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SKUSA Winter Series

EKN Trackside: 2023 Superkarts! USA Winter Series – AMR2 – Sunday Report
Monday, 13 February 2023 06:57

A big X30 Senior win on Championship Sunday gave Brit Joe Turney the SKUSA Winter Series title (Photo: OTP)

The final round of the Superkarts! USA Winter Series offered up a day full of ultra-competitive racing and the championship battles, as everyone headed into the main events at the AMR Homestead-Miami Motorplex with different goals. The weather has cooled off a little from Saturday, but while the rain clouds loomed late in the day, it was dry racing from start to finish. Taking ‘Championship Sunday’ quite seriously, British talent Joe Turney scored the main event win in X30 Senior to clinch the title, as did AJ Myers in Pro Shifter. Collin Lloyd emerged with the victory in KA100 Senior and while it did not translate into a Winter Series title, it was his second win of the year and certainly put his name in the national spotlight.

Factory Kart Republic driver Joe Turney (Chad Dokken Racing / DAP) delivered a virtually flawless performance in the Speed Concepts X30 Senior category, beginning the day by topping qualifying over Ryan Norberg (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic). Turney led from the green in the Prefinal, but both Norberg and Saturday winner Austin Garrison (Speed Concepts Racing / Redspeed) also took turns up front before Turney eventually went back to the lead to lock down the pole for the 22-lap main event. Heading into the final, with his pole position and Prefinal points in hand, Turney was in the driver’s seat for the championship, as Norberg and Garrison needed to win to force his hand.

The Final was all Norberg and Turney, with Turney holding the point until lap four when Norberg made his bid for the lead. Garrison’s title aspirations went south quickly as he got nerfed off the track at the start in Turn 1 and ended up seventh at the end of the first lap. Up front, Norberg was focused on trying to stretch away early, but Turney’s set-up continued to come in, and he was on Norberg’s bumper quickly. The multi-time SKUSA champion paced four laps before Turney went by for good, keeping Norberg at bay for the remainder of the race. A perfect day delivered Turney his first US series title with a 0.487-second win.

AJ Myers topped the Pro Shifter field once again (Photo: OTP)

The fight for the final podium spot went to Garrison, who worked his way back to the lead of the chase group, followed by his SCR teammate Pauly Massimino (Redspeed) and rookie senior Ayden Ingratta (Redspeed). Matheus Morgatto (PSL Karting / Birel ART) jumped to third early but appeared to back out for Garrison to chase the title, and he ended up down in 13th after final lap contact with Thomas Nepveu (CDR / Kart Republic).

In the PSL Karting Pro Shifter class, AJ Myers (Magik Kart USA / Magik Kart) again dominated the action over Giorgio Carrera (International Motorsports / Lenzo Kart), although Carrera’s fast lap was only a tenth off the multi-time SKUSA Pro Tour champion. Pedro Piquet (PSL Karting / Birel ART) completed the podium. In Greyhound Racing Seats Master Shifter, Scott Barnes (Magik Kart USA / Magik Kart) took the win after Daniel Dibos (International Motorsports / Lenzo Kart) was hit with the pushback penalty.

In X30 Junior, Ernesto Rivera scored his second win to secure the class championship (Photo: OTP)

Ernesto Rivera (RPG / Kosmic) seemed in control all day in Rolison Performance Group X30 Junior, despite swapping the top spot twice during the final with Steven Miller (CDR / Kart Republic). Even with these challenges, Rivera scored the Prefinal and Final win after grabbing pole on Sunday morning. In the final, Rivera crossed the line by 7.5 seconds up the road from Miller, taking the championship in the process. Leonardo Escorpioni (Zanella Racing / Tony Kart) ran second early but ended up finishing third, having run with the top-two for the entire race. It was his second podium of the day, capping off a successful weekend for the Florida native. Enzo Vidmontiene (MottazSport / Parolin) went into Sunday sitting second in points with a chance to win the title, but he ultimately came up short, finishing just off the podium in fourth. Rounding out the top five was Illinois native Cameron Brinkman (Mike Doty Racing / LN Kart).

Collin Lloyd earned his second KA100 Senior win of the series (Photo: OTP)

Collin Lloyd and Magik Kart USA dominated at the front of the field in Aspen Sport KA100 Senior, taking pole position and winning both the Prefinal and the Final. Lloyd had his most dominant run of the day in the Prefinal, coming home 4.3 seconds in front of Peyton Phillips (RPM / Tony Kart), who would earn the championship with his Sunday performance. Although Phillips wasn’t able to match his result from Saturday, he still stood on the podium in third at the end of the day, behind Cameron Weinberg (Speed Concepts / CRG). Aiden Levy (Alonso Kart) finished his Winter Series campaign in fourth after a strong run of results that saw him with a shot at the title heading into the day. The top-five was capped by Vinnie Meskelis (MRT / Tony Kart), who finished in fifth in both main events on the weekend.

