|November 09, 2011 News
|EKN Exclusive: SKUSA SuperNationals XV Preview Series - S4/G1
On the week of November 16-20, Superkarts! USA will host the 15th annual SKUSA SuperNationals in the parking lot of the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Since 1997, the event has produced a bit of history for the sport, with the 2011 edition no different. A record-breaking number of entries, including over 500 drivers from across the world, will all be vying to become one of the 11 winners at this year’s event. eKartingNews.com - in conjunction with it’s exclusive Trackside Live coverage - has slated the remaining days leading up to the event for an in-depth look at the entry list and the major contenders in each of the 11 categories.
Today, S4 Master Stock Moto and G1 take the spotlight of the preview series, followed by the remaining groups: S2 Semi-Pro Stock Moto, TaG Senior, KF2, KZ2 and S1 Pro Stock Moto.
For previous class previews and complete coverage throughout the event, visit the EKN Event Page.
S4 Master Stock Moto
| Jimmy McNeil enters Vegas as defending winner and Pro Tour point leader in the S4 division|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
In 2006, the Stock Moto category at the SuperNationals expanded to two divisions - S3 and S4. The latter was reserved as the ‘heavy’ category, open to all ages. It has since evolved into a 30 years of age and older class, and it has taken off. The category has grown into what is now considered the top-level Master shifter class in the country. In the previous five editions of the SKUSA SuperNationals, the class has seen just three different winners. SoCal’s Jeff Littrell went back-to-back in ’06 and ’07, winning for a third time in 2009. Littrell will not be in attendance in Vegas this season to take a shot at a record-tying fourth title, leaving just the other two former winners - Chris Jennings and defending champ Jimmy McNeil - on the roster for this year’s event.
2010 champion McNeil has been the driver to beat in S4 since scoring the victory one year ago. The CRG pilot has been nearly perfect in SKUSA Pro Tour and ProKart Challenge action. Four feature wins in both programs put him as the leading favorite by the odds-makers, both for the victory and to clinch the Pro Tour title. Jennings returns to the category for the first time since winning in 2008, as he raced S3 in ’09 and was absent all together in 2010. The Texan is currently 21st in the EKN Stock Moto Driver Rankings, competing in the S2 class at the regional level. The 3G Kart Racing/Birel driver comes into Vegas having finished eighth at the Rock Island GP King of the Streets.
On the Pro Tour and at PKC events, McNeil’s top challengers have been his father-in-law Robert Marks and veteran Nick Firestone. Marks (CRG) is the only driver to beat McNeil on the season, having earned two PKC South victories on the year. He was runner-up in both main events at the Grand Junction Pro Tour event and is making his first S4 SuperNationals start, competing in G1 last year. Firestone has two podium finishes on the Pro Tour behind McNeil, as the Zanardi America driver has shown the speed necessary to hang with the defending race winner, sitting second in the point standings. Making his first S4 start, the Arizonian finished sixth one year ago in the competitive G1 division.
| 2009 King of the Streets winner Jordon Musser will make his first S4 start at the SuperNationals|
(Photo: Joe Brittin)
Other drivers who have showed well on the Pro Tour this year include Roy Montgomery (CRG) and Lance Lane (DR Kart). Montgomery is another strong G1 transfer who has made the move to Stock Moto and been immediately quick. Running with Kimball Williams Racing, Montgomery scored a third and fourth as his best two finishes thus far in Pro Tour action, and he has a good chance to stand on the podium in Vegas to secure the #3 plate for 2012. Aside from Marks, Lane will be chasing him for the third position in the standings. A longtime standout in road racing, Lane’s return to the sprint track and debut on the Pro Tour with DRT Racing and the DR Kart has been successful. A podium in Tucson and top-five in Grand Junction put him on the contenders list for SuperNats glory.
Four drivers who we have not seen much of in 2011 are returning, all finishing in the top-10 one year ago. 2010 runner-up Eddie Olpin (Kosmic) will be back in action after preparing all season long at the Utah Karting Championship program at Miller Motorsports Park. Third-place finisher Rob Logan (CRG) ran a limited schedule in 2011, a top-five runner at the SpringNationals and podium finisher at his lone PKC South start. Texan Mike Jones (Sodi) has been a top challenger over the past three seasons. Jones was second in 2008, posted a DNF in ’09 despite being the fastest driver on the track, and was fourth one year ago. He has been focused on the recently opened Dallas Karting Complex circuit which he co-owns, but now Jones is ready to jump back in seat without missing a beat to contend this year once again. Jim Inglebright (GP) has finishes of eighth and 11th over the past few seasons despite a limited schedule, and come Vegas, he’s always inching up the order towards the top.
Some interesting names make up the ‘rookie’ roster for the category. Among them is 30-year old Jordon Musser (Birel), who is now eligible for S4. A multi-time Rotax National Champion and 2009 Rock Island King of the Streets winner, Musser has spent the last few seasons building a race car team. Now at the minimum age, the 3G Kart Racing pilot moves to S4 after placing 16th in S1 Pro Stock Moto one year ago. Also moving from S1, but well above the minimum age limit, is SuperNats regular Bonnier Moulton. The Utah driver has a successful resume in the G1 category, scoring a victory in 2004. After racing the young guns in S3 and S1, Moulton will join his fellow MSquared Karting S4 teammates on a full assault after this year’s field.
