The first appointment of the season was the 555 laps at Kart Centre Roosendaal on Saturday, January 13th.
I formed a Traxxis team together with Peter Neefs, Detlef Pahl and Nico van Ostade. I saw this race as a good opportunity to gain some more race rhythm after a long winter and a few months of inactivity.
Before the race we drove one heat as a preparation where I felt comfortable quite fast. I must admit I had a good kart but even then, my lap times were good.
The qualifying consisted of two hot laps. One at 80kg and one at 95kg. I drove the one at 80kg and Detlef did the one at 95kg.
My hot lap was with quite a margin the worst part (luckily) of the whole evening. It became immediately clear why I wanted to do that training heat. The sharpness to put down a fast lap right away was missing which resulted in a horrible seventh place (11 teams participating). Rarely had I been so dissatisfied about my hot lap. Detlef managed to do quite a lot better than me with a P5 in his hot lap. That performance confirmed my suspicion that our qualifying kart wasn’t the best there was.
We decided that I would take the start. Having started from P6 I managed to climb my way up to P5 and a bit later to P4. Later, I felt that I had lost a little too much in the opening stages of the race, the lack of race rhythm surely had its role in that.
Detlef, Nick and Peter all drove quite solid stints and we could find ourselves at P3-4 during those stints.
In my second stint we all expected a slower kart which turned out to be a lot quicker. After two laps I was fastest on track and during the rest of that stint I remained quickest together with Danny (who went on to win the race with Rico).
After my second stint my teammates put in some good stints what gave us the confidence to fully go for P3. Three stints from the end it became exciting when our nearest competitors started closing in quite quickly. Shortly after that stint their comeback ended.
I got to drive the last stint of the race. With a good kart I was second fastest on track being only 0,05-0,1s/lap slower than Danny. We eventually took the chequered flag in P3 with a bonus of about 30s on P4.