|eKartingNews.com Driver Rankings – August 27, 2012 – Stock Moto
As the month draws to a close, eKartingNews.com takes the next two days to review the standings of the 2012 EKN Driver Rankings. Today, Stock Moto is under the microscope with not much action taking place. Only a handful of races over the last four weeks took place, but plenty is on the schedule in the coming weekends. The Rock Island Grand Prix King of the Streets, featuring a number of the top Stock Moto drivers from the central to eastern part of the country converging on the city streets of Rock Island, Illinois, while drivers along the west coast set their sights on the growing Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix in Lancaster, California. The one thing that stands out among the current top-10 in the standings, the age of the drivers is very young (average 21) and should lead to some competitive racing in the years to come.
One of the eldest drivers at the top of the Stock Moto rankings is Fritz Leesmann (CRG). A former #1 in the old ICC standings, Leesmann has matured more and more as a driver even after winning the inaugural SKUSA Pro Tour championship in 2010. Poised for a second title in three years, the PSL Karting driver will have to fend off another young veteran. Joey Wimsett (CRG) holds second in the driver standings, as well as the Pro Tour title chase. With two wins in four races under his belt as a rookie to the S1 class this year, Wimsett’s years of racing many different engine formulas and driver skill-set is among the best, proving it with a championship run at the recent Rotax Grand Nationals, claiming the DD2 title under the Rolison Performance Group tent.
The youngest in the mix at the top is Texan Jake French (Birel). At 14 years old, he made the transition to the S2 class and now at 16 is competing at the top level of Stock Moto competition. The best performance to date by the 3G Kart Racing pilot was a third place run at the Rock Island Grand Prix last season, looking to better that result this weekend. Fourth is former number one driver Nicky Freytag (FA Kart). The Phil Giebler Racing driver is progressing along well in his S1 rookie season as well, winning at the California ProKart Challenge back in May, along with two fourth place finishes on the Pro Tour thus far. Capping off the top five is Minnesota’s Lukas Johnson (GP). Showing well last season to earn the #3 SKUSA plate in his rookie season, Johnson has had to overcome some issues this season, including a chassis change for the SummerNationals.
2011 SKUSA Pro Tour S2 champion Kyle Hathcox (CRG) is hitting the growing pains of moving up to the competitive S1 division. No doubt his never-quit attitude will pay off, maybe even in Vegas for the CRG-USA pilot. Another driver who never quits is Josh Lane (DR Kart), number seven in the standings. The DRT Racing driver will battle both major street races in the coming weeks, which could help him move up the order. Cory Milne (GP) is the third youngest of the bunch, just under 20 years old. The 2011 SummerNationals S2 double winner is learning each and every weekend under the Aluminos tent. Jimmy McNeil (CRG), the oldest of the top-10 drivers, has his sights on scoring the S1 title in the California ProKart Challenge, which wraps up at the Streets of Lancaster GP. Some rough luck on the Pro Tour has hampered is results, but there is no question he’s among the best in preparing for the big events. Rounding out the top-10 is MSquared Karting’s Tyler Bennett (Tony Kart). The only driver to improve his score thanks to a win at the Utah State Championship series this past weekend, Bennett is sure to be among the contenders at the SKUSA SuperNationals in November.
Coming later today will be the release of the TaG Driver Rankings.
Stock Moto Driver Rankings Top-10
For the full Stock Moto Driver Rankings, Click Here
Stock Moto #1 - Fritz Leesmann
Elk Grove, California
| Fritz Leesmann|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
Northern California has produced a number of karting stars in the last few decades, and none more eccentric than Leesmann. On the track, he’s a calculated machine that when working at 100%, he’s tough to beat. Away from the track, he’s just fun to be around. Not only has his work behind the wheel bring on attention, so has the work he does as a driver coach. Working with a number of drivers over the past few years, he finds a way to connect with each driver and help them excel. That was on display in the S2 category, working the Diede brothers with Cody scoring the win and Troy placing second at the SummerNationals.
