Race ROUNDUP: KARTING CHALLENGE RD 2
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (February 25, 2019) - Following up a busy two months of national-level action, the Karting Challenge club-series was back in full force for the second round of the 2019 season. A swap in track direction saw some new faces near the front of the grids, while winners from Round 1 looked to repeat their success.
rolland against ragusa in tag senior
A smaller grid than Round 1 was on the table for the TaG Senior division, but a great battle for the win was put on regardless. Franco Ragusa struck first with the pole award in qualifying, but a mechanical failure on the outlap of the Pre Final surrendered the top spot to Yannick Rolland. Ragusa gave Rolland everything he had to try and pressure the Tony Kart driver into a mistake, but Yannick was able to hold on for the victory.
a rejuvenated iame x30 junior field
Even though the national events have already come and gone here in Homestead, some top-level talent was found in the IAME X30 Junior division. Local driver Leonardo Hassan scored his first career pole in qualifying, but it was Emmo Fittipaldi who took command of the class by winning the Pre Final. Fittipaldi went on to dominate the main event as well, scoring his first win on the season. Lucas Rodriguez and Mateo Rubio-Luengo dueled behind Fittipaldi for much of the Final. A spectacular last lap move promoted Rodriguez to the second spot in the end with Rubio-Luengo settling for third.
an all-out grudge match in iame mini swift
Just as they ended 2018, Miguel Costa, Jakub Kolar, and Max Garcia found themselves at the pointy end of the field for Round 2. Kolar took fast time in qualifying, although it was Miguel Costa who would go on to a near 2.5-second margin of victory over the pair in the Pre Final.
The Final was a much different story. All 3 drivers were nose-to-tail for the entire session, trading positions nearly every corner. With two laps to go, Kolar began defending viciously from both Garcia and Costa. After fending one last charge by Garcia entering the back hairpin, the "Kid from Key West" was able to take his second consecutive win. Garcia remained close by the finish, with Costa holding bay in third just half a second back.
a big time shuffle in lo206 junior
After coming into Round 2 on a wave of good vibes thanks to his Round 1 win, Ashton Chilton saw nothing but bad luck. A decent 4th place run in qualifying put the defending champion in a spot to fight for the Pre Final, but motor issues plagued the TB Kart driver as he fell to the tail end of the field. He then failed to start the Main Event after suffering a broken arm in the IAME X30 Junior Pre Final, damaging his X30 Junior chassis in the process.
With Chilton out of the running, it was Tampa-based driver Granger Perra who picked up the reigns. He qualified on pole by more than four tenths of a second over last year's runner-up Alejandro Ramirez. While Ramirez was able to get the better of Perra in the Pre Final, a last-lap pass for the win in the Main Event secured Perra's first LO206 Junior victory in the Karting Challenge. Ramirez would hold for second with Vance Devine finishing third.
double-duty doubles up in iame ka100 junior
While the higher speeds may have seemed more challenging to most, Granger Perra was unphased and untouched in the IAME KA100 Junior division on Sunday. Perra completed a perfect run in the class with the fast time award in qualifying, leading every lap to win the Pre Final, and an additional flag-to-flag victory in the Final. Jimmie Lockhart and EJ Tamayo swapped the second spot a handful of times early in the final, but ultimately it was Lockhart who ended as the runner-up finisher with Tamayo settling for the final step of the podium.
one step higher for dan breitenstein
With Todd Ulmen absent from action in Round 2, Dan Breitenstein was left all alone out in front of the LO206 Heavy field. After qualifying with a two and a half tenth cushion back, he went on to a three-second gap over second place in the Pre Final and a six-second margin of victory in the Final. Dario Echeverry gave it everything he had but the RYSA Racing driver was simply unable to challenge Breitenstein all day, marring him to a second place finish. Aaron Parkinson took advantage of a few drivers in the lead group dropping out midway through the Final to take his first podium on the year.
'lil wheldon on top in iame micro swift
Oliver Wheldon was unstoppable in IAME Micro Swift in the 2nd Round of the season, sweeping every single on-track session of the day -- including practice. He ended his performance with a 17+ second advantage over second place finisher Matteo Franco-Ruggerio. Daniel Telle rounded off the podium in third.
2 and 0 in iame bambino
Alessandro Truchot remained perfect in the IAME Bambino division this past weekend, qualifying on pole and winning the Final by more than twelve seconds over Benja Fernandez. Fernandez would take another consecutive podium run with Maxwell Macha finishing third.
isambard on top again shifter
Had he just made a start in the same amount of races as last year's champion Vincent Kupinski, Alan Isambard would have won the title in the Shifter division. He was back to his winning ways again in Round 2, dominating qualifying with more than a half second advantage on the field. He went perfect in the Pre Final and Final by leading every lap to win each session, with Daniel Dibos playing second fiddle. Dibos ended his split amongst two minors with Isambard on the top step of the box and Sebastian Hazbun finishing third.
LO206 SENIOr: RISE OF THE ROOKIE
After sitting on the sidelines for Round 1, Jack Copeland returned to action in the LO206 Senior class for Round 2. He made his presence well-known by scoring the pole in qualifying and winning the Pre Final, going nearly unchallenged for its entirety. After post-race tech cleared, Braian Garcia was promoted from a third place run in the Pre Final to start on the outside of Copeland in the Main Event, his best starting position to date. Unfortunately, Copeland and Garcia made contact in Turn 1, ending Garcia's day early and sending Copeland to the rear of the field.
This opened the door for Copeland's rookie teammate in Frankie Barroso to take control of the Final. The youngster drove a flawless race, going unchallenged to score his first Senior victory in only his second ever start. Miguel Rivera followed up his win in Round 1 with a runner-up finish in Round 2 to maintain control of the championship standings, and Franco Cipullo continued his podium streak with a third place finish.
Up next is Round 3 of the Karting Challenge presented by MG Tires on Sunday, March 31st.
For more information on the Karting Challenge club series, CLICK HERE>>