Race ace claims fifth podium

Jack Barlow on track at Rowrah. Picture courtesy Chris Walker/Kartpix
Jack Barlow on track at Rowrah. Picture courtesy Chris Walker/Kartpix

Jack Barlow claimed his fifth podium of the year with a fine performance in the latest round of the elite Super One KF2 Championship.

The 17-year-old from Pett finished second in the first points-scoring final at Rowrah in Cumbria and clawed his way up to fourth in the main final after recovering from a spin.

Barlow was lying third in the championship standings at the start of the weekend and was fourth fastest in timed qualifying having used full wet tyres on a drying track.

Undeterred and demonstrating the grit and ability that has marked him as one of the UK’s most outstanding talents, Barlow won the first of the two heats by more than a second-and-a-half.

Barlow, who won the Super One Junior Rotax title in brilliant style last year, was third in the following race, earning him P2 on the starting grid for Sunday’s first points-scoring final.

Although he led at the start, Barlow was hit from behind as he braked for the second hairpin, pushing him wide. But the offending driver was given a one-place penalty, boosting Barlow to second after the chequered flag.

In the main final, Barlow was pushed down a place in the surge to the fast, but tight, first right-hander almost immediately after the start. Reigning champion Mark Litchfield created an instant breakaway.

Barlow was trying hard to stay in touch with fellow championship protagonist Ben Barnicoat, but carried too much speed into the second hairpin and locked the front brakes. The kart got away from him and he spun.

This dropped the would-be Formula One star down the order, prompting an exciting recovery drive. Barlow clawed his way back into fourth spot and was catching Alex Hamilton in third, but simply ran out of time to launch a move.

Barlow said: “I’m still in touch with the championship lead with four finals to go. That represents a total of 200 points that are up for grabs and I’m just 20 off the top of the table. I’m the underdog now, which means the pressure is off, but it doesn’t mean that all bets are too.”