Myers claims first Senior Max win – and title
Oliver Myers continued to capitalise on the opportunity of late-season outings with Aim Motorsport by claiming both his first win in the Senior Max class and the Continental Cup title at PF International.
As had been the case two weeks previously, when he received a last-minute call up to the Aim line-up for the RGMMC International Open in Spain, the opportunity left Myers with little time to think about his preparation, but he again made the most of the chance to run with Steve Lake’s squad.
The 16-year old’s kart had not even been back to the Aim workshops between events, having needed to cadge a lift in another team’s truck to get back from Zuera, but, after a lengthy rebuild and spruce up, it was as if machine and driver had never been apart, as Myers again emerged towards the head of the times in practice.
Saturday provided an early opportunity to get a grip on the kart’s handling in wet conditions, and Myers again impressed by matching his highly-rated team-mate in the tricky conditions. However, despite confidence that he could be a threat whatever the weather, the Leeds-based driver was disappointed to learn that he would be starting mid-grid for the event’s two heats.
Without the benefit of the qualifying session that he had been used to in his national and international competitions this season, the 16-year old knew that he would have to work his way through the field if he was to secure a decent slot for the Final, but started as he meant to go on by making up eight places in as many laps to cross the line seventh overall, having posted a fastest lap half a second quicker than anyone else.
Heat two was even better, despite the race have started in confusing fashion when red flags appeared at a couple of marshal posts. After a great getaway, Myers was in the leading group which slowed when the warnings appeared, only to lose ground to the chasing pack as they did so. Just six minutes remained when the action resumed, but the RDF Building Services Ltd / Turner Butler-sponsored driver was soon on the move, this time climbing into second spot by the time the chequered flag fell.
“Once again, I just seemed to click with the kart,” Myers confirmed, “It was my first UK meeting in Senior Max and I’m still getting used to the differences between the Junior and Senior kart, but the Aim team came up with a good set-up that we hardly had to change. After Zuera, it was great to hit the ground running, and my confidence just grew with every session.”
Myers’ heat results were good enough to earn him the inside of row two for the Final but, after a typically chaotic start which saw contact throughout the field, he emerged at the head of the field by turn three and soon built an advantage of around four seconds following further incidents in his wake.
Once ahead, the #23 machine’s pace was good enough to rank amongst the best, but not necessarily to keep faster runners at arm’s length. However, although the gap to his nearest pursuer came down as the laps ticked by, the would-be challenger then out-braked himself while trying to pass at the start of the final lap. Despite almost being collected in the incident, Myers was able to retain his lead and the resulting 1.6secs gap proved enough to carry him to his second title of the season, following on from the successful weekend at Rowrah which netted the Junior Rotax ‘O’ Plate in June.
“This is a special win,” Myers admitted, “I didn’t even realise it was the Continental Cup until the drivers’ briefing, but to come home at the head of the field in front of a full grandstand and pick up another title is great. It’s also an honour to be at the head of the first Kosmic 1-2-3, and the first 1-2 for Aim, and I hope it goes some way to repaying Steve Lake, firstly for giving me the opportunity to shoot for a Rotax World Finals place in Zuera, and then for asking me back this weekend.”
Myers could return to the Aim awning for some further UK outings before the end of the year, but remains open to options in both karting and car racing for 2013.