Motorsport News - Karting
Under the Sun of Braga, Sodi Dominates U18 World Championship with Easthope
13th July 2012
In total harmony with the U18 World Championship spirit, Sodi reaped the benefits of its involvement in this discipline at the first round of the 2012 edition. Thanks to the talent of a young British driver, Henry Easthope, who trained at the Rotax school, the French brand witnessed the success
of its Celesta despite a group of top level competitors. At Braga, Easthope asserted his dominance throughout the weekend, marked by increasingly hot weather.
Described as invincible, unbeatable or the master of the category by his rivals, Henry Easthope was the U18 hero, thanks to his stunning performances from the beginning to the end of the Portuguese meeting. By winning almost everything possible during this World Championship, Easthope and his Sodi were in the lead in as many as 80 laps out of the 96 completed by drivers, including pre-final 2 with a reversed starting grid. Without it, he would have reached an incredible score of 80 out of 84! Thanks to all his fastest laps in the race, he also set the absolute record of the meeting.
For Sodi, it is a victory on many levels. A victory for a Sodi driver loyal to the brand, who competed in Rotax races, which have also been widely supported for many years by the French brand. A victory for a Sodi chassis in a merciless framework of comparison, given that all U18 entrants used the same type of engine distributed by drawing lots. A victory for Sodis philosophy of a karting discipline accessible to anybody, without distinction, regardless of financial resources, where talent has priority over all other considerations thanks to top quality chassis.
Great performances by Jules Gounon at world level confirmed this universal vision of sport. Thanks to his experience in the French promotion series, Jules was able to compete on the same footing as the elite of international drivers: 9th in timed qualifying, in the top 3 in two heats, 5th in pre-final 1 and 13th in the general classification: the results speak for themselves.
Hubert Petits performance was equally impressive, with a steady progression that took him to 13th in the final race. The choice of a Sodi chassis was, perhaps, not irrelevant as far as these results are concerned...
Getting back to the grand winner of the day, Henry Easthope, it should be mentioned that the Briton took pole position and then won 3 of his 4 qualifying heats. Leader in this phase, while the weather was growing hotter and hotter, he won again in pre-final 1 and then staged a 19-place recovery drive in pre-final 2, where he started last on the reversed grid. Easthope gained leadership at the end of this hard battle and also won the final, without ever being seriously concerned by his rivals, though they are among the best world drivers in KF1/KF2!...
Sodi congratulated Henry, thanked all the brand drivers and gave them an appointment at the end of August at Angerville, for the second episode of the U18 saga.
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