eKartingNews.com Driver of the Month – June 2014 – Mike McAndrews
Birel driver bags double win weekend at United States Pro Kart Series in South Bend
In a continued effort to highlight the many outstanding performances by drivers around the country, eKartingNews.com is proud to introduce the ‘Driver of the Month’ program. Each month, the staff at EKN will determine the one driver who stood out above the rest and give the viewers a chance to know exactly what they accomplished and who they are.
The inaugural United States Pro Kart Series saw a Pro/Semi-Pro split in the Leopard category. With many of the ‘Senior’ level drivers keeping to the Pro division, the Semi-Pro group was filled with mostly ‘Junior’ level pilots. Following the opening rounds of racing, Mike McAndrews emerged as the top driver, going on to win the final five feature races and earn the series championship. This year, the creation of Leopard Junior, McAndrews was joined by a number of young drivers, including many he has raced against in Yamaha competition for years. A rough opening two rounds of 2014 led to two victories last month at the Michiana Raceway Park.
South Bend weekend began with McAndrews qualifying in third behind the championship leader. Mike climbed his way to the front and scored the win in Heat #1. After a tough second heat, McAndrews remained in the third position and earned the pole position for the main event. From the drop of the green, the MRP Motorsport/Birel America driver paced the field. The race was stopped due to a red flag for an incident, and after the restart, McAndrews maintained the lead, holding off challenges from Braden Eves to secure his first victory of 2014.
Sunday began with McAndrews looking up the order, as he was sixth after the qualifying session. The opening heat race was uneventful, earning just one position while moving up to second early on in the second heat, only to fall back to third on the final lap. Following the opening laps of the main event, McAndrews put himself in the lead group, running fourth for the first portion of the race. By the halfway point, he began his attack for the lead. Taking the two laps to go signal, McAndrews made his move on the leader Ryan Norberg. On the final lap, Norberg tried a deep move in turn six, and the two made contact. Mike fought it off and continued his momentum to reach the checkered flag first for his second victory of the weekend.
It was a total of three podium finishes for McAndrews on the weekend, as he finished third in the Yamaha Junior category on Sunday. Mike celebrated his 16th birthday on Tuesday, following a rough weekend at the Pittsburgh International Race Complex for the fifth and sixth rounds of the United States Pro Kart Series. Currently fourth in the championship chase, McAndrews will close out the season with preparation for his move into the Senior level in 2015.
June 2014 EKN Driver of the Month – Mike McAndrews
Born: July 29, 1998
Hometown: West Bend, WI
Parents: Brian (Father)
Siblings: Cali (13) Cory (6)
Height/Weight: 5’6”/ 120lbs
Education: Currently attending Slinger High School
Job: Driver coaching at Michiana Raceway Park
Engine/Engine Builder: Leopard Junior (Franklin Motorsports) Yamaha Junior(Switch Racing Engines)
Sponsors: MRP Motorsport, Franklin Motorsports, Switch Racing Engines, MAC Paving, Badger Trailer Sales, Karts Ltd.,Streeter Super Stands
Series You Compete In: United States Pro Kart Series, Route 66 Sprint Series
Years Karting: 10
How did you get started in karting? My grandfather raced karts, followed by my dad, and now I get to be in the kart seat.
What has been the high point in your racing career? Winning four national championships in two different series combined, and nine regional championships in three different series combined.
What are your goals in racing? To become the next American to win the Formula One World Championship.
In a few words, how would you describe your driving style? On the edge, methodical
Funniest moment at the race track? Falling in a river at Carolina Motorsports Park and Grant Quinlan running to get help.
Favorite Track: USAIR – Shawano, Wisconsin
Favorite form of professional motorsports: Formula 1
Favorite karting driver: Mike McAndrews
Favorite professional driver: Michael Schumacher
Favorite website: eKartingNews.com
Favorite movie: Forest Gump
Favorite actor/actress: Megan Fox
Favorite music/group: Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
Favorite vacation/activity spot: The racetrack
Favorite food: Spaghetti
The Real Deal
What do you do when not at the track? Think about the track
What are your goals outside of karting? Become an automotive technician
What type of street car do you drive? N/A
What type of street car would you like to drive? 2014 Corvette
What are your pet peeves or things that irritate you? Loose steering wheel, people who run into you for no reason at all
What do you think could be done to improve the sport of karting? Get more media coverage of big events to people that know nothing of the sport of karting.
What are your favorite aspects about the sport of karting? The family based atmosphere.
June 2014 Driver of the Month – Honorable Mention:
– Alessandro Bressan: Rotax Summer Shootout – 3 Wins (2 DD2, 1 Senior Max)
– Jordan Dick: Texas ProKart Challenge – S2 Semi-Pro Round Four winner
– Brandon Lemke: WKA Manufacturers Cup Series – 2 Wins (Parilla Junior)
– David Malukas: USPKS/WKA – 3 Wins (Yamaha Junior)