KARTING: Ben Slater

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At an endurance meeting at Wheels International, Birmingham Ben Slater was selected from 79 students to represent Coventry University in the British Universities karting championship [BUKC].

With the A team already selected from the 20011 championship only 4 places were up for grabs in a BUKC test day at Whilton Mill. Ben was among the 12 drivers selected for the test With 38 University teams and 152 drivers he posted the second quickest time of the day just 2 tenths shy of team mate Miles Murphy [TKM British championship S 1 and TKM festival winner and TALKO works driver] and secured a place in a very strong B team which also included TKM 4 stroke TALKO works driver and former British champion Will Thomas

With the team selected both the A and B Teams travelled to Warden Law near Sunderland for the BUKC Northern Qualifier. At this event 36 Teams battled out for the --places in the 9 round championship which starts with Rounds 1 and 2 next year in February at Teeside Aerodrome, Newcastle and finishes in April at Buckmore Park with rounds in between at Whilton Mill, Llandow ,South Wales and Clay pigeon in Dorset

The qualifier consisted of a an endurance race and sprint races with the combined aggregate results determining the finishing order with Coventry A finishing 3rd and the B team 4th In the sprint race Ben put in the second quickest time

The first round of the Coventry University karting championship was held in very cold and damp conditions at Whilton Mill Ben posted the 3rd fastest lap in practice and in his two heats finished 1st and 2nd and was runner up to A team captain Ashley Yorke in the final

Ben’s club championship season almost ended with a huge accident in the October meeting when he was the innocent party in a very stupid and reckless overtaking move by a competitor whilst running 5th place in his 3rd heat. Both drivers were unhurt but bens kart was badly damaged. In the true spirit of club racing his competitors lent him crucial parts to get the kart back on the grid for the final. Having missed the November meeting the kart was completely rebuilt for the final club round of the year In December. In practice Ben was only 3 tenths of club championship contenders Ben Palmer and Andrew winter both from London and on race day finished the season in a comfortably 14th position from a full grid of 32 competitors having started in 20th position. In heat 1 Ben started on p25 and finished 18th but in heat 2 starting from P3 Ben was caught up in mayhem into the first corner pushing him back to 25th but recovered to finish 18th

Ben has a very busy 2012 with his motorsport engineering studies, racing for his university in the BUKC championship, Coventry University karting championship, working for KART TEK and the possibility of working as a team member with a Formula BARC Renault UK Team. Ben will also next season compete in the club championship at Little Rissington and selected rounds at Kimbolton, Glan Y Gors in North Wales and stand alone national events

Ben’s diary with a detailed review of the season and plans for next season campaign will shortly be available on the web