Today was the day that the team got their first look at the new racing machines to be use in the upcoming Gokartcentralen Open GP Electric Karting Championship. The team arrived with Johan Windzer, Group Director at Ocean Group a main team sponsor and fellow motorsport enthusiast, so it was an exciting day for the team in many ways.
In an unfortunate turn of events, technical difficulties prevented the teams onboard camera from being used, so the first public onboard video from the team will have to wait until next week. This turned out to be only the first of the unexpected disappointments on the day, however. With a reference time set last week in the old karts of 36.132, the team was looking forward to being the first to break the 36 second barrier on the new track. It just wasn't to be.
After the excitement of the 10 hour LeMans race in Lidköping the previous week, the team was back at its home circuit, Gothenburg's own Gokartcentralen, to concentrate on preparations for the upcoming Open GP Electric Gokart Championship.
The 3rd test of the preseason buildup was an especially tantalizing one, because it saw the new 2016/17 track layout revealed for the first time! Circuit engineers were hard at work preparing the new racing machines for the upcoming season, with venue owner Martin Svensson and chief engineer Viktor Osberg having taken delivery of the new karts only hours previous, and working around the clock to get them ready for action.
Lidköping vid Vänern was the host for Grabko Grand Prix's latest preseason testing exercise, the Widell Driving Experience 10H LeMans Endurance Race, at the famous Lidköping Motorstadion Circuit, a recent staple on the Swedish National Championship calendar.
The team came late to the party, having only been given a chance to enter due to another team dropping out of the competition less than a week to the green flag. Team Principal Dan Grabko, never one to turn down an opportunity to give this fledgling team more experience in different competitions formats, jumped on the chance after learning of the opening and quickly sorted an entry. He struck a partnership with two young local talents, Erik Olsson and Viktor Sällsträm, as well as two former Directors of the Lidköping Karting Club, Pontus Rappéll and Patrik Fajersson. It was a strong combination of youthful enthusiasm and smooth experience, both needed in the long gruelling test of a 10 hour endurance event.
Grabko Grand Prix were on hand for round 5 of the Gothenburg Gokartcenter Summer Cup as part of the team's continuing preparations for the forthcoming season. It was a brisk and overcast evening, foreshadowing a fast approaching Autumn, that promised lowering temperatures as the event went on into the evening. Rain was not a threat, but the prognosis was lowering grips levels as twilight approached, so the order of the day was to get a time in for qualifying as soon as possible.
The team joined up with last season's Open GP Champion, EB Karting, for pre-race preparations, and the championship winning team was kind enough to provide transportation for both outfits. A big shout out and thank you to Erkin and his team for their hospitality!