Thursday Night League 2024 Winners Crowned
Daytona Sandown Park's Thursday Night League came to a conclusion last night after 12 epic rounds. In truth, the title contenders were already decided before the round had begun, despite the four drop rounds in place in this competition. Tom Brown had already won the Championship before stepping into the kart for the final, and despite a dramatic 5-round charge from Archie Bullard, it was Logan McAlister's dominance in the mid-season that secured the young driver second place ahead of Bullard by just seven points in the end.
In the SODIs, Jack Harrison's early dominance had made him a strong favourite for the title, however some mid-season turbulence on his part allowed some of his competitors to catch up. Approaching the final round, Jack needed to beat close rival Steve Hannon to secure the title. For Steve to take the title away from Jack, he would have had to finish first with the fastest lap-time set and Harrison would have had to finish outside of the top 3. Luka Nik was certain to secure his place at P3 the podium.
Here's how the final races transpired:
In the DMAX race, Archie Bullard dominated qualifying, securing P1, with Tom Brown in P2 and Antonio Sholin in P3. On lap 2, Tom Brown's attempt to overtake Archie led to a wide manouvere, causing a shift in the race dynamics.
Ethan encountered trouble on lap 6, hitting turn 6 hard. Lap 7 saw Tom Brown losing his grip on 3rd place, adding further unpredictability. By lap 10, the top 2 drivers demonstrated remarkable consistency, skillfully navigating through backmarkers. Archie Bullard set the fastest lap on lap 11 with a time of 58.7 seconds.
Ethan Cloke attempted and eventually succeeded in overtaking Finlay on lap 12. Lap 14 witnessed a closely contested battle for 2nd place, with Rhys making a decisive move into turn 6 on lap 15.
In a surprising turn of events, Antonio dropped from the pack to 5th place on lap 16. The last lap saw Tom Brown retiring, adding a twist to the conclusion.
As the checkered flag waved, Archie Bullard secured a brilliant victory, showcasing exceptional driving skills. Rhys Hurd displayed an excellent performance, climbing from P9 to P2, while Karlis Elmanis made an impressive journey from the back to secure P3.
Top 3 Finishers on the day:
- Archie Bullard
- Rhys Hurd
- Karlis Elmanis
The race delivered intense moments, unexpected twists, and a commendable drive from Archie Bullard, making it a memorable event in the DMAX series.
In the final round of the SODI Thursday Night League on an alternate layout with a challenging, greasy circuit lacking a clear dry line, the race unfolded with widely spread lap times.
At the start, Jack Harrison made a bold move, breaking away from the track, while Tom Nicholls faced setbacks as he bogged down and dropped further back.
Despite significant differences in qualifying, the first few laps saw a surprisingly tight battle. On lap 3, Dan Giles executed a strong move, securing P3 and fending off challenges from Tom Nicholls.
Rafael and Vivek engaged in a spirited battle for P5 on the infield straight, adding excitement to the already intense competition. Meanwhile, Jack Harrison steadily built a 2.7-second gap at the front.
The pack started to spread out, but the race for 5th, 6th, and 7th remained closely contested. A captivating battle between Hannon and Nicholls allowed Jack Harrison to extend his lead to 3.3 seconds, showcasing the competitive spirit on the track.
On lap 11, Tom Nicholls overtook for P2, intensifying the competition. Jack Harrison, meanwhile, began lapping backmarkers, showcasing his dominance.
In a surprising turn, Steve Hannon spun while attempting to overtake a backmarker, allowing Dan Giles to reclaim P3. Jack Harrison set the fastest lap with a time of 1:03.9.
The drama continued as it was revealed that Tom Nicholls was disqualified for being underweight.
As the checkered flag waved, Jack Harrison secured a dominant victory, both in the race and the overall Championship with Steve Hannon now in P2 and Dan Giles in P3. This conclusion added another layer of intensity to the SODI Thursday Night League, highlighting the challenges faced by competitors on the demanding track
SODI Final Championship Standings
1st – Jack Harrison
2nd – Steve Hannon
3rd- Luka Nik (not pictured)
DMAX Final Championship Standings
1st – Tom Brown
2nd – Logan McAlister (not pictured)
3rd- Archie Bullard
To see the full championship points, click here.
Thursday Night League is our most casual Championship, it’s a 12-round competition intended for karting enthusiasts who can’t commit to racing every round, with overall scores being taken from their best eight rounds. Perfect for students and busy professionals after work.
More information on the next season of Thursday Night League can be found here.