The Kartódromo Internacional do Algarve has been selected to host the first of four events in the FIA Karting European Championship – OK & OK-Junior from 7th to 10th April 2022 in Portimão (PRT). With more than 150 of the world’s best drivers competing, the sporting confrontation promises to be one of the most interesting to watch at the start of the season on a track renowned for its selectivity.
The FIA Karting European Championship – OK & OK-Junior has 153 entries from 44 nations, divided equally between the two categories. The Prime tyres for the OK class will be supplied by MG Tyres, while Vega will supply the Option tyres for the OK-Junior class.
A number of new regulations will come into force from this event. The number of new slick tyres allowed in the practice sessions will be limited to four sets (for the day of Thursday after the first session, the official Free Practice on Friday and the warm-up). The duration of the Qualifying sessions has been reduced from eight to six minutes. The Qualifying Phase is completed by two Super Heats. Longer than a Qualifying Heat, the Super Heats (15 to 20 km) take place on Sunday morning, with the Qualifying Heats finishing on Saturday evening, to give drivers an extra opportunity to reach the Final.
The Kartódromo Internacional do Algarve in southern Portugal hosted the FIA Karting World Championship – OK & OK-Junior in November 2020. Located within a superb complex dedicated to motor sports, the kart track offers a 1531-metre long layout, full of elevation changes, fast and spectacular. Its selectivity is no longer in question and the quality of its facilities is unanimously appreciated.
Talent does not just come with age in OK
The reigning FIA Karting European Champion – OK Andrea Kimi Antonelli (ITA) is now devoting himself to single-seaters, but the FIA Karting World Champion – OK Tuukka Taponen (FIN) will be in the running, along with the 2021 FIA Karting World Champion – OK-Junior Kean Nakamura-Berta (GBR) and 2020 Freddie Slater (GBR), who was crowned on this Portuguese circuit. Among the experienced protagonists, we can count on Artem Severiukhin, Joe Turney (GBR), Juho Valtanen (FIN) and Luigi Coluccio (ITA), as well as Arvid Lindblad (GBR), Evan Giltaire (FRA), Matheus Morgatto Alvarenga (BRA), Oscar Pedersen (SWE) and Cristian Bertuca (ITA). The rising generation is facing its elders with talents like Tomass Stolcermanis (LVA), Ean Eyckmans (BEL), Enzo Deligny (FRA), David Walther (DNK), Alex Powell (JAM)…
OK-Junior: no shortage of contenders
The precociousness of the young talents in OK-Junior is now a well established fact, but the importance of one or two years of experience at the highest level remains an element to be taken into account in the evaluation of the forces present. Kirill Dzitiev, Nathan Tye (GBR), Oleksandr Bondarev (UKR), Andres Cardenas (PER), Dmitry Matveev, Lucas Fluxa Cross (ESP), Guillaume Bouzar (LUX), Anatoly Khavalkin and others are well equipped to aim for the title of FIA Karting European Champion – OK-Junior. The list of drivers capable of making a name for themselves in Portimão is much longer and the degree of uncertainty as to the Final result remains very high at the start of the event.