|SKUSA SuperNationals 2011 - S1||10||4||1088|
|SKUSA SpringNationals ’12 #1 - S1||9.5||2||1088|
|SKUSA SpringNationals ’12 #2 - S1||9.5||1||1105|
|SKUSA Rocky Moun Challenge ’12 #4 - S1||8.5||1||965|
|SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #1 - S1||9.5||2||1107|
|SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #2 - S1||9.5||1||1118|
Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 1.83
Average Points: 1078.5
Total Points: 6471
Stock Moto ‘ON THE MOVE’ - Alex Yates - #31
West Jordan, Utah
| Alex Yates|
The SKUSA Ladder System is in place to ensure drivers find their starting base once they enter the sport, and move up as they progress as a driver. One making his way up quickly is Alex Yates. The MSquared Karting driver began his Stock Moto career this season, starting out in S3 Novice at the Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge. Sweeping the opening weekend in Grand Junction, he ran under a provisional license in S2 at the SummerNationals, on his home track. The local knowledge paid off, competing inside the top-10 for much of the weekend, including a fifth in Sunday’s main event.
|Utah State Champs ’12 #2 - Spec Light||8||5||839|
|Utah State Champs ’12 #4 - Spec Light||8||3||840|
|SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #1 - S2||9||9||949|
|SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #2 - S2||9||5||990|
|Utah State Champs ’12 #5 - Spec Light||8||5||848|
|Utah State Champs ’12 #6 - Spec Light||8||3||871|
Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 5
Average Points: 889.5
Total Points: 5337
Upcoming Stock Moto Driver Rankings Events
|9/1||SKUSA Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge #5||S1||IMI Motorsports Complex||Dacono, CO||8.5|
|9/1||SKUSA Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge #5||S2||IMI Motorsports Complex||Dacono, CO||8|
|9/2||Rock Island Grand Prix||King of the Streets||Rock Island Grand Prix||Rock Island, IL||9|
|9/2||SKUSA Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge #6||S1||Grand Junction Motor Speedway||Grand Junction, CO||8.5|
|9/2||SKUSA Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge #6||S2||Grand Junction Motor Speedway||Grand Junction, CO||8|
|9/8||Utah State Championships #7||Spec Light||Miller Motorsports Park||Tooele, UT||8|
|9/9||Racing the Rockies #6||Spec 125||The Track at Centennial||Centennial, CO||8|
|9/15||SKUSA California ProKart Challenge #6||S1||Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix||Lancaster, CA||9|
|9/15||SKUSA California ProKart Challenge #6||S2||Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix||Lancaster, CA||8.5|
|9/15||Northeast Shifter Kart Series #5||Stock Moto||Oakland Valley Raceway Park||Cuddebackville, NY||8|
|9/29||Utah State Championships #8||Spec Light||Miller Motorsports Park||Tooele, UT||8|
EKN Driver Rankings Calculation Process
The EKN Driver Rankings are calculated using a driver’s best finishes in major North American races. Assembled using events from the previous 12 months from the current date, we use a driver’s best seven finishes in TaG and six in Stock Moto to determine their overall current point total. With each new release, results posted from more than one year ago are discarded. To deliver our ranking list, we tabulate the results of all the national programs and selected regional programs. We have included the results for the major one-off events such as the SKUSA SuperNationals, the US Rotax Max Challenge Grand Nationals, the Rock Island Grand Prix and the Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix.
Each race is initially weighted based on the prestige and history of the event or series with a score of ten (10) being the highest attainable base ranking. For 2012, the SKUSA SuperNationals and US Rotax Max Challenge Grand Nationals receive a score of 10 in their initial weighting in the TaG category while the SuperNationals is the lone event in the Stock Moto division. The SKUSA Pro Tour series events draw a base ranking of nine (9), while the WKA Manufacturer’s Cup, Florida Winter Tour, Challenge of the Americas, IKF 2-Cycle Sprint Grand Nationals, Rotax Pan American Challenge and other regional program races were given a base ranking of either eight (8) or nine (9).
The EKN staff reserves the right to adjust the rankings of each event throughout the year. A minimum entry total for any events considered for the Driver Rankings program is five (5). If an event does not have at least five (5) drivers starting the race, those results will not be tabulated toward the Driver Rankings.
Added to these initial rankings are two variables that help confirm the true importance of an event to the ranking process – field size and field strength. A percentage of one weighting point is added for the size of the field, while the number of existing top 50 drivers entered offers another full point or fraction of a point. The sum of these numbers becomes the overall ranking for any race. Following a race, drivers receive points based on their finishing positions with 100 points earned for a win. Each subsequent position drops by one point with 99 points given to the second place driver and so on throughout the field. These points are then multiplied by the overall ranking to produce a driver’s final point total from each event. Using a driver’s best seven races in TaG, six for Stock Moto, we calculate each driver’s overall score and subsequent ranking.