TKM (karting)

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Formula TKM is a British based karting category raced at club and national championships around the UK. It uses 100cc/115cc 2-stroke TKM engines (BT82) for the Junior and Senior classes respectively. A number of Britains elite racing drivers have competed in the TKM class at some point in their careers.

History[edit]

The TKM karting class was created in 1989 by the British-based kart manufacturer, Tal-Ko. The company owner Alan Turney started the class with the ambition of keeping the large costs of kart racing down while maintaining a level of competitive and equal racing. To maintain the lower prices, only British registered homologated chassis were allowed, along with a Tal-Ko designed engine and hard compound tyres by Maxxis.

The original uptake of the class was successful and with the lower costs involved, the class soared in popularity through the 90s, becoming the UK's most popular karting formula. The TKM Festivals of the late nineties saw over 100 entrants in both senior and junior classes and from this boom the class boasts several current Formula 1 drivers amongst its former racers.[1]

Through second half of the 2000s Tal-Ko introduced a range of new rules for the 2-stroke class in regards to tyres, chassis and engine regulations. With these new rules the class became more relevant and so the numbers of entrants stabilised,[2] despite a mixed set of reactions from people in the sport.[3] It still offers a large field in the Super 1 National Kart Championships and at some club circuits in the UK. Most prevalently the class still finds healthy grids at Kimbolton[4], Shenington Kart Club[5] and Rissington Kart Club[6].

Tal-Ko also introduced a 4-stroke class, which ran on 200cc 4-stroke engines. The series has never been as popular or successful as the 2-stroke TKM class and does not offer a Super One grid.

Classes[edit]

  • Junior TKM: For 11- to 16-year-olds. Runs on 100cc TKM BT82 with a restrictor on the carburettor to give consistent power to weight ratios.
  • TKM Extreme: Also known as Senior TKM, For those aged 16+, this class runs on 115cc TKM BT82 engines with no restrictor.
  • TKM Clubman: For those aged 16+, Aimed for those on a budget. Maximum tread depth of 2.8mm, saving the costs on tries per meeting
  • TKM 4-Stroke Junior: Runs on a 4-stroke 200cc engine with a restrictor on the carburettor to control speeds.
  • TKM 4-Stroke Senior: Runs on a 4-stroke 200cc engine with no restrictor.
Dave Eadon

Racing[edit]

Senior TKM kart race at Shenington Kart Club in 2004

TKM acquired a reputation for close and competitive racing, notably for the extremely large grid entrants. The annual TKM Festival, held at a range of circuits, could once attract over 100 entrants for each class at the event. This is unparalleled for kart racing in the UK during recent history. The class is often cited as the purest form of kart racing owing to the relative simplicity of the racing and the equal playing field.[7]

Although the introduction of the TAG version of the BT82 brought about some fundamental differences between the engine types, the class still offers some of the closest racing in the sport today.

Senior TKM Kart at Rowrah 2017

National Kart Cup (NKC) was started in 2017 as a non-MSA national championship. When the series began, all competitors had to use the Senior TKM engine however other classes have now been introduced. The series was setup to help reduce the costs of owner driver racing by allowing only one set of race slicks for the duration of the championship (six rounds). In 2019, the series will visit Whilton Mill, Clay Pigeon, Llandow, Hooton Park, Rowrah and Fulbeck.

Chassis[edit]

Historically it was decided by the organisers that only TKM homologated, British made, chassis should be used for the class. This was opened up, however, to try to compete with the image of the Rotax Max class. MSA homologated chassis from across Europe have been permitted since 2010.

Currently the most commonly raced Chassis include Tal-Ko, Jade Kart, Intrepid and Italian Giants 'Tony Kart'[8]

Engine[edit]

The class uses a fixed gear, 2-stroke TKM BT82 engine. The Junior engine has a capacity of 100cc and 16.8 BHP (without restrictor). The Senior engine is 115cc and outputs 20 BHP (without restrictor). [9] Tuning of the engines is limited in order to keep costs down. In 2008 Tal-Ko introduced TAG engines featuring an on-board electric start system and centrifugal clutch. To compensate for this additional weight (the heavier engine, starting system and battery combine to add an additional 4.5kg to the weight), the TAG benefits from a larger exhaust and increased compression. [10] The engine can pull up to around 75 mph.

