ABkC News January 2004

Annual General Meeting: 29th November at Telford

Around forty people attended the AGM representing 16 out of the 31 member clubs.  In his address, Chairman Russell Anderson thanked the steering group for their support, Paul Gladstone of the BKIA and Rod Taylor, the new MSA Kart Sporting Committee (KSC) chairman for attending, Cumbria Kart Club for organising the Inter Nations and welcomed Honorary President  Steve Chapman. He explained the coming changes in the 125 gearbox classes and said a special MSA sub-group is looking into the performance and ages for junior kart classes.  In our championship series, he noted that whilst Super 1 was strong, Super 4 suffered from the cancellation of the Kimbolton round.  He also noted that the resignation of Steve Chapman from the KSC has had a huge impact, not least upon the MSA.  Doors are opening for negotiation and a new framework for the control of karting is mooted for ratification at the February Council meeting. 

Secretary Graham Smith had issued three or four newsletters to clubs during the year, and represented the ABkC on the Kart Control Board.  He had worked with Paul Gladstone, the editor of the MSA Kart Yearbook (the Gold Book), on the 2004 issue, kept the website updated and contributed strategically to future policy.  The Start Karting brochure would be prepared and printed as usual.  Recently he had been one of a small group preparing regulations for the World Formula (UK).  Many clubs had written to complain about the impending loss of the Yellow and Black quarter flag, resulting in a recommendation from the extra KSC meeting.  The MSA Executive has confirmed that now insurance worries have been overcome it will be kept, and ratified at Council.

Treasurer Ian Rennison reported that although 31 clubs remained in membership, the derived income was lower, additional expenses were incurred on legal fees (fighting a spurious claim from a karting accident) and for seminars.  A coil tester had been purchased for our scrutineers.  Income was derived from licencing O Plate meetings and the resultant overall income over expenditure was £1790.  St. Athan (now Llandow) KC have repayed the loan.  The balance, including £19000 on deposit is £19281.  He said there should be no increase in membership fees.  It was noted that Cardiff, which is sadly inactive, has resigned membership.  They were thanked for their previous unbroken support. 

The steering group were voted in un-changed, as follows:

Chairman:                                             Russell Anderson              

Secretary:                                            Graham Smith

100cc Technical:                                Neil Hann

Class One positions: Gary Parker, Alan Bryant

Nigel Edwards  & Cadet: Paul Klaassen      

Gearbox Technical: Derek Price    

Gearbox Positions: Mike Coombs, Malcolm Fell,
Simon Goodfellow, Steve Clayton

Ian Rennison will again be co-opted as Treasurer.

The formal part of the meeting closed, to discuss issues put forward by clubs.  Firstly Whilton Mill proposed a vote of no confidence in the MSA, Steve Chapman explaining that he had investigated having the ABkC run karting.  Since his resignation from KSC, the quashing of Council’s decision to retain the Yellow/Black flag being the last straw, he had met with Colin Hilton, MSA Chief Executive but did not change his mind.  He credited Colin Hilton with being a great asset for karting, but believed karting could be organised cheaper.  His suggestion was to have licences which would include insurance for drivers, officials and mechanics.  At the moment he thinks some (commercial) clubs are effectively paying twice over for insurance.  He admitted that long circuit would have to stay MSA, admitting that many drivers would need one of each licence.  Russell Anderson said the major clubs would not support such a move, and in any case no formal resolution could be taken until the next AGM or an EGM.  He was having constructive talks with the MSA for the ABkC to play a more formal role.  No vote was taken.  Rod Taylor noted that he has been pressing in vain, through the Judicial Panel, for an entrants licence for junior’s fathers and it was suggested that the review should include karting aspects of the Judicial procedures. 

A club chairman added that the ABkC did not spend enough money publicising its part, drivers think they are going MSA racing, they are actually ABkC racing.

Next Shenington Kart Club deplored the late notice and lack of consultation over the introduction of the engine changes in TKM Extreme.  Mike Coombs said such a major change should be given 6 – 12 months notice and start on a 1st January and not 1st February.  At least two major club meetings were to be held on 1st February, and it was not clear if all drivers would have the opportunity to convert their engines in time.  Rod Taylor said decisions have already been taken to strengthen N.1.3 and amendment procedures.  Russell Anderson said he would be instigating a more formal procedure between the ABkC and commercial classes which are also affiliated with the ABkC to run national championships.  Two informal votes were taken, one showed no club present was in favour of having the 115cc introduced in 2004, the other showed a majority in favour if the ABkC was to issue this as policy.  It was resolved to have the Chairman/ Secretary to meet with Tal-Ko immediately.  At that meeting Tal-Ko representatives said that it would be commercial suicide to delay, they had ordered a large quantity of pistons, some of which would arrive in January and the rest in February.  They turned down the request to delay.  However it is understood the changes have not yet had MSA approval.  Alan Turney of Tal-Ko apologised for the breakdown in discussion and agreed to supply free of charge to all ABkC clubs any new scrutineers tools needed for the 115cc engine.  He also agreed to inform the ABkC formally of any class changes by 1st June, and suggested that Junior Intermediate would probably have changes for 2005.

