A nine-year-old karter from Hassocks has taken home third in the Forest Edge Championships, finishing ahead of several experienced competitors.
Blake Ticehurst took part in the event that regularly attracts 40 plus entrants on race weekends and is contested by around 30 drivers over nine rounds from March to November.
He had put in some strong early season performances to find himself in title contention and regular podium finishes saw him in the top five of the Championship.
Ticehurst’s latest run of results saw him begin the last round of the year in second but only five point ahead of third.
The young karter began the last race at the Andover-based circuit with a third-place finish in the first heat, while title rival Ewan Charman finished seventh.
The second heat saw Ticehurst start in 11th and finish sixth while in the third heat he raced back from 22nd to take seventh.
Unfortunately for Ticehurst, Charman had scored better but was just a single point ahead of Ticehurst going into the final.
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With Charman qualifying second and Ticehurst third, the runners-up spot would be taken by whoever finished in front of the other.
As the race began, the lead swapped between the pair and Max Solarski, but an error from Ticehurst saw him fall to third.
The Hassocks-karter recovered and overtook Solarski and now had Charman in his sights. Ticehurst set the fastest lap of the race as he continued to pursue Charman but time was against him as he finished 0.2 seconds behind his title rival.
Ticehurst was initially upset with his finish but was overjoyed with his late season form.
Both Charman and the Forest Edge Champion, Jake Maynard, have competed for three full seasons at the circuit against Ticehurst’s single season, and both are older than the Hassocks karter, so to be able to challenge the pair shows just how far he has come as a driver.
Ticehurst attracted the attention of the current Forest Edge Championship winning team, Coles Racing, for whom he has now raced for since August. He has also attracted backing and support from the local building firm W&S Building Contractors Ltd and JMS Vehicle Conversions, for which he is very grateful.
2019 will see the young karter contest the Forest Edge Championship again with Coles Racing, and also step up to a full campaign in the Honda Cadet Super One British Championship.