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Scott Barnes tastes early success in karting Winter Series

Top spot: Scott Barnes stands on top of the podium after claiming victory in the Masters Shifter Class in Skusa Winter Series at the AMR Motorplex in Homestead, Florida

Scott Barnes continued his impressive recent form with a victory in the Skusa Winter Series at the AMR Motorplex in Homestead, Florida.

The island's top driver headed to the event aiming to build on the momentum of a podium-laden outing at the at the World Karting Association Daytona Kartweek last week in which he secured two first-place finishes and a further two second places.

With series points up for grabs in both the qualifying heats and finals, Barnes, representing Harden Motorsports, got off to an encouraging start in the Masters Shifters class, finishing second in the heats.

Despite leading the pre-final for eight of the 12 laps the 36-year-old had to settle for second place heading into Saturday’s final race. This time round he was not to be denied, leading from start to finish to take the chequered flag and race win.

“I’ve wanted one of these trophies for years,” said Barnes. “The plan was to go out and try and get one and in the first race I was ale to bring home the first place.

“We weren’t the fastest kart all day but the final race was pure determination to get the win, it was great to get off to a strong start.”

However, Barnes’s fortunes turned on Sunday as he was once again blighted by mechanical issues, just as he had been in Daytona a week previously.

Having again finished the heats in second, he got off to a flying start in the final race, leading for the first ten laps before disaster struck as a loose gear forced him to retire from the race.

“Sunday was frustrating because having won on Saturday it was hard to have to retire when another win looked likely,” he added. “It seems to be a recurring theme at the moment where I seem to go from having success to suffering bad luck.

“It’s hard because overall it was a great weekend getting that race win on Saturday but it ended on a sour note because you have no chance to redeem yourself.

“It’s all part of racing. It was a really tough track, both physically on the drivers and karts. A lot of the curbs on the corners were concrete so it was inevitable karts were going to break down and have faults, sometimes there is nothing you can do about it.”

Despite the setback, it may not ultimately affect Barnes’s overall standings in the series with each driver able to drop one result from either from the heats or finals towards their final points total.

That means, should Barnes could opt to drop his DNF result from Sunday after the second race weekend, at the same track, on February 12 to 14.

“Hopefully I can use that one as the drop race and have better luck in the next round next month,” he added. If I can have some clean races next time out that would be great.“

While the location remains the same for next month, the track is reversed meaning despite Barnes enjoying some success this time round, there is no guarantee of a repeat next month.

“It’s a case of having to learn the track over again,” he said. “Although it is new lines to learn I should hopefully be able to pick it up pretty quickly. I think I’ll be hitting the practice track a day earlier to try and get a head start.”

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Published January 12, 2021 at 9:31 am (Updated January 12, 2021 at 9:31 am)

Scott Barnes tastes early success in karting Winter Series

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