Ellough Park – Bite Size Track Guide
by Niki Richardson
Ellough Park is most definitely in my top 2 favourite circuits on the CLUB100 calendar, the first section of the circuit probably being my most favourite section of any circuit. We tend to go to Ellough in the summer months which means the levels of grip tends to be very high and this also makes the circuit very physical.
The track has been extended a couple of times in the past 10-15 years with the newest layout being the most technical compared to all the others with numerous overtaking opportunities available.
So we’re heading down the start/finish line towards the fast right handed turn 1 and the key here is to not out brake yourself as it’s so easy to do, so brake quite hard and aim to use the nice flat inside kerb whilst getting on the power and running nice and wide on the exit as you use a little outside kerb. Note – it’s very easy to get on the power a fraction of a second too early which will make the kart slide wide on the exit and will force you over the outside kerb and onto the bumpy run off area, this will really affect your speed on the exit and the run down to turns 2 and 3 as well as potentially damaging the underside of the kart. Turn 1 is your first overtaking opportunity but don’t run too wide as it’s easy to undercut on the exit.
So you’ll exit Turn 1 and head down a short straight before arriving at the right handed Turns 2 and 3. On approach you’ll be travelling at a high rate of knots so you’ll want a quick stab on the brakes before flicking and throwing the kart into the corner aiming to clip both inside kerbs Now Turns 2 and 3 are almost 1 big double apexed corner so you can’t carry too much speed through Turn 2 otherwise it’ll compromise Turn 3. On the exit of Turn 3, don’t run too wide on the exit as the kerb is protected by a huge stack of tires.
Again, we’ll be heading down a short little straight before we arrive at Turn 4 which is a tight left hand hairpin. On the approach you should be positioned over to the right hand side and the key to this corner is DON’T BRAKE TOO LATE because it’s so important not to scrub speed and lose momentum or to run too wide on the exit. So, just keep it simple, nibble the inside kerb, let the kart run wide on the exit (not too wide though) and keep those revs up. Turn 4 is your second overtaking opportunity of the lap.
Turn 5 is a corner which I compare to the 130R corner at Suzuka and what I mean by this is that the corner is a quick flat out left handed curve which in normal dry conditions should be relatively easy, but if the track is a little damp or if your attempting to overtake someone then it can then become quite a daunting corner with a possibility of going off and having a pretty hefty shunt!
Now my advice is to get the widest possible entry into the corner before easing the kart left, taking as much of the inside kerb as possible (which gives you the straightest possible run through the corner) before you let the kart drift to the middle of the track on the exit. Just remember not to drop your left hand wheels completely over the inside kerb as the kart will ground out causing possible damage and affecting your momentum at the same time.
The right handed Turn 6 should be taken similarly to turn 5 (flat out) but just note that it’s a touch more difficult as there’s less room for error. Now all you need to do here is be a bit brave by flicking the kart in whilst aiming for the inside kerb as literally slide your way through corner then over the slight hump on the exit before you get to turn 7.
So you’ll be exiting turn 6 virtually sideways before you go over the crest of the hump and into the braking zone of Turn 7. Now the key here is again, don’t brake too late as there is little reward and the left kink of Turn 8 immediately follows so take the easy route through here as it’s all about straight lining the exit.
Now when turning in try turn in, take a little inside kerb before straight lining the exit skimming the stack of tires on the left which is classed as Turn 8 and then let the kart run nice a wide, carrying that momentum down the short straight passed the pits. Turn 6 is your third overtaking sport of the lap.
So, you’ll head passed the pits, drifting over to the left for the right handed Turn 9 hairpin. This is a great little corner and you can really attack this one on the brakes, before turning in and taking some the nice flat inside kerb before letting the kart run wide on the exit. Just note – You don’t won’t to run too wide on the exit because you need to get back over to the right for the following left handed hairpin of Turn 10. Turn 9 is another great overtaking spot!
Turn 10 is a hairpin and is the last major corner on the circuit which is so so important because it’s flat out on the exit, all the way down to Turn 1. So as you approach over to the right, you’ll want to turn in and blip the brake pedal in order to keep the rear end in check before getting on the gas, carrying all that momentum on the exit. The key here is not to run too wide on the exit as you could get a track limits warning if you pop all four wheels over the white line. All there is to do now to complete the lap is pass through the flat out right handed Turn 11 before running the kart over to the left as you cross the Start/Finish line to complete the lap. Turn 10 is the final overtaking opportunity of the lap.
- Turn 1
- Turn 4
- Turn 7
- Turn 10
- Turn 1
- Turn 4
- Turn 7
- Turn 9
- Turn 10