Paul Carr Racing’s Matthew Parry continues to lead the Super 1 Junior Rotax category after three of the season’s six rounds, despite a frustrating weekend at Buckmore Park in Kent.

After a late start to the weekend courtesy of a pre-GCSE exam, Parry – and a few others – had only limited testing time on the Friday preceding the meeting, but that – and the fact that he missed the pre-event test due to clashing Formula Kart Stars commitments - did not prevent the Bury St Edmunds youngster from underlining his potential by immediately posting times close to the ultimate pace.

With the first outing of the new-for-2009 cylinders in the Rotax classes expected to bring the field closer together, an already interesting round was given added spice, and qualifying did little to quell the anticipation as the top 13 drivers qualified within three-tenths of each other, with third through ninth split by just 0.07secs.

Parry, in eighth, was naturally disappointed not to have been higher up the order, especially as a matter of hundredths could have put him third fastest, but his pace was evident in the heats, both of which took place the same day. Race one saw the 15-year old chase Andy King to the chequered flag, having risen through the field, before finishing just over a second adrift after 17 laps, but the second outing proved to be the undoing of Parry’s weekend.

An early off, courtesy of a hefty whack up the back that sent him into the tyre wall, left the PCR driver at the back of the field but, more importantly, damaged the mounting of his rear bumper. Although Parry subsequently produced the sort of fighting display that has become his trademark in rising to 15th – with the top ten a near certainty – race officials decided that the kart was too badly damaged to continue and called him to pit, leaving him 23rd in the final classification.

That result had a knock-on effect for Parry’s grid position in the Pre-Final, with the PCR kart lining up a lowly 17th, but the championship leader was not deterred. Far from struggling in the midfield, he picked off most of those ahead of him, before an over-ambitious move dropped him back to tenth. Still not done, however, Parry continued to battle, eventually claiming fifth at the flag, and setting himself up for a shot at the podium in the main event.

“I was getting a little bit frustrated,” he admitted later, “If I had thought it through a little more, I would probably have finished a little higher up, but at least I was able to recover.”

Starting from fifth in the final race of the weekend, Parry immediately gained one position, but then tangled with Billy Albone and found himself facing the tyres for the second time.

Relegated to 13th, he struggled to make headway against the class elite in a long, hot 24-lap encounter, eventually gaining two spots to cross the line in eleventh position.

“This was something of a learning weekend for me,” Parry admitted, “In particular, I learned that, even when a move appears to be on, sometimes discretion needs to be the better part of valour and that, in these long races, there is usually plenty of time to get the move done.”

Although dropping his two scores from Buckmore drops him into a tie for second overall in the Super 1 Junior Rotax standings, Parry still has more points than anyone when all three rounds are taken into account, effectively topping the table by two over Ed Brand, who claimed a maximum in Kent.

“We were almost expecting Buckmore Park to feature among our dropped scores,” Parry commented, “so I’m glad to be within touching distance of Ed, and still ahead on title points. I know that, without my mistakes, I could have been right up there with Ed, as we were on a similar pace all weekend.”


Article created by Craig Llewellyn.