Courtesy of Sharon Cox
Nina Pothof achieved massive success at 2019 FIA Motorsport Games winning Karting Slalom category with fellow country-driver Bastiaan van Loenen representing Netherlands.
At just 16 years of age, Nina showed true grit, strength of character and will power to overcome trying weather conditions which reduced her Qualifying session to only one, while remaining unfazed at stiff competition amongst a field of 58 drivers from 29 Nations all vying for the Karting Slalom Gold Cup.
Nina: ‘Racing in the ‘Olympics of Motorsport ‘ was a great experience. I was very proud to represent the Netherlands together with Bastiaan van Loenen’.
‘And of course it was the first time the Motorsport Games was held. The Go-Karts were slightly different than the Karts I used to drive because these ones were electric’.
‘Qualifying sessions already started on Friday. It was dry all day until me and the girl from Thailand had to drive. It started to rain very hard. Afther our session, they stopped the qualifying sessions because of the rain. The drivers after us got the opportunity to qualify on Saturday morning. Unfortunately we were not allowed to drive again. However it did not stop us from getting in the top 10’.
With quarter-finals and semi-finals deciding final Nations to compete for Gold, Silver and Bronze, Nina and Bastiaan lined up to compete against Belgium Team for top honours on Sunday. Navigating the cone-marked Vallelunga circuit, Netherlands young, up-coming talented drivers eclipsed the neighbouring country pair with a winning margin of 3.295 seconds.
Nina: ‘My main goal was to win and to be on the podium with a golden medal. During the weekend I didn’t feel any pressure at all’.
Having gained successful place as finalist in FIA Girls in Karting Challenge earlier this year, Nina has notched valuable experiences to help development of track skills, mental toughness and management of racing under pressure.
Nina: ‘During the Girls on Track program we didn’t do any karting slalom. But we drove four intensive days on tracks in The Netherlands & Belgium. We also did some simulator training. Besides that, we also got media training which helped us on how to give interviews etc’.
Most certainly, standing top of podium, clutching Gold Medal with fellow-country driver representing Netherlands holds special place in Nina’s career, all the while reminding everyone the achievement is only tip of iceberg on what’s to come.
Nina: ‘Me and Bastiaan are very proud to respresent the Netherlands and we are very happy to win gold at the first Motorsport Games in Rome. My goal is to participate in the W-series. And during 2020, I’ll try to get as much experience as possible in a single seater’.