One of the most-recent G1 transplants to the S4 class is NorCal’s Jim Kidd. A top-10 finisher in G1 in Vegas two years running, Kidd (Italkart) comes to the SuperNationals as the PKC North regional champion. PP Mastro (CRG) is another driver who has been competitive in SuperNats, but has yet to score a victory thus far. The multi-time PKC South G1 champion will hope the move to S4 will bring him that elusive victory. Making his SuperNationals debut, reigning Rotax Master Grand Nationals champion Brent Harper (Swiss Hutless) will throw his name in the hat for 2011. Unable to enter the TaG Masters division due to the class hitting its entry limit, Harper and CMC Karting are strapping on a Stock Moto. No stranger to shifter karts, Harper has a long list of victories on the road racing circuits running a six-speed machine.
When the action starts on November 16, a long list of contenders will begin their quest for SuperNationals fame and become one of 11 drivers to claim victory at the 15th edition of the event.
Provisional 2011 SKUSA SuperNationals S4 Master Stock Moto Entry List
|2t||Coy Dayton||Tony Kart Texas||Tony Kart||TX||USA|
|4||Mike Jones||The Kart Shop||SodiKart||TX||USA|
|7||Jose Barba||Sindikato Performance||CRG||MEX|
|8m||Carlos Ferdez||Ferdez Racing||Energy||MEX|
|11||Adrian Aguilera||Estral Logistics Racing Team||Intrepid||MEX|
|12c||Greg Jewett||Zanardi America||Zanardi||AZ||USA|
|14||Eddie Olpin||Powers Karting||Kosmic||UT||USA|
|16||Jordon Musser||3G Kart Racing||Birel||TX||USA|
|19b||Ken Hromada||Innovative Karting||Intrepid||AZ||USA|
|21x||Ken Schilling||Extreme Karting / GP West||GP||CA||USA|
|023||Todd Edgington||MSquared Karting||Tony Kart||UT||USA|
|23c||Vatche Tatikian||Phil Giebler Racing||FA Kart||CA||ARM|
|27c||PP Mastro||Hi-Rev Engineering||CRG||CA||USA|
|26||Vicki Brian||Tony Kart||FL||USA|
|33x||Rob Logan||Kimball Williams Racing||CRG||CA||USA|
|042||Ryan Pool||MSquared Karting||Tony Kart||UT||USA|
|42f||Scott Rister||Tony Kart Texas||Tony Kart||FL||USA|
|045||RJ Edgington||MSquared Karting||Tony Kart||UT||USA|
|46b||Christiaan Bouhuys||PureKarting.com||Tony Kart||PA||USA|
|46m||Sergio Aguilera||Estral Logistics Racing Team||Intrepid||MEX|
|49u||Bonnier Moulton||MSquared Karting||Tony Kart||UT||USA|
|55c||Doug Hayashi||Pulp Racing||Tony Kart||CA||USA|
|55x||Roy Montgomery||Kimball Williams Racing||CRG||CA||USA|
|61x||Chris Fosso||Innovative Karting||Intrepid||AZ||USA|
|65j||Lance Lane||DRT Racing||DR Kart||IL||USA|
|66c||Nick Firestone||Zanardi America||Zanardi||AZ||USA|
|66x||Todd Scholta||Team Visalia||CRG||CA||USA|
|72||Gary Delcoure||Acceleration Karting||CRG||NV||USA|
|74u||Brian Frank||Northwest Race Karts||AMV||MT||USA|
|75z||Steve Perdue||Northwest Race Karts||AMV||WA||USA|
|80y||Brad Shaffer||STA Racing||GP||CA||USA|
|88||Ricardo Peralta||J3 Competition||Kosmic||MEX|
|90g||Brian Fisher||DRT Racing||DR Kart||TN||USA|
|94z||Brandon Brock||BnS Racing||CRG||WA||USA|
|98y||Jim Kidd||Cameron Karting||Italkart||CA||USA|
|100m||Adolfo Anguiano||Ferdez Racing||Intrepid||MEX|
|101x||Jimmy McNeil||Team Visalia||CRG||CA||USA|
|102x||Darrell Tunnell||Team Visalia||CRG||CA||USA|
|103x||Robert Marks||Team Visalia||CRG||CA||USA|
|110||Cuahutemoc Garcia||Sindikato Performance||CRG||MEX|
|111y||Jim Inglebright||STA Racing||GP||CA||USA|
|133||Guillermo Ruede||Sindikato Performance||CRG||MEX|
|172||Troy Butts||TB Electric||CRG||CA||USA|
|175||Chris Jennings||3G Kart Racing||Birel||TX||USA|
|179c||John Chott||Extreme Karting||CRG||CA||USA|
|555||Bruce McKean||Shark Shifter||Tony Kart||WA||USA|
|612||Carlo Rinaldi||Intrepid North America||Intrepid||ONT||VEN|
|618||Noel Bernales||Acceleration Karting||Birel||NV||USA|
|613t||Brent Harper||CMC Karting||Swiss Hutless||TX||USA|
| Italian Fabrizio Nannini will defend his G1 title|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
The G1 division has a long and memorable history at the SKUSA SuperNationals. Dating back to 2000 when the class was introduced, the category has evolved but still holds that one constant - guys who just love to race shifter karts. That same mantra continues heading to Vegas for the 2011 edition of the SuperNats. Created as a sportsman’s class for drivers over the age of 35, the category has now become another competitive division where one error will keep you off the podium. Another transition has been the influx of international competitors into the category, which make up over half the field.
