Shenington – Bite Size Track Guide
by Niki Richardson
Shenington is yet ANOTHER track that I raced back in the early 90’s, winning a Super One round there back in 93 and then winning a club meeting in one of my final races…from 28th on the grid! Now on paper it looks very simple but actually, it’s not so easy because EVERY corner is key and it’s so easy to make a mistake and carry too much speed into one of these key corners.
So, we’ll start at the Start/Finish and we should be right over to the right hand side of the circuit, straddling the white line as we approach the left handed Turn 1 (Park Bend). Now the key to this corner is to exit over to the left hand-side because the right handed Turn 2 (Café) arrives immediately which means the apex for Turn 1 is extremely late. In good conditions, Turn 1 should be completely flat out but also note, be careful about taking too much inside kerb as it can easily mess up your braking point for Turn 2. Overtakes are possible here which I’ll explain at the end of the lap.
Turn 2 is your first key corner and boy it can be a frustrating corner! Firstly it’s so easy to brake a fraction too late and overshoot as you try and shave a few tenths off under brakes and then also it’s so easy to brake too early and therefore turn in too early and lump the nasty inside kerb! Again, this is a key corner because you’re flat out from here all the way through Turn 3 (Pits Bend) to the braking zone of Turn 4 (Stratford) so just keep it simple, let the kart run nice and wide on the exit, carrying all that moment on the exit. Turn 2 is an overtaking opportunity but it’s very easy for this move to go wrong if you make a late move due to the braking zone being so close to the corner so make sure you’re in striking distance if you do decide to go for an overtake here!
Like I previously mentioned, Turn 3 is easy flat out so just take a nice smooth line though and keep the steering to a minimum, exiting right over to the right hand-side of the circuit.
So we should drift back over to the left hand-side of the circuit as we approach the braking zone of Turn 4 which is a sharp right handed hairpin. Under brakes, you should be aggressive as you dare but again it’s all too easy to out-brake yourself so don’t attack it too much as again, it’s all about that important exit! Just like Turn 2, there is a nasty inside kerb so get near it but do not touch it before letting the kart run nice and wide on the exit, running the outside kerb. Please remember not to get on the gas too early as it’s easy to run too wide and get beached on the outside kerb which can cause some serious damage to the underside of the kart.
Turn 4 is your next overtaking opportunity on the track.
So once we’ve exited Turn 4 you’ll head down a medium sized straight towards Turns 5, 6 and 7 the right, left, right chicane. The key part of the Chicane is Turn 6 which means flicking the kart in for Turn 5, scrubbing off a little speed as you keep the kart over to the right before jumping on the brakes for Turn 6. Again, just keep it simple here, turn in take a little bit of inside kerb before nailing the exit which means not running too wide on the exit because the flat out Turn 7 quickly arrives so exit about a kart width away from the white line on the right before turning in for Turn 7, running some inside kerb and letting the kart run wide on the exit. Again, like Turns 2 and 4, there is a huge run to the next braking zone at Turn 9 (Wilkins).
So we’re coming towards the end of the lap as you travel down a long straight approaching the flat out right handed Turn 8 (Hangar Corner). All you need to do for Turn 8 is swing the kart from the left over to the right and get close to but not touching the huge inside kerbs before letting the kart drift over to the left as you prepare for the right handed Turn 9. Now you have a good reference point here for braking and that is the marshal’s post which is situated on the inside of the corner. Again this is a key corner so don’t charge into here too quickly and overt-shoot or run wide on the exit, just brake so that you can hook up that apex which is situated mid-corner and so that you can exit without sweeping too wide. I mention about sweeping wide because on the exit there’s a rather annoying left handed kink which leads you back to the Start/Finish line so if you end up running too wide you’ll needlessly have to steer around this kink which will affect your momentum on the exit. Remember you’re on the gas for as long as 12 seconds as you exit Turn 9 and that means your next braking point is at Turn 2 so the run here is oh so important! Again, Turn 9 is another key overtaking spot.
As mentioned, Turn 10 is a slight left handed kink but as a handy little tip, keep it fairly tight to the left and you’ll take the shortest route to the Start/Finish line to complete your lap and this could also allow you to make an overtake as you head towards Turn 1.
- Turn 2 (Café)
- Turn 4 (Stratford Corner)
- Turn 6 (The Chicane)
- Turn 9 (Wilkins)
- Turn 1
- Turn 2
- Turn 4
- Turn 9