In the Karting European Championship, no girl had won a race in over eight years. Beitske Visser, 15, achieved this exceptional result in France, in Varennes sur Allier, on the fastest circuit of the season. With an amazing talent that just keeps growing, the Dutch girl also made a leap in the general standings by finishing fourth, on her first participation in the European KZ2 Championship.
Beitske had been looking forward to this victory in KZ2. She had been close to it for some weeks and she never spared her efforts to reach her goal. And the result finally came on the Varennes circuit, where speed exceeds 150 km/h, with an average of over 100 km/h, 3 cm from the ground! You need to have guts, know how to brake late, choose the right strategy and remain focussed for almost 20 minutes to win there. Beitske is also very good in timed qualifying, when no mistakes are allowed and you have to warm up tyres well. She proved her skills by reaching the pole position at the beginning of the weekend. During the four qualifying heats, she repeated her excellent performances by winning twice, with one best lap time in race.
"I felt very confident about the first of the two decisive races", Beitske pointed out. "In Varennes, it is difficult to get out of the pack because drafting allows one driver to stay behind you, though at a slightly lower speed. But despite all that, I though I could leave them behind". Her gut feeling proved right. She took the lead on the fourth of the 17 race laps and kept a very high pace to avoid the attack of one of her pursuers. A great job!
In her head, Beitske knew that nothing could stop her and in Race 2 she made the start with the same determination to win. But this time, bad luck struck. "Race 2 started a bit like the first and I felt very well at the wheel of my Intrepid-TM. I made the best start. A driver quickly overtook me, but I managed to pass him back immediately. Then, a driver passed me in a less correct manner and I lost a few places. But when I was about to regain ground, I was violently pushed from behind and sent against another kart, then I went into a tailspin. It is really disappointing, because drivers know that cameras film this kind of manoeuvres. By acting like that, he could only receive a penalty and that's exactly what happened to him. Meanwhile, I missed a great opportunity to win again, knowing that with a second victory I could be European vice champion. A pity, because together with the Intrepid team and Tec'Sav, we had done a great job".
Second in the WSK Euro Series and now fourth in the European Championship, Beitske has definitely made a name for herself in international karting in just a few months. The many congratulations, applauses and tokens of affection she received during the podium ceremony, when she occupied triumphantly the highest step while the Dutch anthem played, are ample proof of that.