Winter Cup provides difficult test for Jewiss
Kiern Jewiss travelled to South Garda, Italy, for the 22nd annual Winter Cup this weekend where he battled admirally to come away with a handful of top-10 results.
The week started brightly for the 14-year-old as he delivered a number of excellent performances in the Thursday practice sessions despite the weekend being only his second appearance in the OK class since the step up from the OK-Junior class. Kiern ended the first day of driving with four top-10 finishes, including two 4th placed positions.
Jewiss continued his strong showing through to the Friday where the first session of the day saw Kiern finish third in the warm up prior to the day’s first Qualifying Heats. Qualifying Practice saw uncharacteristic pace from the Kent based driver and the team. His time of 47.782 meant he would start the first Qualifying Heat of the weekend down in 13th place, already on the back foot. After making changes to the kart, Kiern bounced back from his disappointing qualifying result and overtook several drivers on his way to crossing the line in 6th place!
On Saturday, Kiern again started down in 13th for the remaining two Qualifying Heats and would need his overtaking qualities more than ever if he was to secure a place in the Super Heat. In the day’s first heat, Kiern battled past six drivers and displayed his natural overtaking ability to cross the line in 7th place. The day’s last Qualifying Heat saw Kiern make a great start and hold on to finish the race in 9th place and secure a fifth row start in Sunday’s Super Heat.
Battling against the world’s best drivers, Kiern knew he would have a difficult task on his hands when he lined up 6th for his Super Heat. A tough race saw lots of on-track battles and although the pace wasn’t great for Kiern, he still fought hard to come home with a 7th place finish and secure his spot in the final.
After losing 23 drivers throughout the weekend, the top-34 drivers lined up on the grid for the Sunday’s final. Starting in 10th place, Kiern made a good start and found himself up in 9th position and in a close race with four other drivers. The group of drivers traded positions and when the chequered flag dropped, Kiern crossed the line in 9th place. However, upon scrutineering, it was found that Kiern’s bumper had dropped and therefore the officials handed him a 10-second time penalty – which ultimately demoted him down to 17th place.
Kiern remained positive despite an unfortunate ending to his weekend in Italy.
“It was a positive weekend from a personal perspective. I’m happy with my performance on the track but ultimately we didn’t have the pace to compete with the leaders. In testing we were fast and things were shaping up for a good weekend but unfortunately we didn’t have the pace in the races and we need to understand why.”
Kieren Clark, Head of MB Partners’ Young Driver Academy, saw the potential in Kiern’s performance and knows it won’t be long until Kiern and Forza get things right.
“Kiern did really well this weekend – it was a massive improvement. He showed throughout the weekend that when he has the right tools, he can get the job done. This weekend, the pace just wasn’t there to be challenging for the win but Kiern will keep working hard and I’m positive he’ll soon be fighting for race wins.”
Kiern is back in the kart on the 2nd of March for the second round of the WSK Super Master Series in Castelletto di Branduzzo, Italy.
Forza Racing #214 – Kiern Jewiss
Free Practice 1: 4th (48.360, +0.202)
Free Practice 2: 4th (47.656, +0.214)
Free Practice 3: 8th (47.521, +0.167)
Free Practice 4: 7th (47.551, +0.194)
Warm Up: 3rd (48.822, +0.110)
Qualifying Practice: 13th (47.782, +0.439)
Qualifying Heat A-B: 6th
Warm Up: 9th (48.077, +0.309)
Qualifying Heat A-C: 7th
Qualifying Heat A-D: 9th
Warm Up: 7th (47.952, +0.227)
Super Heat: 7th