Students competing in 2017 British Universities Karting Championship qualifiers   Photo by Stu Stretton/BUKC
Students competing in 2017 British Universities Karting Championship qualifiers Photo by Stu Stretton/BUKC

KU Karting Society qualifies for British Universities Karting Championship

KU’s Karting Society (KOKS) sprinted their way into the British Universities Karting Championship (BUKC) after competing in a ten race qualifying round.

Despite wet conditions on the Whilton Mill track in Northampton, KOKS Racing drivers achieved strong qualifying results among 45 teams competing on the day, with team A finishing 14th and team B 21st.

Both teams qualified for the main championship Intermediates class, with team B also getting into the premier class, however, team A missed out on qualifying into the Premier class by three points.

“We saw a notable performance from Liam O’Flynn who qualified fifth in race one, and we are overall happy with the results,” said the society’s social officer, Sam Righton, who came 16th in race 10.

“The atmosphere was amazing as the circuit hosted 180 students. Personally, I was disappointed in my performance as I felt it cost the A team a spot in the premier class.”

Team A was represented by Liam O’Flynn, Sam Righton, Andrew Hunt and Max Dawson, while Adrian Jarych, George Forakis, Alex Dowling and Mike Nutley raced in team B.

Drivers speeding on the Whilton Mill track Photo by Stu Stretton/ BUKC

Drivers speeding on the Whilton Mill track     Photo by Stu Stretton/BUKC

KOKS Racing is one of the longest running student societies at Kingston University, dating back to the early 2000s. They were awarded Sports Club of the Year 2010-11, as well as Recreational Club of the year 2011-12.

Currently, there are 22 registered members of the society with eight primary drivers who represent the club in the qualifications and the main championship.

“The numbers are a bit down, we are trying to reach out to more students,” said Righton. “People are always very interested in the society itself, but they get put off by the price, it’s quite an expensive hobby. It’s £50 for a sports card and membership just to start with.

“We’re very lucky because we’re the second most funded activity at uni and we’ve always been very thankful to the Student Union for all the funding we get, however, we would love to see more students with driving experience.”

The society organises practice races where all society members are welcome to join. They prefer to hire tracks in South East England’s locations with the aim to get people used to different tracks and adapt to different conditions.

“Usually if you’re quick in wet conditions, you’re a good driver,” explained Righton. “And that’s also how we choose the drivers for the races. The BUKC takes place in February so you need someone in your team who is good in the wet.”

KOKS Racing Promotional Trailer, 2016

The British Universities Karting Championship, which was founded by Imperial College London students in 2001, is a motor racing championship for students currently enrolled at universities in the UK.

Teams of four from all over the UK that compete in the BUKC have to get through one of two qualifiers to then qualify for the main National Championship which start in early February.

Only the top 27 teams from each of the qualifiers will then take part in the main event, however, any teams that don’t manage to qualify for the National Championship will be invited back to compete in the Rookie Championship, which creates an opportunity for less experienced drivers to get more practice.

About Bibiana Baluk

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