Kiern Jewiss confident for the future despite challenging end to European Championship hopes
MB Partners karting prodigy and Rotax Max Euro Challenge contender Kiern Jewiss suffered a disappointing weekend at the championship’s final round in Genk, Belgium on Sunday, when he was excluded from Final One and therefore the possibility of scoring any points. Despite originally being in a strong position to take the crown, the young star remained in the championship top ten, finishing in ninth.
Kiern’s talent shone through when he won Heat One starting from P3. Unfortunately in Heat Two, contact at the start pushed Kiern into last place, leaving him the remaining seven laps to dominantly overtake from 25th, finishing in 14th position. Heat Three proved difficult from the offset, with difficult weather conditions and a lot of on-track contact, but Kiern put up a fight for his rivals and finished 2nd.
Based on Kiern’s performance in the heats, he started in P7 in Final One. The 26-car grid made for exciting on-track battles all weekend, unfortunately culminating in a racing incident involving almost half of the grid in Final One. Along with thirteen other drivers, Kiern was forced off the track at the first corner. Seven of those drivers, including Kiern, were hit with such force; they left the track and did not regain control until the exit of turn five.
Along with six other drivers, Kiern re-joined the race at turn five after the racers who remained on track had passed, the safest way of doing so. The 13 year old then once again showed his raw racing talent and determination by carving through the traffic and difficult corners in style, making his way back up to ninth.
Unfortunately for Kiern and the six drivers involved, despite re-joining the race at turn five which was the safest course of action, this broke a racing rule by cutting the circuit, despite not gaining any racing advantage. The racing clerks penalised all seven drivers, five of whom were title contenders, excluding them from Final One. This meant they could not qualify and race in Final Two or score any points all weekend.
Despite the weekend not resulting in Kiern’s favour, the young driver showed maturity and professionalism beyond his years, commenting on the weekend: “It’s disappointing, but I’m confident under different circumstances I would have finished in the top three of the championship and fought for the win. There’s not a lot more I can say about the situation to be honest. I would like to thank my team Strawberry Racing and Cream Engines for their continued effort and support, and offer a big congratulations to my teammate Jack McCarthy for winning the European Championship.”
Head of the MB Partners Young Driver Academy, Kieren Clark added: “Kiern did the right thing this weekend by not driving the wrong way around the circuit to re-join where he left, along with re-joining the race at the back not to gain advantage, showing he has understanding of why the rule is in place. It was a mature decision, which should have been taken into account when the clerks decided their penalties. For example, a time penalty for the 7 drivers would have allowed them all to race in the finale and set up a fantastic main final. I feel for Kiern, because he’s a fantastic racer that’s all he wants to do, but his attitude and strength this weekend was very impressive and we are more hopeful for the future than ever.”
Kiern will next compete in the 9th and final round of the 2015 Mini Max Championship, held at the PF International Kart Circuit, Grantham, from 25-27 September.