2004 ABkC O Plate Meetings dates:

25 July: All Gearbox classes (not Jnrs) - Three Sisters

15 August: F.A, ICA, JICA, 100 National, Junior Gearbox – Rowrah

22 August: Cadet Comer W.60, WTP and Honda – Whilton Mill

5 September: All Rotax classes including Max 175 – Warden Law

TBA: TKM 2 & 4-stroke – Llandow

ARKS Tests: The test at clubs will cost £68.50 in 2004 which includes VAT as ARKS is now a VAT registered company.  VAT will not be applicable in the Channel Islands.  Most schools have always charged VAT.  A seminar for ARKS Examiners was held at the London Kart Show.

Junior Pushers: Discussions have been held with the British Marshals Club, and they will welcome junior guardians as members at £17.50 per annum.  An official badge will be issued.  All junior fathers and team mechanics are welcome at the marshals training day to be held at Whilton Mill on 18th January.  Contact Peter Cox on 01295 257674 for details.  Whether or not the junior fathers have had training, they can still be signed on as marshals so long as they receive a briefing by the Chief Marshal or Clerk of the Course before going track-side during junior races.  They must be in a marshals post or behind a barrier.  Advice on do’s and don’ts must be given.

2003 CIK bodywork: As we understand it, the new bodywork can be fitted to 2004 homologation Formula TKM karts so long as the kart was supplied with the new style fitment positions.  The complete set must be used but shortening the CIK sidebars to keep the pods within the plane of the wheels is permitted.

 MiniMax: The new exhaust restrictor, mandatory in 2004, is to be 20.3mm, as supplied by JAG.  No inlet restrictor is required now.  Please note that as mentioned in the July issue, all Rotax classes must adhere to the standard 30/30 idle jetting.

Honda Junior: The combustion volume for the GX160 engine as used in the class is to be 31.5cc, measured to the top of the TKM measuring plug in the plug hole.  This can be set with standard GX160 head gaskets plus a mixture of GX200 gaskets if required.

Junior Gearbox:  Subject to MSA approval the slick tyres will change to the SS-55 in 2004.  Tests have shown this tyre is a couple of tenths slower than the M15B (which will be allowed up to the end of March) but is much more durable.  The cost is the same.

Comer W.60: The fiche will be available by the end of 2003.  Nine sealing agents have been appointed.

TKM Extreme: We have been informed that the new size engine produces up to 18.5 bhp and drivers should typically use three less teeth than before, along with about 15mm longer exhaust flex.  First bore pistons should arrive mid-January, and other bores sometime in February.  Although clubs are having difficulty devising a fair system for the introduction of the bigger engine into club championships, it would appear the extra power is being wholeheartedly welcomed by drivers.

World Formula (UK): The MSA have approved the regulations (see website) for ABkC clubs and enabling a challenge series within the Super 2.  It was decided the winter was a bad time to carry out ABkC tyre evaluations so they will be done in the summertime.  For 2004, the Dunlop SL3 and KT3 wet have been chosen.  After lots of debate the weight is settling as 155kg.  Any chassis will be permitted in 2004, to give British manufacturers the time to make chassis to the CIK design for 2005.  The only engine homologated at the moment is the Briggs and Stratton, supplied by Zoom, sealed and with a logbook.  Other engines can be admitted annually.

CIK News:  The FIA World Council received the special report on the CIK and decided to delay a 4-stroke World Championship until at least 2006 (with 2-stroke in parallel).  The 4-stroke engine will now be only one cylinder and will have to have fuel injection and catalyst technologies.  Although the CIK are still committed to a change to 4-stroke they will contribute to the EC forthcoming report on recreational engines and further discuss the introductory dates along with the length of time 2-strokes can be used in the CIK championships.  It is also understood another look at the 2-stroke capacity is being studied.  From 2005 it is proposed that only one engine and one chassis will be permitted in the CIK championships.

O Plate Winners: Congratulations to all, and especially to Chris Rogers who went on to claim the prize Formula 3 test after a ‘shoot-out’ at Silverstone.

Formula A: Jason Edgar

ICA: Sam Hill

100 National: Chris Rogers

Formula TKM: Ben Cruttenden

Formula Junior TKM: Lee Bell

Junior Intermediate TKM: Adam Rodgers

Please note there is no JICA O Plate.  All seeded drivers are shown on the website.  Stars of Tomorrow British Cadet Championship is still the subject of an appeal by the organisers against the Anthony Moss re-instatement by the MSC tribunal.

Awards: Both Super 1 and Super 4 have their awards on January 10th, S1 at the Autosport Show, S4 in the evening in Solihull, including TKM4-stroke S1/S2. 

(Editor Graham Smith, email secretary@abkc.org.uk)

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