Although we must wait until 8 July to see the real start to the CIK-FIA “U18” World Championship and Academy Trophy, Competitors who wished to were treated to a trial gallop on 4 June on the Pista Azzura of Jesolo, near Venice (ITA).
Half the Academicians and Drivers of the World Championship for 15-18 year-olds were able to immerse themselves in the specific atmosphere of these competitions of a type recently introduced by the CIK-FIA and, for a whole sunny day, to dispose of the equipment with which they will compete in the coming weeks at Ortona (10 July), at Essay (28 August) and in Bahrain (5 November).
The day before these tests, the Academy Trophy Drivers were allocated by drawing lots their Parolin chassis for the season and spent the day installing their seat, their bodywork decoration and a few other components necessary for the next day’s running, as well as fitting their tyres (LeCont) and filling up their fuel tanks with the E10 petrol supplied by Panta. As for the U18 World Championship Drivers, they got hold of their chassis of the make with which they have entered, and they received by drawing lots a WKE engine.
After this initial day of technical and administrative “formalities” ended by an information session, the Drivers ran on the track on the Saturday from 8h30 to 15h30. As well as using their equipment for the first time, most of them discovered this Jesolo circuit which in the past revealed some prestigious champions. Its course is reputed difficult to learn, so no one was really surprised to see the local Drivers achieve the fastest lap-times, both in the U18 category (Favaro and Marchesan) and in the Academy (Pillon). The time differences were smaller among the 13-15 year-olds, whose level announces itself as very competitive.
While the largest number of Competitors present at these tests were logically Europeans, some Drivers from out of our continent had nonetheless made the trip, like the South-African Chad Maciver, the Venezuelan Sergio Lopez and the Bahrainis Abdulla Al Thawadi and Adeeb Kuzbar.
The rendez-vous is set at the weekend of 8, 9 and 10 July in the Italian Abruzzi, on the brand-new track of Ortona, for the life-size opening of the 2011 CIK-FIA U18 World Championship and Academy Trophy, with 134 Drivers from the five continents!