Arnside based kart racer Josh Smith’s summer of success continued with two wins in the latest two rounds of the hotly contested ABkC Super One Cadet Comer Championship.
Fresh from his maiden triumph in the MSA British Cadet Championship at Glan Y Gors in North Wales and his subsequent victory in the prestigious Dragon Masters Trophy at the same venue, 13-year-old Smith returned to the challenging, undulating GYG circuit for the fourth round of the Super One Championship before heading to his home track of Rowrah in the Lake District for round five.
On both occasions the Dallam High School pupil, nicknamed The Joker in the karting paddock, proved why a leading motoring newspaper tipped him as one of their 50 drivers to watch in 2012 with two wins and two other podium finishes in the four point scoring finals.
Smith has spent the entire Super One season fighting back from a catastrophic opening round, which saw him suffer a carburettor failure on the rolling lap of the first final, but his typical never say die attitude meant that he arrived at Glan Y Gors hungry for his third major win at the track in 2012.
“GYG is one of the few tracks that I’ve got a lot of experience on,” beamed Smith, who overcame a slightly off-colour qualifying effort to post two top four finishes in his heat races and secure a second row grid slot for the first of the two point-scoring finals.
“I feel really confident around GYG and this is my last big race here as a Cadet so I was looking forward to saying a nice goodbye to it.”
True to his word, Smith powered home to a close third place finish in the first final, which set him up nicely for the televised second final, which turned out to be one of the best races of the year.
“I came into the last lap in third place behind Dean Macdonald and Enaam Ahmed,” said Smith, who drives for multiple title winning outfit Fusion Motorsport.
“Half way around the last lap Enaam went wide and I took second place, then Dean over defended with two corners to go and I was able to get around
the outside of him, which gave me the inside line for the last corner and I took the win.”
With one sensational victory under his belt Josh was keen to maintain that momentum at Rowrah, where he was cruelly robbed of the British Open O Plate title earlier this year when he was stripped of victory for alleged contact with another driver.
“I had to prove a point that people can knock me down but that I’ll always come back,” commented Smith, who came into the event sitting fourth in the points table after his win at Glan Y Gors.
“It was upsetting as I’d shown everyone how to drive all weekend.”
Smith quickly showed the rest of the field that he had lost none of his pace as he beat his Fusion teammate Enaam Ahmed, by half a second to win his first heat before suffering at the hands of the officials once again in heat two when he received a five place penalty, which dropped him from second to seventh even though he was still mystified as to the reason why.
The rain arrived before the two point scoring finals and Josh was quickly on the move in the first final, picking up several places from his grid position to take third, which meant a second row starting spot for the televised second final where once again, his teammate Ahmed would be his main rival.
“I got a good start and moved into second place behind Enaam,” recalled Josh. “I passed him before the end of the first lap and he put me under constant pressure for the rest of the race but there was no way he was going to get through.”
Through the mist and spray Josh took the chequered flag 0.4 seconds ahead of Ahmed for his second win in as many rounds, a result that elevated him into second place in the Super One Championship with two rounds remaining.
“It’s my best ever result and it makes up for the O Plate a bit,” beamed Josh from the top step of the podium.
“I’m 17 points behind Enaam and I’m the form man in the championship so I’ve got nothing to lose.”