|September 14, 2009 News
|eKartingNews.com Driver of the Month - Ryan Phillips - August 2009
| Ryan Phillips scored a victory at the WKA Manufacturer's Cup Series the weekend after earning three at the WKA Gold Cup event - both at New Castle Motorsports Park|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
In a continued effort to highlight the many outstanding performances by drivers around the country, eKartingNews.com is proud to introduce the ‘Driver of the Month’ program. Each month, the staff at EKN will determine the one driver who stood out above the rest and give the viewers a chance to know exactly what they accomplished and who they are.
There are not too many drivers that can make the adjustment well from one power plant to another; however, the karting community is seeing that more and more between the WKA Gold Cup and Manufacturer’s Cup Series. The newest driver to score wins in both programs this season is Ryan Phillips. The driver for the American-made Bandit chassis - which only made its Man. Cup debut in 2007 - is battling for championship in both programs and helped put himself near the top of the chase with victories at both rounds in August.
Phillips’ back to back weekend schedule at the New Castle Motorsports Park facility began with the WKA Bully Clutches Gold Cup program for the Coyote Motorsports Nationals on August 21-23. The event began with the Briggs Lite division where Phillips qualified third in the class. After running a solid third in the Prefinal, the feature began Phillips spinning around in the opening corner. Dropping Phillips to the back, he was up to sixth by the time they crossed the stripe for the first time. Putting his head down, Ryan was up to first by lap seven, stretching out to a near five-second margin of victory over championship leader Brett Farmer.
His second victory of the day came over another championship leader, this time Gary Lawson in the Briggs Heavy category. Phillips edged out Lawson in qualifying for the pole position but Lawson got the better end in the Prefinal. Lawson led the first lap of the feature and that would be it as Phillips assumed the point to lead the remaining nine laps for the 3.877-second victory. The two went head to head again later in the day in the World Formula Medium division. Lawson showed the way the first three laps before Farmer assumed the point, edging out for his third victory of the day by a scant 0.105-second. Phillips completed the remainder of the weekend with a seventh in the Briggs Medium category, which boasted 23 entries, and a third in the World Formula Heavy feature.
Heading into the program’s final race in October at the BeaveRun Motorsports Complex, Phillips sits second in four class standings (Briggs Lite, Briggs Heavy, World Formula Medium, World Formula Heavy).
The following weekend, Phillips traded in his Briggs engines for Yamahas to compete at the WKA Bridgestone Manufacturer’s Cup Series Show Hauler Truck Nationals. Day one would see Phillips look to defend his win from the previous round at Road America in the Yamaha SuperCan Heavy division. After placing fourth in qualifying, Phillips moved up to second in the Prefinal. A great race ensued for the Final and the win was decided in the final corners. Phillips exited the corner leading to the final straight in the third spot but was able to get a clean exited to sling shot bye the front two with a tire in the grass. Getting through the final corner, Phillips claimed the victory.
The following day in the Lite division, Phillips kick-started the day with the second fastest lap in the short qualifying session on a slick track. Engaged in a battle with the same players from the day before, Phillips was dropped to fourth in the final corner of the Prefinal. Back at it again in the Final, Phillips lost the lead group near the halfway mark but was able to draft back to the pack and win the battle for third at the line.
With one less race to his credit, Phillips sits fifth in both class standings heading into the series finale at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in November.
| Ryan Phillips - EKN Driver of the Month - August 2009|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
August 2009 EKN Driver of the Month - Ryan Phillips
Date of Birth: 10/25/90
Hometown: Newark, Ohio
Parents: Stacy Stack, Michael Stack and Kenny Phillips
Siblings: Chloe and Kylee
Education: 2009 graduate of Lakewood High School, currently attending ‘The’ Ohio State University, pursuing a degree in accounting
Job: Aquatics Supervisor at Coco Key Water Resort
Engine/Engine Builder: Adkins Yamaha/Baker Animal
Sponsors: Weiser Motorsports, G-Man Kartworks, Adkins Speed Center and Bandit Racing Chassis
Series You Compete In: WKA Gold Cup and Manufacturer’s Cup
Years Karting: 10
How did you get started in karting? Family
What has been the high point in your racing career? Winning multiple national championships
What are your goals in racing? To someday race for a living
In a few words, how would you describe your driving style? Smooth and strategic
Funniest moment at the race track? Coming into the pits at Lowes Motor Speedway with no brakes and running my grandpa over
Favorite Track: BeaveRun Motorsports Complex
Favorite form of professional motorsports: ALMS
Favorite karting driver: Jason Weiser
Favorite professional driver: Sam Hornish Jr.
Favorite website: ekartingnews.com
Favorite movie: Inside Man
Favorite actor/actress: Will Smith
Favorite music/group: Lil Wayne
Favorite vacation/activity spot: Outer banks, North Carolina
Favorite food: Mexican
The Real Deal
What do you do when not at the track? Working out and attending school
What are your goals outside of karting? To race professionally or become a Certified Public Accountant
What type of street car do you drive? Ford Focus
What type of street car would you like to drive? Honda S2000
What are your pet peeves or things that irritate you? Slow drivers
What do you think could be done to improve the sport of karting? Integrate a few of the series
What are your favorite aspects about the sport of karting? The fact that it’s open wheel but still allows for close wheel to wheel racing
August Driver of the Month - Honorable Mention:
- Dakota Bell: WKA Gold Cup (New Castle) - 3 Junior division wins
- Gustavo Menezes: Championship Karting International (CalSpeed) / ProKart Challenge South (CalSpeed) - 2 wins / 2 wins
- Nick Neri: WKA Manufacturer’s Cup (New Castle) - 1 win, four top-three finishes