This is exemplified when looking at the last two winners - Antonio Dettori and Fabrizio Nannini - both hailing from Italy. Dettori will be absent from this year’s event, but Nannini is returning to defend his crown. Both drove for the Energy Corse operation last year and should Nannini defend his crown, will give the brand its third straight victory in the category. The leading country in the category, however, is Brazil with 10 drivers. Leading this charge will be Tony Kart America’s Eduardo Martins. The 2001 winner now calls Florida home and is a favorite every year that he returns to the SuperNationals. A fifth place finish last year shows that he still has what it takes and he would like nothing more than to score a second victory 10 years after his first.
Last year’s runner-up Emilio Padron (CRG) returns with hopes at scoring his first SuperNationals victory. Driving out of the PSL Karting tent, the Brazilian - who was second in 2008 as well - is sure to be among the drivers atop the time sheets out of the gate. With a number of the other international drivers making their debut start in Vegas, it is uncertain just who will step up on the big stage that is the SKUSA SuperNationals.
Looking at the American contingent, while lower in numbers than in previous years, the US has a strong roster that will be able to battle for victory. Defending S4 SuperNats champion Jimmy McNeil (CRG) will be pulling the double duty, running both Master shifter classes in the same block schedule. The last time McNeil ran the G1 category was in 2008, where he finished seventh. Howie Idelson (Sodi) is a long-time SuperNats competitor with favorable results. His best finish recently was in 2008 when he placed fourth. Kurt Mathewson (Birel) is another G1 regular, still looking for that solid finish in Vegas. A best finish of 15th in the last three years, the Indiana driver is hoping the move to Motorama Kart Parts (MKP) is the trigger to put him on the podium. Aluminos driver Peter Workum (GP) is a driver of all trades. Competing in TaG Master and S4, he will make his first SuperNats start in G1 with a solid season preparing for the task.
Despite the lower numbers compared to year’s past, the action in G1 will still be exciting to watch trackside and see the drama unfold to witness just who will claim the checkered flag on SuperSunday.
Provisional 2011 SKUSA SuperNationals G1 Entry List
|2||Eduardo Martins||Tony Kart America||Tony Kart||ICC-Vortex||FL||BRA|
|4||Carlos Lopes||Action Kart Racing||CKR||ICC-Debei||NJ||PRT|
|5||Craig Bennett||Evolution Karting||Birel||ICC-TM||MI||USA|
|7||Emilio Padron||PSL Karting||CRG||ICC-Maxter||BRA|
|8||Guilherme Jacob||PSL Karting||CRG||ICC-Maxter||BRA|
|09||Antonio Canedo||PSL Karting||CRG||ICC-Maxter||BRA|
|13||Will Hunholz||Velasco Racing||GP||Moto||WA||USA|
|14||Fabrizio Nannini||Energy Corse||Energy||ICC-Vortex||ITA|
|21r||Chris Perreault||Checkered Flag Racing||Vemme||ICC-TM||BC||CAN|
|22k||Peter Workum||Aluminos||GP||ICC-Motori 7||AZ||USA|
|25j||Kurt Mathewson||Motorama Kart Parts (MKP)||Birel||ICC-Maxter||IN||USA|
|33||Roberto Calca Jr.||Aluminos||GP||ICC||BRA|
|47||Pedro Serrano||PSL Karting||CRG||ICC-Maxter||BRA|
|57a||Jorge Borelli||Phil Giebler Racing||FA Kart||ICC-Vortex||BRA|
|61||Petr Ulbert||Praga North America||Praga||ICC-TM||ONT||CZE|
|63||David Levy||Homestead Karting||CRG||ICC-TM||FL||USA|
|65||Craig Willis||J3 Competition||Kosmic||ICC||AUS|
|81||Luis Sousa||PSL Karting||CRG||ICC-Maxter||BRA|
|87||Mike McGowan||Italian Motors||Italkart||ICC-TM||BC||CAN|
|88y||Kassy Loving||Cameron Karting||Italkart||ICC-TM||CA||USA|
|101x||Jimmy McNeil||Team Visalia||CRG||ICC-Maxter||CA||USA|
|181||Petr Ptacek||Praga North America||Praga||ICC-TM||ONT||CZE|
|327f||Christian Bartz||Orlando Kart Center||Tony Kart||ICC||FL||BRA|
|911||Tim Wyatt||UFO Motorsport||CRG||ICC-Maxter||CA||USA|