In Germany, Beitske Visser faced one of her toughest challenges in 2011 karting season: the European KZ1 Championship, where the level was very high given the presence of all the best drivers in the world. Despite a disastrous meeting start, when she was run into and fell down the order, the Dutch girl staged a superb recovery, which she concluded with an encouraging final 10th place, showing a competitiveness that had nothing to envy to the best drivers.
With her sixth best time in timed qualifying out of 41 drivers overall, the only female driver racing in the European KZ1 Championship came in just 0.1 seconds short of the pole position, in the group of the favourites to the title. She made an excellent start on the first heat. She was second on the first curve, but she was run into from the back while coming out of the second curve. She started from the last position and had to content herself with the 21st place. Again, there were several bumps in the pack in the second heat. She concluded with a 12th place and had to be satisfied with a 23rd place on the pre-final start grid.
"The Wackersdorf circuit is not particularly suitable for our 125cc gearbox karts and overtaking is very difficult", Beitske commented. "This is exactly what happened in the pre-final, where I finished 18th after losing a lot of time behind some drivers. For the final, the team made a few changes that proved to be effective. I had already moved up to 11th at one third of the race, but again I was bumped into and I lost several places. And what is more, I realised that my chassis was damaged and it was not as effective as before!"
In these conditions, her recovery to 10th was almost unhoped for, but it showed again the fighter's attitude of Beitske, who also concluded with the best place among the Dutch drivers despite her young age. "I have always done my best during the weekend. A 10th place remains an excellent result for my first European KZ1 Championship".
At Full Throttle!
As sometimes happens in karting, a merciless discipline that forges the character of a driver, the final result does not always mirror one's competitiveness. "I am not ashamed of the times I set vis-à-vis the drivers who fought for the title", the talented 16-year old Dutch girl commented. "Without the bump I suffered in one of the heats and the push in the final race, I know I could have finished in the top five. I am looking forward to a new opportunity to prove it. Keeping a positive attitude is essential..."
An Unexpected, Unfortunate Incident
It was with some surprise that drivers learned that the tyre manufacturer chosen for this meeting had decided to change the tyre type to be used in Germany at the last minute. "Our team had carried out some tests with soft tyres before the race to chose the type of chassis they were going to give us for Wackersdorf. In the end we used "medium" tyres, which have a lower grip. This is one of the reasons why the performance of my Intrepid chassis with Praga colours was not as good as I expected. The whole team regretted it".