By Karting1 ~ November 30th, 2011. Filed under: Kart Racing News.
The rise of Beitske Visser has been nothing short of remarkable. Here’s a driver who only two years ago no one really knew much about. She had some notable success here and there, but in 2010 you started to here some rumblings of a great new driver hitting the KZ2 scene that was really exciting. Moving into 2011, she became one of the very few drivers to break into the KZ1 lead pack, a pack which included the likes of Jonathon Thonon and Bas Lammers.
Beitske chatting to her mechanic at one of the season’s highlights – the SKUSA Supernationals. Pic by KSP.fr
Most notably she lead the KZ1 World Cup, however damage to the kart put her out of contention “It was a great disappointment. I know that I had the capacities to achieve something good”. Having dominated the WSK Master Series and the BNL as well as grabbing pole in the season opening Winter Cup there is no doubt a major international win isn’t too far away.
So what’s the magic ingredient? The success of Nyck De Vries and Max Verstappen suggests the Dutch are getting something right, but Beitske disagrees “I don’t think it has anything to do with Holland, but we are really focused on what we’re doing and we give ourselves 200% to reach our goals.”
Join Beitske onboard in a KZ1 European Championship warm up session at Wackersdorf
Having just come back from America racing at the Supernats and placing fifth, Beitske describes why she enjoys the event “To go to America for a race is already special and it’s amazing to see how different the people there are. There are drivers that come from all over the world to do this race so the level is really high. It’s a really good title to have on your CV.”
Beitske finished 5th at this years Supernats. The spoils went to French driver Anthony Abbasse. Pic by KSP.fr
With the demands on drivers so high in today’s karting, Beitske describes her fitness plan ”I don’t really have a diet but of course I eat healthy. When I’m at home I run every day for about 1 hour and I do some fitness. I like kickboxing. I don’t have any physical problems during races so I think this is good.”
2011 has seen an interesting development. Drivers are shying away from the KF classes to concentrate on the KZ classes. Beitske explains why she entered instead of going the more traditional single-gear route “In 2009 I was driving Junior MAX and after half a year my mechanic said to me to try KZ. I thought that it would be better to do KZ instead of KF as preparation for cars”.
“After a few tests I was already quite fast and we decided to speak with Intrepid. After I did a test there they were really happy with my performance and we made the deal”.
So what is the greatest challenge of racing a KZ1 kart at the highest levels? “It’s the fastest and heaviest karting class and I drive against the most experienced drivers, who are former world champions, so it’s really great if I can beat them.”
Beitske stormed into the car scene when she won a race in the Dutch TT at Assen in her first weekend. Beitske explaines how KZ helped her win “Of course it feels really great to win this race, especially because I didn’t test in the car before so we didn’t expected it. The fact I drove KZ before helped a lot cause I had already got a good feeling on how to shift and how the car will react to things.”
Kart damage put an end to a possible World Cup win in KZ1 this year. Pic by KSP.fr
So where does Beitske see her future? “Next year I want to make the step to formula cars, but I also want to race all the KZ1 races which is possible. My ultimate goal is Formula 1.”
To a certain extent it will be very sad to see Beitske move to cars. It’s always good to have new faces in the karting scene that can take a major title or two and develop. Shake the scene up a bit. But also, you know that someone like Beitske clearly has the talent to go all the way. Like De Vries, Beitske is producing performance that is catching everyone’s attention.