Ella Stevens takes KZ2 title race down to the wire

Ella Stevens ensured the battle for the KZ2 title in the Wera Tools British Karting Championships will go down to the wire with a spirited comeback at Shenington last weekend [22-23 July].

The 16-year-old made the journey to Oxfordshire as the points leader after widely impressing during her first half-season in the category.

The pace of the Jade Racing Team ace confirmed her potential once more during practice, with Stevens an ever-present at the top of the timesheets during pre-event testing, before then qualifying on the front row in a highly competitive field.

The heats, however, would prove to be a character-building affair for the Gloucestershire-based teenager, with fifth and eighth-placed finishes. The Pre-Final threatened to de-rail the weekend – and perhaps Stevens’ title hopes – but in typical fashion, the rising star dug deep to salvage something from the event.

Starting on the sixth row, Stevens set about climbing the order during the Final, eventually taking the chequered flag a very credible sixth.

It means she will travel to Rowrah, Cumbria on 15-17 September with a chance of still taking the championship crown, with a gap of just 12 points to new leader, Morgan Porter.

Ella Stevens said:

“It wasn’t an ideal weekend for me, with some mixed fortune in the heats, and then a pre-Final result which was always going to make the Final difficult."

“But I always enjoy a challenge, and it was enjoyable on a circuit as tricky to overtake as Shenington to come through the pack to sixth."

“Our objective going into the Final was always just make progress and gain a few spots, which we more than achieved. Even in the traffic whilst passing other karts, I was able to get the second-fastest lap, too, so it’s clear we had the pace, just not the luck this weekend."

“I’m now third in the points heading to Rowrah, but the gap isn’t insurmountable, and we’ve seen just how competitive KZ is this season, so it all can all change very quickly. I’m feeling upbeat and can’t wait to get to Cumbria – it’s all still to play for.”

Alice Powell, Ella Stevens’ Manager said:

“I think to echo Ella’s comments, this was an excellent job in damage limitation after the weekend took a bit of a turn during the heats.

“It’s very easy to underestimate how competitive this series is – this is the pinnacle of UK competition, and Ella’s competing at a brand-new level for 2023. We certainly weren’t expecting to be at the front every weekend, so it’s important that, when we can’t, we’re still banking points as she did."

“A huge thanks to Jade Racing Team and everybody supporting Ella, it makes a huge difference and will be vital as we prepare now for Rowrah, and try to get the championship lead back at the last. Ella’s right, it’s all still very much to play for.”