With the leading quartet well in place and hungry outsiders not far behind, the KZ Final of this first round of the European Championship in Genk had all the ingredients for a great race. Emilien Denner (Sodi/TM) was the favourite after dominating until then. He shared the front row of the grid with Paolo Ippolito (KR/Iame) ahead of Matteo Vigano (Birel ART/TM) and Jorrit Pex (KR/TM). Francesco Celenta (Parolin/TM) and Pedro Hiltbrand (Birel ART/TM) were in ambush just behind, followed by Lorenzo Travisanutto (Parolin/TM) and Adrien Renaudin (Tony Kart/Vortex). The sky was clear, the temperature was 26° and the race was on for 23 laps.
Denner got off to a perfect start and the battle was going on with Ippolito 2nd, Hiltbrand 3rd, Vigano 4th and Pex 5th. Simo Puhakka (Tony Kart/Vortex) had already retired. The leading quartet had distanced themselves. Senna van Walstijn (Sodi/TM) was in 7th position between the two Parolins. In 14th position, Jérémy Iglesias (CRG/TM) set a fastest lap on the fourth lap, but Denner was faster on the following lap. He confirmed his speed on lap 6, while Vigano came back to 3rd ahead of Hiltbrand. On lap 8, Denner extended his lead to 0.675″ and looked set for his victory march, improving his situation with each lap.
At mid-race, Denner was leading by 1,3”, doing fast laps with the regularity of a metronome. Travisanutto attacked his team-mate Celenta for 6th position. Pex attacked Hiltbrand and moved up to 4th. Van Walstijn moved up to 7th place, passing Celenta. Vigano was closing in on Ippolito for the finish. Iglesias had moved up to 9th place, passing Stan Pex. Denner maintained his advantage on Ippolito at more than 2,5″ and he took the third French victory of the meeting with the fastest lap in the race. 3.4″ behind Ippolito was able to hold off Vigano. Jorrit Pex finished 4th, Hiltbrand 5th ahead of Travisanutto and van Walstijn. Iglesias secured 9th place with a gain of five positions, Adrien Renaudin (Tony Kart/Vortex) finished 11th and first of his team. 21st place for Gabin Leuillet (Birel ART/TM) ahead of Yohan Soguel (Oberon/TM) and Louis Bonsaudo (Intrepid/TM) finished 30th.
Info Kartcom with Kartlink / Photo © KSP