PFI Club Race – Alfie Slater

A different but familiar scene from Alfie’s last outing in Belgium, he was now back to the U.K at PFI for the last round of the TVKC winter series.

Friday’s testing started with an adjustment period getting back into his IAME cadet kart from his European kart. It took the first couple sessions, after that he showed really good pace even better than last time visiting the track. After the days testing, we were hopeful of not being in that dreaded B final.

Saturday was practice for the morning then qualifying in the afternoon, the practice sessions were up and down with a couple of things that could’ve been improved on the kart and with Alfie’s driving. As qualifying approached tensions and nerves were rising knowing Alfie was in group B which seemed to be the harder of the groups, the rush to get to the front of the grid as you would get that important extra lap which Alfie was ready for at the front. The green flag dropped everyone rushed out the pits trying to get good track position to do that critical perfect lap, Alfie made it out at the front but with the lack of grip on the opening lap he got caught out on the first corner under the bridge and ran wide allowing other karts to get past and ended in a bit of a bad track position. The first couple of laps past and he was in a bit of a tricky position where he was in a pack of people overtaking and actually getting held up but if he was to roll out and back out of the battling, he could not get a good lap at all. Alfie decided to just go for it and try get a time hopefully without getting held up by any overtaking, the last lap Alfie was in 26th in group and was on a faster lap but with a couple of people overtaking in front, it didn’t allow Alfie to get a good lap in and qualified in 20th place. It was a disappointing qualifying as we had a lot more to show but didn’t actually form into a result.

With an unfortunate qualifying Alfie was 21st on the grid for the heats as there are so many drivers in the class, they are split into 4 separate groups so you only race in 2 of the 4 heats and Alfie was in the group A. The first heat started, and he got a good start getting stuck in but as the pack got to the first hairpin Alfie was on the outside with no way of getting in and dropped a few places. As the race went on, he was pack from 15th to 22nd everyone was battling hard, but Alfie didn’t quite have the fire seen before and didn’t fight hard enough and unfortunately ended up at the back of that pack. The second heat was pretty similar, getting a better start but not fighting hard enough to be ahead of his pack and finished 18th, this meant we were sure to be in the B final with the results he had from the heats.

The other heats had finished, and the results were calculated with Alfie starting 7th in the B final. Alfie didn’t have the best start and dropped down to 10th on the first lap but showed a lot more fire and was attacking the track a lot harder and with better overtaking. He made his way back to 7th battling with the pack he was in showing some amazing overtakes as he was going for a move on 6th place the other driver tried hanging around the outside and caused Alfie to spin making him lose a lot of places and time unfortunately the chances of him making it to the A final was over. But Alfie didn’t give up getting his head down and catching a few people at the back of the back and overtaking then also setting his fastest lap of the weekend and also the fastest middle sector of the race. he finished 19th in the end but it was not a true reflection of what Alfie showed on the Friday testing and the speed he had in the B final, a bit late but once again Alfie showed that he has great potential for being a good racing driver.