|EKN Winter Rotax Driver Rankings - 2008 Final Standings
After some delay due to a busy few weeks at the EKN offices, the leading karting website is proud to release the final standings for the inaugural EKN Winter Rotax Driver Rankings. The new program was created at the beginning of the year as a fun tool to match up the six race programs of the Florida Winter Tour (FWT) and Gatorz Challenge of the Americas (CoA). Both programs wrapped up at the end of March allowing the final results to be entered into the EKN rankings formulas.
With the final push of the enter key, Pier-Luc Ouellette, Wes Phillips and Michael Riolo have earned the #1 spot in their respective classes.
| Pier-Luc Ouellette|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
For DD2 Rankings, Click Here
Defending DD2 World Champion Pier-Luc Ouellette earned the #1 spot in the EKN Winter Rotax Driver Rankings DD2 category. Though the Canadian did not win the FWT DD2 championship, he scored enough points in the rankings to sit first ahead of fellow countryman Kyle Herder and FWT DD2 champion Stuart Marsell. Ouellette scored two victories and a total of five top five finishes on the Tour. Herder, his SRA Karting teammate, had five podium finishes counted toward his point total, just nine short of PLO’s total. Herder had one win, two runner-ups and two third place finishes. Marsell, driving for BTK Motorsports, gave Arrow the top three spots in the DD2 rankings. The Florida native recorded one win, three runner-ups and a third place finish, but his point total was only good enough for the third spot.
Rounding out the top five were West Coasters Joey Collins and Curtis Cooksey. Collins made the trek from California to Florida for the three weekends of the Tour to battle those names listed above. Collins, who was a member of the America’s Team presented by Mazda that went to the 2007 Rotax Grand Finals, had five top ten finishes on three tracks he had never seen before. Fifth overall was the Challenge of the Americas DD2 champion Curtis Cooksey. Also a member of the Grand Finals team last year, the Las Vegas pilot was unchallenged as the DD2 numbers for the CoA were not as expected.
DD2 #1 - Pier-Luc Ouellette
Terrebonne, Quebec, Canada
|Florida Winter Tour Round #1||1||988|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #2||2||975|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #3||1||959|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #4||5||920|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #6||3||922|
Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 2.4
Average Points: 952.8
Total Points: 4764
| Wes Phillips|
(Photo: Go Racing Magazine)
For Senior Rankings, Click Here
In Senior, it was a Challenge of the Americas 1-2 with former Grand National champion Wes Phillips earning the #1 ranking over fellow Californian Joey Collins. Phillips, the 2005 Grand National champion, earned a spot to the Rotax Grand Finals with his CoA championship. Five top-five finishes, including two wins put Phillips in the number one spot. Collins, when not running DD2 in Florida, returned back home to run Senior at the Gatorz program. Collins stood on the top step of the podium three times in six races, however his two other finishes counted toward the rankings were a third and ninth, leaving him 40 points short.
FWT took the final three spots in the top five with Brazilian Fabio Orsolon, Ben Searcy, and Victor Pedrosa. Orsolon would have been the FWT champion if not for fellow countryman Felipe Guimaraes - who scored four straight Senior class victories for the class championship. In the rankings however Guimaraes was only 34th having competed in just four events on during the winter program. Searcy, the top American pilot in the FWT Senior class, started the Tour out slow but recorded four top ten finishes, including two podiums at the final round in Ocala. Pedrosa was up and down, earning a win in the opening weekend and recording three more top ten finishes.
Senior #1 - Wes Phillips
American Canyon, CA
|Challenge of the Americas Round #2||1||1006|
|Challenge of the Americas Round #3||1||1000|
|Challenge of the Americas Round #4||4||953|
|Challenge of the Americas Round #5||3||997|
|Challenge of the Americas Round #6||2||1002|
Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 2.2
Average Points: 991.6
Total Points: 4958
| Michael Riolo|
(Photo: On Track Promotions - otp.ca)
For Masters Rankings, Click Here
For the more ‘experienced’ and ‘stronger’ drivers, the Masters category provides great racing for many drivers who need to return back home by Monday morning to get back to work. But don’t be fooled, these guys know how to drive and Michael Riolo was just a bit better than the rest of the Masters during the winter months. The Florida Winter Tour Masters champion had two solid opening weekends, standing on the podium in three of four races including a victory. A sixth place in the final weekend secured the Florida driver the top spot in the Masters rankings. Canadian Denis Lachance was his toughest rival at the Tour and ended the year second in the rankings as well. Three podium finishes and two-fifth place runs gave Lachance enough points for second, but 51 points short of the #1 spot.
Third in the rankings was Californian Ian Thomas. Running eight races in the three months by competing at the second weekend of the Florida Winter Tour, gave him the advantage on his CoA rival Erik Von Zeipel, who is classified fourth in the rankings. Thomas had five podium finishes, but no victories while Von Zeipel had three wins, a second, and a fourth place to his credit. Though Von Zeipel earned the CoA Masters championship, Thomas has some bragging rights being one spot higher in the rankings.
Rounding out the top five in Masters is a new Rotax competitor, Paul Montopoli. The New Jersey driver recorded three runner-up finishes - one behind professional road racer Max Papis, along with two-top ten runs.
Masters #1 - Michael Riolo
|Florida Winter Tour Round #1||2||993|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #2||1||1003|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #3||1||1003|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #4||4||964|
|Florida Winter Tour Round #6||6||914|
Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 2.8
Average Points: 975.4
Total Points: 4877
EKN Winter Rotax Driver Rankings Calculation Process
The EKN Winter Rotax Driver Rankings will be calculated using a driver’s best five point totals of the Florida Winter Tour and Challenge of the Americas from January to March. To deliver this ranking list, EKN will give each event a base ranking of nine (9). Added to the initial ranking are two variables that help rank each race - field size and field strength. A percentage of one weighting point is added for the size of the field, while the number of 2007 Rotax Grand Nationals main event qualifiers offers another full point or fraction of a point. The sum of these numbers becomes the overall ranking for each race.
Following a race, drivers receive points based on their finishing position 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 race.