Bahrain in the spotlight

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Columns: News and Previews
The Kingdom of Bahrain will once again host two CIK-FIA World Championships after the success of the 2013 edition. The new OK and OK-Junior categories will benefit from the exceptional welcome and surroundings of the Bahrain International Kart Circuit and the magic of night races to reveal their first World Champions.

The Competition will take place from 16th to 19th November 2016 at the same time as the 6 Hours of Bahrain which will conclude the FIA ​​Endurance World Championship a few hundred meters away on the Bahrain International Circuit.

Fast and undulating, the route of the Bahrain International Kart Circuit has always been unanimously popular among the Drivers. The track, very wide in places, allows different lines to be used to encourage overtaking. The very powerful lighting ensures excellent visibility conditions while preserving a unique atmosphere for the many races taking place after sunset. Indeed, the particular schedule of this Competition will start from 1:30 pm and finish in the evening, the Finals being scheduled at night, on Saturday, November 19th between 6:30 pm and 8 pm (UTC + 3).

The only CIK-FIA World Competition organised outside Europe this season, the double Bahrain World Championship is receiving significant financial support from its hosts for equipment transportation, travel, accommodation and food for the Drivers and their mechanics fully supported by the Kingdom.

On the sporting front, the Competition looks very open. If the start of the season for the new OK engines has revealed a certain hierarchy in performance, it is not impossible that the cards will be shuffled for Bahrain thanks to the hard work of the factories and the teams since the last European race at Genk (BEL) at the end of July. Predictions are therefore very difficult to make before the start of the Competition. The total number of entries is approaching 150 drivers, a very honourable number for such a high level Competition.

48 Drivers are expected to compete for the prestigious 2016 CIK-FIA World Champion title, with a strong Finnish participation. The top-seeded champions will be on track with the CIK-FIA European Champion Pedro Hiltbrand (CRG / Parilla / Vega) and his two main rivals: Tom Joyner (Zanardi / Parilla / Vega), awarded in 2013 on the same track, and the outgoing Champion Karol Basz (Kosmic / Vortex / Vega). The experienced Drivers such as Ben Hanley (Croc Promotions / TM Racing / Vega), Felice Tiene (CRG / Parilla / Vega) and Jordon Lennox-Lamb (BirelART / Parilla / Vega) will undoubtedly have a say against the rising generation. Among the young, some have already had the opportunity to showcase themselves in OK: Alexander Smolyar (Tony Kart / Vortex / Vega), Clement Novalak (Tony Kart / Vortex / Vega), Christian Lundgaard (Ricciardo Kart / Parilla / Vega), Hannes Janker (CRG / Parilla / Vega), and many others are among the outsiders to follow.

The CIK-FIA Junior World Championship has nearly 100 entries from 32 countries, with Italy being the most represented. The battle should be tough from the Qualifying Heats onwards. The biggest favourites are among the top 10 of the last CIK-FIA European Junior Championship, won by Finlay Kenneally (FA Kart / Vortex / Vega) ahead of Noah Watt (Tony Kart / Vortex / Vega) and Victor Martins (Kosmic / Parilla / Vega) who arrives in Bahrain after an impressive series of victories. David Vidales Arenjo (Tony Kart / Vega), Sami Taoufik (FA Kart / Vortex / Vega), Caio Jetta Collet (BirelART / Parilla / Vega) or Isac Blomqvist (Tony Kart / Vortex / Vega) will have strong attributes to take their revenge. Callum Bradshaw (Tony Kart / Vortex / Vega) has been invited by the OTK Kart Group to participate in this Competition with the Tony Kart Racing Team as a reward for his victory in the CIK-FIA Karting Academy Trophy.

Press Release by: FIA Karting - 14/11/16

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