Leonardo Escorpioni scored his first SKUSA victory in KA100 Junior (Photo: OTP)

After hounding the front runners both weekends, Escorpioni scored the win in the final round of MottazSport KA100 Junior, coming out on top of a great three-kart fight with Rivera and Miller. Rivera looked to be the favorite at the start of the day, going fastest in qualifying and taking the win in the Prefinal. Escorpioni was able to break away from the duo in the end, coming across the line 1.8 seconds in front of Miller, the 2023 class champion. Rivera ended up in third, rounding out the podium. The trio would go at it again later in the day in X30 Senior, as we detailed above. Rivera’s RPG teammate Hudson Schwartz (Kosmic) finished behind the trio in fourth. Coming in fifth to complete a strong advancement after a 13th place qualifying run was Alex Mercado (Speed Concepts / Redspeed), who made up eight spots in the Prefinal.

RPG leader Mike Rolison completed his double-win weekend in KA100 Master (Photo: OTP)

Rolison Performance Group owner Mike Rolison (RPG / Kosmic) backed up his impressive Saturday performance in the Kart Racing Solutions KA100 Master class after qualifying second to title contender Luis Schiavo. Rolison would move forward to win the Prefinal and then drove away in the main event for a flag-to-flag 9.435-second victory. The battle upfront changed on the warm-up lap when Schiavo pulled off the track with a mechanical issue, essentially handing the class championship to Michel Garrido (Alessandros Racing / Tony Kart). Garrido jumped quickly to second at the start of the race, but he was eventually embroiled in a heated dice with Mario Barrios (RPG / Kosmic), which ended up with Barrios finishing second, despite a contact-filled final run through the last corners. With Barrios and Garrido finishing second and third, the remainder of the top-five included Miguel Mier (Orsolon Racing / Tony Kart) and Takeharu Nakamori (Supertune / Tony Kart).

Lucas Palacio won his third Mini Swift race of the series (Photo: OTP)

With a packed grid of 43 karts taking to the track for qualifying in DNJ Intermodal Services Mini Swift, the driver sitting atop the chart after the four laps was Michael McGaughy (RPM / Parolin). In the Prefinal, McGaughy was up front early but was eventually pushed back to 12th during a couple of on-track incidents. He’d be back near the front before all was said and done. Alessandro Truchot (Parolin USA / Parolin) took his place up front, finishing ahead of Lucas Palacio (Kart Republic), who qualified 13th and drove his way through the pack to secure an outside front row start spot for the final. The main event saw Truchot lead from the start, pacing the first 13 laps with Ashton Woon (Supertune / Parolin) on his bumper as Palacio got shuffled back to seventh. As he began his drive forward, McGaughy was also on the move. Palacio worked back up the Truchot and then took over the lead lap 13, pulling away to a 1.113-second win. McGaughy’s drive back to the front ended up with a strong second-place finish after he passed Truchot for the position on lap 13. Truchot’s consistency throughout the series, in both the Prefinals and the Finals, resulted in the class championship, finishing just four points ahead of Palacio. In the Sunday race, Woon ended up fourth ahead of Santiago Namnum (FLC / Parolin).

Maxwell Macha earned his first SKUSA national win in Micro Swift (Photo: OTP)

After driving to the podium on Saturday, Maxwell Macha (SLA / Parolin) topped all three sessions in RYSA Racing Micro Swift. Macha jumped quickly to the lead at the start of the 20-lap final with Parker Ives (Nitro Kart) right with him, and the two drivers worked together to pull away. Ives moved to the lead on lap three and held the spot until he pulled off the track on lap eight with a mechanical failure. This left Macha without a challenger and he simply drove away to score an 11.219-second victory, his first in SKUSA competition. The fight for second was waged between Colton Schniegenberg (GWR / Energy) and class champion Antonio Pizzonia Neto (Orsolon Racing / Parolin), with Pasha Ali (Parolin USA / Parolin) jumping into the fray as well. Over the final laps, Schniegenberg emerged from the group to grab second while Ali finally shed the back luck that’s been plaguing him to finish on the podium in third. Also of note, Saturday winner Joao Paulo Bonadiman (Orsolon Racing / Tony Kart) had an issue in the Prefinal, but drove from 26th to ninth to garner the ‘Hard Charger’ honors.

With a successful Winter Series in the books, Superkarts! USA will now turn its sights on the opening rounds of the 2023 Pro Tour, the WinterNationals, which is set for the March 30 – April 2 weekend at the Orlando Kart Center in Orlando, Florida.