, the Ukrainian achieved his goal with the KR Motorsport team. Consistent in the heats, he won his Super Heat before making the difference in the Final, winning the fastest lap in the race. The Italian Iacopo Martinese, who is now wearing the Cetilar Racing colours, accompanied him on the third step of the podium after an eight-place improvement.
The KR chassis allowed other young drivers to confirm their potential and to showcase their skills, such as Taym Saleh (Sauber Academy, P11), David Cosma Cristofor (P16) and Luna Fluxa Cross (Prema Racing, P20 after a 16-place improvement). Thibaut Ramaekers (VDK Racing) was 4th after the Qualifying Heats and was unlucky on Sunday, as were Arjen Kraling, Niklas Schaufler (DPK Racing), Matt Corbi (VDK Racing) and Augustus Toniolo.
OK: Joe Turney has a string of successes
Already a winner in Valencia in the Champions of the Future Euro Series in March, and also in the FIA Karting European Championship in Spain, Joe Turney has won a second consecutive victory in the RGMMC series. It's not often that a driver manages to win after setting the 51st time in the Timed Qualifying session! The Briton missed out on the Qualifying session completely but then proved that he had the speed to move up to 1st position. His KR-IAME was unbeatable in Třinec!
The KR chassis was the best represented in the OK Final. For Prema Racing, Kean Nakamura-Berta had a brilliant performance: P2 in Timed Qualifying, P2 after the heats, P1 in the Super Heat, and P3 in the Final! Alex Powell, who set the fastest lap, also had a place on the podium, but he crashed at the back of the pack just after the start before coming back in 8th place! Yuanpu Cui and Enzo Tarnvanichkul had to retire in the Final. Too bad for Enzo who had shown his progress in the heats. Fionn MacLaughlin (VDK Racing) was unlucky in the Final, but he was always in the top 10. Congratulations also to the DPK Racing trio in the Final (Aleksander Bogunovic, Nacho Tunon, and Kiano Blum). Lenn Nijs, Thomas Strauven, and Kiano Blum were also among the protagonists of the meeting.
Dino Chiesa, Head of KR Global Motorsport Company, commented:
"We will have good memories of this first trip to Třinec. It's always good to see our young drivers on the podium like Oleksandr Bondarev and Iaccopo Martinese in OK-Junior. In OK, Joe Turney showed again that he is a great champion, but he must continue to be wary of the rising stars that are Kean Nakamura-Berta and Alex Powell. However, we must be careful. We have won both categories this time, but this should not be taken as a promise of victory for the next FIA Karting event. Our competitors will undoubtedly work even harder to beat us on 21st May. It's up to us to stay competitive and to evolve further to reach the highest possible level of performance."
"Finally, I would like to thank RGMMC for having made the choice to schedule the Finals on Saturday. Many of our technicians and mechanics were able to fly back on Saturday evening to be with their families on Sunday. This gave them a welcome rest before tackling work again at the beginning of the week!"