Kart champion secures late deal

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BUGBROOKE kart champion Ronan McKenzie, who was forced to turn down a works assisted KF3 drive in Italy due to lack of funding earlier this year, has secured a last-minute deal.

This will allow him to make the step up to the KF3 class and compete in the 2012 MSA British Super One championship.

The championship has a pedigree stretching back 27 years. Competitors over the years included top drivers such as David Coulthard, Jason Plato, Dario Franchitti, Daniel Wheldon, Anthony Davidson, Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton.

Dorset-based PKP Motorsport, the factory team of Danish kart manufacturer Dino, stepped in at the eleventh hour. They signed the talented youngster on a factory-backed deal after McKenzie impressed team principals Leon Cole and Sean Girdler.

Girdler said “To have Ronan McKenzie on board with PKP Motorsport was a big goal for us, and we are delighted that we have managed to secure him as a team driver with this last-minute deal.”

Cole added “We are really excited for the 2012 KF3 campaign and with Ronan joining us we believe we have a strong team.”

Despite competing on a limited budget since 2006 with his dad Jason as mechanic on weekends, in the Easykart series, McKenzie has had several top 20 finishes in Europe. He has three UK titles under his belt, including winning the 2010 Cadet UK Championship and “E” Plate Open Championship aged just 11.

McKenzie graduated to the Easykart Junior class in 2011, finishing third in the UK Championship, with a debut win and a clutch of podiums.

He went on to dominate the Junior “E” Plate Open Championship in February this year, winning all races unchallenged from pole, becoming the first driver to win the title in two different classes.

McKenzie made his KF3 class debut in the first round at PF International in April.

This was barely a week after joining the team and gave a credible performance taking valuable championship points over the weekend.

“This is an amazing chance for me and there will be a lot to learn in my rookie year, going from my Dad running me to being part of a factory team,” said McKenzie, who is also an Associate Driver of Cranfield University’s prestigious Motorsport Programme.

“I’m really grateful to PKP Motorsport and Dino for giving me this fantastic opportunity and I’m very excited about the season ahead,” he added.

McKenzie’s next race was round two of the KF3 Super One championship which was due to be staged last week at Whilton Mill, Daventry.