The Current TKM Engine

Tyres[edit]

Maxxis produced tyres have been used in the class since its advent. The class organisers restricts the use to a single 'wet' and 'dry' tyre for the class, with the idea of creating a level performance level and removing the costs of requiring new tyres for each race weekend.

The 'new age' dry weather tyre which is currently used was chosen for its relatively hard compound, promoting durability and removing the need to replace them as often. In 2010 a new tyre was introduced which was designed to improve performance.

Historically a hard compound 'wet' tyre was used but to compete with Rotax Max in performance levels, a softer, stickier tyre was introduced into the formula for the 2005 season.

Notable figures[edit]

TKM has continually been the breeding ground for many current and former notable motorsport figures.

  • 2008, 2014, 2015 and 2017 Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton dabbled in the Junior TKM championship in the mid 90s.


  • Current Formula 1 test driver Gary Paffett won the Junior TKM championship in 1995.
  • Current British GT Driver Scott Malvern also a former British Champion in Formula Ford & Formula Renault raced in Junior TKM 2002-4 & Senior TKM Extreme 2005 when he finished as Super One runner up to Adam Constable
  • 2010 GP2 6th-place finisher Oliver Turvey finished 6th in Junior TKM in 2001.
  • Abbi Pulling became the first female driver to win a British Championship in a TKM category by winning the Junior TKM class in 2017, she repeated this achievement in 2018.

List of British Champions[edit]

FORMULA TKM BRITISH CHAMPIONS

Year Champion
1989 Steve Tulley
1990 John Aldred
1991 Antony McHugh
1992 David Hodkin
1993 Carl Willoughby
1994 Stuart Smith
1995 Stuart Smith
1996 Phillip Charles
1997 Jay Howard
1998 Gary Catt
1999 Adrian Coles
2000 Sam Quinlan
2001 James Gornall
2002 Charlie Bruce-White
2003 Anton Frost
2004 Ben Cruttenden
2005 Adam Constable
2006 Jason Moore
2007 Ryan Cole
2008 Daniel Graham
2009 David Eadon
2010 David Eadon
2011 Joe Porter
2012 Joe Porter
2013 Will van Es
2014 Joe Forsdyke
2015 Matt England
2016 Harry Moore
2017 Stephen Letts
2018 Joe Fowler
2019 TBD

FORMULA JUNIOR TKM BRITISH CHAMPIONS

Year Champion
1991 Nelson Rowe
1992 Jenson Button
1993 Tom Sisley
1994 Carl Breeze
1995 Gary Paffett
1996 Gary Catt
1997 Sam Garford
1998 Mark Litchfield
1999 Ben Clucas
2000 Paul Wilson
2001 James Sutton
2002 Adam Palethorpe
2003 Lee Bell
2004 Tom Davis
2005 Daniel Graham
2006 Marcus Allen
2007 Jake Ball
2008 Gary Henderson-Keirle
2009 Oliver Hodgson
2010 James Peace
2011 Toby Sowery
2012 Jack Partridge
2013 Matthew Davies
2014 Arran Mills
2015 Matthew Graham
2016 Bradley White
2017 Abbi Pulling
2018 Abbi Pulling
2019 TBD

List of British Open Champions[edit]

JUNIOR O PLATE CHAMPIONS

Year Champion
1991 Neil Hose
1992 Jenson Button
1993 Anthony Davidson
1994 Carl Breeze
1995 Judd Coupland
1996 Gary Catt
1997 Chris Lamare
1998 Mark Litchfield
1999 Ben Clucas
2000 Daryl McDonald
2001 Daryl McDonald
2002 Adam Chandler
2003 Lee Bell
2004 Daniel Graham
2005 Daniel Graham
2006 Jake Ball
2007 Jake Ball
2008 Oliver Hodgson
2009 Oliver Hodgson
2010 Ash Robinson
2011 Jake Walker
2012 Jake Walker
2013 Matthew Davis
2014 Alex Forward
2015 Matthew Taylor
2016 Adam Sparrow
2017 Abbi Pulling
2018 Reggie Duhy
2019 TBD

