2013 SKUSA Pro Tour SummerNationals to Invade Colorado
Grand Junction Motor Speedway to host Superkarts! USA national tour next weekend
The fourth season of the Superkarts! USA Pro Tour is becoming one of historic proportions, thanks to the unparalleled 2013 prize package and record numbers that were attracted for the opening round event, the SpringNationals in Tucson, Arizona back in April. The series has enjoyed incredible momentum since its debut in 2010, and this year has followed the upward trend. The program continues with its 2013 schedule next week, when the popular Grand Junction Motor Speedway will host the SummerNationals. The July 19-21 event marks the second occasion on which the challenging 9/10-mile circuit in Grand Junction, Colorado will welcome the SKUSA Pro Tour competitors, and another record number of racers are expected to take part in the battle – especially considering the fact that the paddock needed to be physically enlarged to fit in all of the pit spot requests.
“It’s another exciting few weeks for Superkarts! USA,” stated SKUSA president Tom Kutscher. “We set an entry record for Rocky Mountain ProKart Challenge this past weekend in Colorado, as many people made the trip to warm up for the Pro Tour race. The event was the largest for the state this year, and we are hoping for another record turnout for the SummerNationals. Grand Junction is really a great place to visit and the facility is perfect for our Pro Tour program. The track is challenging, technical and fast, and the Cook family always goes out of their way to work with us to make sure things are perfect! The number of shifterkarts in attendance at the regional race was awesome to see, and we expect the TaG competitors to be there in full force for next weekend, as well.”
Superkarts! USA will once again set out a solid cash purse for drivers to chase during the Grand Junction weekend. A possible $9,000 is available for the taking, with the S1 and TaG Senior Pro divisions competing for a $1,750 purse, each including a cool $1000 going to the overall weekend winner. SKUSA is also offering a $1,000 weekend purse to the top 3 competitors in the rest of the categories, should a class hit the 30-entry mark at the event. The SpringNationals saw S2 Semi-Pro, S4 Master, and TaG Cadet racing for cash back in April. Those same categories have a growing pre-entry roster that should see them race again for the $500-to-win check.
A number of industry members have pledged their support for the SKUSA SummerNationals Grand Junction weekend, signing on as class sponsors to help further establish the Pro Tour event as the best program in the sport. The class sponsors are as follows, and SKUSA wishes to thank them for their support:
S1 Pro Stock Moto – CRG-USA
TaG Senior – DRT Racing
S2 Semi-Pro Stock Moto – Pure Karting
S4 Master Stock Moto – GT7 Motorsports
TaG Master – Italcorse America
S5 Junior Stock Moto – Karting Coach
TaG Junior – Phil Giebler Racing
TaG Cadet – Rolison Performance Group
Starting with the SpringNationals, the race for the class championships were put into motion and the primary contenders stepped to the forefront. There are three rounds of racing still to go in 2013 for the Pro Tour, with two rounds taking place at Grand Junction and the finale being part of SuperNationals XVII in Las Vegas come November. Drivers will have to be on their games if they wish to vie for the title this season.
The same three drivers who fought for the S1 Pro Stock Moto title last year are in the hunt once again in 2013, although a newcomer has entered the mix, one who has raised the excitement level considerably. Defending champ Fritz Leesmann holds a 40-point lead over last year’s #2 driver Joey Wimsett; a similar gap to last year’s chase when the drivers headed to the SummerNationals. This lead duo is now joined by 2012 S2 champion Sabré Cook, who impressed the paddock with two podium finishes in her S1 debut at the SpringNationals. Kiwi Daniel Bray enters the Colorado round sitting fourth in the chase; however, the 2011 champ is coming off a strong outing in Europe and will be looking to break through with a big win.
Two victories in his Pro Tour debut have put Andrew Zimmer at the top of the standings in TaG Senior, as he now leads young gun Jonathan May by 50 points. Veteran Matt Johnson and SoCal star Louie Pagano, the current #1 ranked TaG Senior pilot on the eKartingNews.com Driver Rankings, trail the leading pair heading to Grand Junction.
S2 Semi-Pro Stock Moto provided exciting racing throughout the weekend in Tucson, and more is expected at the SummerNats. Texan Garrett Boone captured a main event victory to leave the SpringNationals with the top spot in the standings. Ryan Kinnear makes it a Texas 1-2, earning two podium finishes in Tucson, while Colorado driver Christian Schureman welcomes the series to his home state and enters the weekend sitting third. Schureman was a victor at the SummerNationals last year, when he won the Saturday main event at Miller Motorsports Park in Utah. If he can repeat at his home track, the championship chase will certainly tighten. In S4 Master Stock Moto, Jordon Musser nearly earned a perfect score at the SpringNats, taking home two wins and a solid advantage in the point chase. A group of other contenders, including Willy Musgrave, Brian Fisher, Robert Marks and Rob Logan, are fighting for the ‘challenger’ role with the goal of closing the 188-point advantage Musser now enjoys. In TaG Master, Scott Falcone and Paul Bonilla split the victories at the first double-event of the season, although a better overall weekend gives Falcone the point lead by 55 markers.
Between the two Junior categories, four different drivers stood at the top of the podium in Tucson. Carter Williams was one of those drivers, winning round one in the S5 Junior Stock Moto division to lead the point chase. Jarred Campbell won the other S5 main event, tabbing these two drivers as the ones to beat in Colorado. Utah driver Austin Versteeg did not win at the SpringNationals, but his overall weekend performance in TaG Junior placed him at the top of the championship standings. Race winners Blaine Rocha and Luke Selliken are Versteeg’s top challengers, all within 43 points. Chase Farley was solid in TaG Cadet, nearly sweeping the entire event to hold a solid advantage heading into the SummerNationals. A host of other Cadet drivers, including Jackson Logsdon, Trenton Sparks and Myles Farhan, lead the charge in an effort to cut into Farley’s cushion.
Pre-registration for the SKUSA Pro Tour SummerNationals will remain open until midnight this Sunday, July 14. The pre-entry fees are $395 for S1 and TaG Senior and $350 for all other classes – which includes Friday practice, Saturday and Sunday race fees, and the driver’s pit pass. Head to the following link to sign up (http://www.skusastore.com/product-p/protour-entry-sumr13.htm). Those unable to submit their entry prior to the deadline will be forced to enter trackside beginning Thursday, July 18, for a flat fee of $500.
SKUSA would also like to pass along a reminder for anyone planning to pick up extra products at the track, like practice tires or extra fuel. Those products must be pre-ordered (via email at firstname.lastname@example.org) or pre-purchased (online at http://www.skusastore.com) by midnight on Sunday, July 14 to guarantee their availability on site. Team orders are due by this Friday, July 12. Pit spots and camping spots must also be reserved, and are almost completely sold out! For that information, click on this link (http://www.superkartsusa.com/national/skusa-pro-tour/pit-spot-reservations.html).
For additional details about the SummerNationals, including tent rentals, overnight camping, and the tentative weekend schedule, visit the SKUSA SummerNats event page (http://www.superkartsusa.com/national/skusa-pro-tour/event-calendar/summernationals.html). Follow updates at http://www.superkartsusa.com as well as on Twitter at @SuperKartsUSA and at Facebook.com/SKUSA.