|October 07, 2008 News
|EKN Trackside: Stars of Karting National Finals - JICA & Cadet Preview
The Snap-on Stars of Karting presented by IndyCar Series will complete the 2008 championship season at the National Finals inside the Las Vegas Motor Speedway over the October 10-12 weekend. The event will crown the 10 divisional champions Friday evening before crowning the five national champions Sunday afternoon.
Over the next few days leading up to the event, eKartingNews.com will look at the championship races in each of the five classes along with highlighting those drivers who will be in the fight for the National Finals victory. Today, we look at the Junior divisions, including the Junior Intercontinental A (JICA) and Cadet.
| Phil De La O heads to Vegas leading the JICA championship|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
It has been a stellar 2008 season for Phil De La O. The Advanced Karting/Tony Kart driver leads the Junior Intercontinental A (JICA) national championship thanks to a near perfect record in the Western Division. De La O earned four wins and a runner-up finish on the West to score 490 points, just 10 shy of a perfect score. If 2007 proves anything, is that you can not count out anyone heading to the finale which puts the pressure on De La O to remain up front in the final weekend.
Chasing De La O will include ’07 championship contenders Brendan Phinny and Gustavo Menezes. Phinny (Team Top Kart USA) sits 50 points back of De La O with a string of podium finishes minus a win while Menezes had one victory and top-fives to his credit to be 35 points behind Phinny. Menezes (Tony Kart USA) led the championship last season heading into the finale but a rough outing cost the Californian the national crown. A technical disqualification would take Phinny out of the title chase after the opening final. Both are looking for better performances in Vegas with some help to cut into De La O’s advantage.
Eastern Division champion Tatiana Calderon sits fourth overall heading to the finale. The Tony Kart USA driver used consistency to become the first ever female championship driver in Stars of Karting history. Calderon is more than of earning a victory at the National Finals, running in the top-five in the 2007 event. Canadian Remo Ruscitti heads to the finale in fifth position. After a solid opening East event, Ruscitti (Italian Motors/Italkart) was unable to match the results but will look to do so this weekend.
Defending champion Jarvis Gennari has not had the championship year he had planned but knew going into the year it was going to be challenging. Moving over to SSC East aboard a CRG and the growth spurt the 15 year old went through put extra challenges in front of him. He along with Shawano winner Taylor Miinch (Team Top Kart USA) and Miles Maroney (Cameron Motorsports/CRG) are still mathematically in the hunt.
Others to watch to challenge for victories on the weekend but out of the championship chase include Spencer Pigot (Screaming Talent/Gillard), Tristan DeGrand (J3 Competition/Kosmic), Brett Felkins (Leading Edge Motorsports/Intrepid), and Timmy Bachman (Leading Edge Motorsports/Intrepid).
JICA UNOFFICIAL Points Standings
JICA Provisional Entry List
|2||Gustavo Menezes||Tony Kart USA||Tony Kart||Parilla|
|4||Miles Maroney||Cameron Motorsports||CRG||Parilla|
|5||Spencer Pigot||Screaming Talent||Gillard||Parilla|
|305||Tommy Beshro||PSL Karting||CRG||Parilla|
|314||Kelsey Nielsson||Tony Kart USA||Tony Kart||Parilla|
|318||Chad Grunow||Cameron Motorsports||CRG||Parilla|
|320||Taylor Miinch||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart||Parilla|
|323||Jeffrey May||Cameron Motorsports||CRG||Parilla|
|326||Tyler Thomas||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart||Parilla|
|327||Angel Caban||J3 Competition||Kosmic||Parilla|
|328||Tristan DeGrand||J3 Competition||Kosmic||Parilla|
|335||Brett Felkins||Leading Edge Motorsports||Intrepid||Parilla|
|341||Sage Karam||MRP-Birel America||Birel||Parilla|
|350||Tatiana Calderon||Tony Kart USA||Tony Kart||Parilla|
|353||CJ Cronis||San Yves Motorsports||Maranello||Parilla|
|354||Mason Marotta||Leading Edge Motorsports||Intrepid||Parilla|
|366||Brendan Phinny||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart||Parilla|
|369||Bobby Runyan||Raging Bull Motorsports||Margay||Parilla|
|377||Phil DeLaO||Advanced Karting||Tony Kart||Parilla|
|391||Timmy Bachman||Leading Edge Motorsports||Intrepid||Parilla|
|394||Shawn Sharkey||H&S Motorsports||Merlin||Parilla|
|395||Remo Ruscitti||Italian Motors||Italkart||Parilla|
|396||Alesasndra Madrigal||J3 Competition||Kosmic||Parilla|
| A perfect score for Trent Hindman has him leading Cadet into the finale|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
Trent Hindman has made his first season competing in the Stars of Karting series one to remember. Hindman (Merlin) has run at the front of the Cadet field from the first event in Ocala through now, winning seven of ten Finals - both in the wet and in the dry - and heads into the finale with a 500 perfect score. His season long rival has been Andrew Murray. Challenging him at nearly every event, Murray (Birel) has found the podium but not the taste of victory yet in 2008. Murray will need a couple victories and some help to have a shot at the title. Gresham Wagner (Birel), Santino Ferrucci (Top Kart), and Luis Tyrrell (Top Kart) are the only drivers to win aside from Hindman, and they enter the finale third, fifth, and sixth in the championship chase. Mason Chelootz (Top Kart) and Logan Bearden (Birel) - both looking for their first Stars win - sit fourth and seventh, still in the hunt mathematically.
Mixed into the finale will be drivers from the BRDC Stars of Tomorrow program from England. The top three drivers from the Shawano event competed at the BRDC Stars of Tomorrow event on September 12-14, including Gresham Wagner, Logan Bearden, and Luis Tyrell. Returning the favor, James Armitage, Charlie Robertson, and Brett Wykes will travel to Vegas from England to compete with Team Top Kart USA, Franklin Motorsports/Merlin USA, and Champion Racing/Intrepid USA respectively.
Cadet UNOFFICIAL Point Standings
Cadet Provisional Entry List
|0||Mason Chelootz||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|2||Jake Craig||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|5||Gresham Wagner||MRP-Birel Motorsports||Birel|
|6||Logan Bearden||MRP-Birel Motorsports||Birel|
|7||Austin Self||MRP-Birel Motorsports||Birel|
|19||Garett Grist||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|22||Broc Yocom||Leading Edge Motorsports||Intrepid|
|25||Riley Reyes||SSC Racing||CRG|
|32||James Armitage||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|33||Charlie Robertson||Franklin Motorsports/Merlin USA||Merlin|
|34||Brett Wykes||Champion Racing/Intrepid USA||Intrepid|
|43||Davey Manthei||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|58||Carter Williams||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|64||Trent Hindman||H&S Motorsports||Merlin|
|66||Zane Smith||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|74||Luis Tyrrell||Team Top Kart USA||Top Kart|
|97||Mitchell Griffin||Tony Kart USA||Tony Kart|
eKartingNews.com will be providing ‘Trackside Live’ coverage throughout the week. Friday will begin the on-track portion with full rundown of the quick drivers during the day along with photos. Saturday and Sunday will continue with daily reports, forum updates, and full results. To watch updates, visit the Official Discussion Thread in the forums.