SENIOR O PLATE CHAMPIONS

Year Champion
1991 Carl Willougby
1992 Jim Rainbird
1993 Ryan Hensman
1994 James Workman
1995 Duncan O’Conner
1996 Robbie Kerr
1997 Jay Howard
1998 Terry Langley
1999 Lee Piercey
2000 Mark Litchfield
2001 Chris Lamare
2002 Paul Wilson
2003 Ben Cruttenden
2004 Ryan Cole
2005 Luke Caudle
2006 Alex Jones
2007 Marcus Allen
2008 Daniel Graham
2009 Daniel Butcher-Lord
2010 Phil Smith
2011 Phil Smith
2012 Phil Smith
2013 Joe Forsdyke
2014 James Ogden
2015 Matthew Allnut
2016 Matthew Taylor
2017 Roman Haskett
2018 Joe Stockford
2019 TBD

List of TKM Festival Winners[edit]

TKM FESTIVAL SENIOR WINNERS[11]

Year Winner
1997 Mark Hunt
1998 Kevin Sale
1999 Joss Thompson
2000 Chris Petto
2001 Rob Weldon
2002 Ryan Furner
2003 Alex Bowen
2004 Ryan Cole
2005 Ryan Cole
2006 Ryan Cole
2007 Daniel Graham
2008 David Eadon
2009 Gary Henderson
2010 Joe Porter
2011 Joe Porter
2012 Phil Smith
2013 Toby Sowery
2014 James Ogden
2015 Ryan Cole
2016 Ryan Cole
2017 Bradley White
2018 Dean Hale
2019 TBD

TKM FESTIVAL JUNIOR WINNERS[12]

Year Winner
1997 Chris Petto
1998 Andrew Taylor
1999 Steve Williams
2000 Adam Palethorpe
2001 Shaun Carter
2002 Scott Allen
2003 Lee Bell
2004 Michael Collins
2005 Marcus Allen
2006 Marcus Allen
2007 Jake Bell
2008 Gary Henderson
2009 Ashley Jones
2010 Danny Keirle
2011 Danny Keirle
2012 Jack Partridge
2013 Daniel Baybutt
2014 Dino Lee
2015 Kristian Brierley
2016 Lee Whittingham
2017 Abbi Pulling
2018 Abbi Pulling
2019 TBD

TKM FESTIVAL CLUBMAN CHAMPIONS

Year Champion
2012 Matt Grant
2013 Ciaran McDonald
2014 Tom Longfield
2015 Michael Green
2016 Kyle Morby
2017 Jack Macaulay
2018 Sam Baker
2019 TBD

List of Club Champions[edit]

HUNTS KART CLUB SENIOR TKM CHAMPIONS[13]

Year Champion
2007 Luke Caudle
2008 Adam Jenkins
2009 Michael Cornell
2010 Sam Grogan
2011 Chris Pyke
2012 Michael Cornell
2013 Will Van Es
2014 Owain Rosser
2015 Michael Cornell
2016 Michael Cornell
2017 Michael Cornell
2018 Michael Cornell
2019 TBD

(* Current Championship Leader)

HUNTS KART CLUB JUNIOR TKM CHAMPIONS[14]

Year Champion
2007 Gary Henderson-Keirle
2008 Will Van Es
2009 Richard Woolmer
2010 Jack Partridge
2011 Daniel Burton
2012 Liam Murray
2013 Lewis Outten
2014 Bradley White
2015 Jordan Lee-Chapman
2016 Jordan Lee-Chapman
2017 Spencer Stevenson
2018 Jack Nicholson
2019 TBD

(* Current Championship Leader)

CKRC KART CLUB SENIOR TKM CHAMPIONS[15]

Year Champion
2013 Daniel Pepper
2014 Brendan Speight
2015 Daniel Pepper
2016 Kyle Sproat
2017 Megan Lawson
2018 Brandon Fort
2019 TBD

(* Current Championship Leader)

CKRC KART CLUB JUNIOR TKM CHAMPIONS[16]

Year Champion
2013 Kristian Brierley
2014 Ocean Bach
2015 Cameron Fisher
2016 Ian Sisson
2017 Samuel Wilson
2018 Kieran Pepper
2019 TBD

(* Current Championship Leader)

Non-MSA Championships[edit]

NATIONAL KART CUP CHAMPIONS[17]

Year Champion
2017 Chris Cox
2018 Sam Wilson
2019 TBD

SUPER ONE CHAMPIONS (British Championship prior to 2019)

Year Champion
2019 TBD

References[edit]

External links[edit]