James Wharton certainly put in one of his best performances in an FIA Karting event since he joined the OK category to pursue his career before moving to single-seaters in 2022. Fast, consistent and combative, the young Australian in the Ferrari Driver Academy colours climbed from 21st to 12th place, earning hard-earned points against some formidable competition.
James Wharton, who has been with the Parolin Motorsport team for the past two years, was keen to reap the rewards of his hard work during Free Practice in this highly competitive European OK Championship that took place at the Naples International Circuit in Sarno (9th-11th July), the third of four events. “I have a good feeling at this Italian track. It’s where I scored my first points in the European OK Championship in 2020.”
A substantial gain in places in the Final
The Parolin Motorsport team is lucky to have several drivers in its squad, which creates a feedback loop between all these young hopefuls. “We were able to improve the equipment regularly and this allowed me to be among the fastest of the group in Qualifying“. Ranked 5th in his group, 18th out of 62 overall, James had a clean run in the Qualifying Heats. “At this level, it’s important to finish each heat avoiding collisions and mechanical problems, in order to consistently achieve the best ranking. This is what I managed to do by being very consistent in each heat, while making the most of the package at my disposal.”
21st on the starting grid for the Final, James Wharton showed his fighting spirit in a crowded field. “The aim was clearly to move up the order to increase my points tally in this FIA European Karting Championship. This Final wasn’t easy, every lap was a real battle“. At his best physically, technically and mentally, the Australian driver made a series of overtaking moves to finally reach 12th place. “It was clearly the best result I could have hoped for in these conditions where the gaps between the drivers are extremely tight.”
Three weeks after his excellent performance in the European KZ2 Championship – the category for gearbox karts – James Wharton has now achieved another positive result amongst the future hopefuls of motorsport. This is certainly a good omen before the upcoming European events, which still look as difficult as they are important…
James Wharton – Press release / Photo © KSP