Sanzaru Games Karting Series Races into Summer
Martinelli takes GoPro Stock Honda Masters Feature
Race #4 of the Sanzaru Games Karting Championships opened up the summer portion of the nine race series with a strong turnout of drivers, competitive racing and some razor thin finishes for podium positions. This was the first race time this year the drivers raced on the very fast Reverse National configuration, a paddock and fan favorite for certain!
GoPro Feature Race – Stock Honda Masters
Last year’s Champion Rene Martinelli took the pole position ahead of David Arnstein and Patrick O’Neill. At the start of the first heat, Arnstein went into the early lead with Martinelli right behind. These two drivers ran nose to tail for the entire race with Arnstein taking the win, Martinelli 2nd, Kevin Woods working his way into 3rd and Brad Shaffer 4th. In the second heat, Martinelli and Shaffer both had problems and dropped out on the first lap. Arnstein went into the early lead again and was never seriously challenged. O’Neill came home in 2nd, Woods 3rd and Justin Bennett 4th. For the GoPro feature race, Arnstein and Woods made up the front row with Martinelli right behind. Arnstein took the early lead but was soon passed by Martinelli. Arnstein chased Martinelli the entire 15 laps of the race, but could never get close enough to attempt a pass. Martinelli took the win, Arnstein 2nd just one second back, Justin Bennett found some speed and drove to a strong 3rd, O’Neill 4th and Kevin Woods 5th. For his win, Martinelli took home the GoPro Hero4 camera and $300 in Honda/HPD Bucks. Arnstein and Bennett earned $200 and $100 in Honda/HPD Bucks respectively.
Molecule Rotax Masters
Eleven drivers lined up for this race with Billy Scott taking the pole ahead of John Breidinger and Roman Alekseenkov. Scott and Breidinger would battle it out in the first heat, with Roman and Kelly Heil fighting for the 3rd spot behind them. In the end, Scott took the win, Breidinger 2nd, Heil 3rd and Roman 4th. In the second heat, Breidinger took the lead on the start with Scott right behind. Scott spin off on an infield turn on the first lap unexpectedly and fell all the way back to last place. Breidinger held the top spot for the 8 lap heat to take the win, Heil got ahead of Roman to take 2nd, Roman 3rd and Bob Olson 4th with Scott working his way back to 6th. Breidinger and Heil shared the front row for the main event with Scott and Roman right behind. Right after the start of the Main, Heil went into the lead followed by Roman, Breidinger and Scott. Breidinger attempted an inside pass on Roman on the second lap with Scott diving under Breidinger. Well, there was not enough room for the three karts and all three spun and crashed. Scott and Roman got going again but Breidinger had to park his kart. Scott was eventually black flagged for for causing the crash. Now the race had Heil way out front with Aaron Ferris, Olson, Eric Wildt, and David Palic battling for 2nd. Heil went on to an 8 second win, Olson 2nd, with Wildt coming home 3rd, his first podium in kart racing. Tad Chase and Jon Persing rounded out the top five 4th and 5th with Ferris and Palic falling back by the end of the race. For the win, Heil received $100 in Sanzaru Bucks, Olson getting $50 and Wildt $25.
Sanzaru Bucks can be used to pay for race entry or Saturday practice fees.
Molecule Micro Max
Micro Max continues to be one of the largest classes in the 2015 Sanzaru Games Series. Starting the day off strongly, Garrette Randolph Jr took the pole ahead of Owen McAllister and Sebastiaan Mulder. In the first heat race, it was Garrette, Sebastiaan and Owen as they exited turn one after the green flag. Owen was hounded the entire way by Gino Sandoval. In the end, Garrette took a 4 second win, Sebastiaan 2nd, Owen 3rd, Gino 4th and Skyler Geczi 5th. Garrette took the early lead in the second heat again and drove on to a six second win. But the fun racing was right behind as the next 4 drivers would finish the race with only 1.2 seconds separating them. Sebastiaan came home 2nd, Gino 3rd, Owen 4th and Skyler 5th. In the Main, Garrette for the third time led the field out of turn one and immediately opened up a gap over the four drivers behind him. And again, the four drivers right behind Garrette battled hard and finished the race with only 2 seconds separating them at races end. At races end, Garrette took the win, his 3rd of the year, Sebastiaan in 2nd, his best finish of the year, Owen holding off Gino to take 3rd, Gino 4th and Skyler 5th. The top three drivers received the $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
With another large field this class has had great competition all year and this weekend promised to be another tough race. Charles Hastings took the pole ahead of Tom Nelson and Geoff Provo. In the first heat, Hastings and Nelson battled early before Hastings drop out on lap four. Nelson went on to the win with Provo 2nd, Dave Holstein 3rd and Rob Mullaney 4th. Hastings fixed his problem in the first heat, took the lead, and never surrendered it to take the win, Nelson 2nd , Provo 3rd and Roger Cornwall 4th. In the Main, Nelson took the lead from the pole position with Hastings right behind. Nelson ran a strong race and made no mistakes as Hastings could not match the leader’s speed. In the end, Nelson took the win, Hastings 2nd, Provo a steady day in 3rd, Cornwall 4th and Rob Mullaney 5th. The top three received the $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
Pro Stock Honda and CRF™ 250
For this race, the new CRF 250 class combined with the Pro Stock Honda drivers and the mix of speeds worked out very well. In Qualifing, the Pro Stock karts were the fastest with Hunter Pickett on pole ahead of Pablo Carballedo and Grayson Browne with Richard Stock being the fastest 250 kart ahead of Steve Cameron, Ori Della Penna and Richard Hilleman. In the first heat, the 250 karts started the race seven rows behind the Pro Stock karts. This separation allowed the two classes to have their own separate races. In the first heat, Pablo took the lead with Pickett having problems which forced him to exit on lap six. Pablo maintained the lead and took the win, Browne 2nd. In the 250 class, the race finished in the same order as Qualifying with Stock 1st, Cameron 2nd and Della Penna 3rd. In the second heat, Pickett again had problems and exited on the first lap. Pablo took the early lead and went on to a two second win over Brown.
The 250 race had the top three drivers finishing with only one second separating them, but the order was as it had been all day. Stock took the win, Cameron 2nd and Della Penna 3rd. Pablo took the early race lead in the main with Pickett close behind. Stock again took the lead in the 250 class with Cameron close behind. Things took a bad turn on lap three when Pablo and Pickett ran side by side through the fast turn two kink. Pickett slowed suddenly and Browne was too close behind to respond and he ran right up the rear of Pickett and both flew off the track. After that, all Pablo had to do was finish the race to take the win.
The 250 race was now the battle to watch with Stock leading and Cameron close behind. Late in the race, Stock made a couple of mistakes and Cameron got by and held on to take the win, Stock 2nd and Della Penna 3rd. The Pro Stock Honda/HPD Bucks distribution was $300/$200/$100 for the top three and the CRF 250 Honda/HPD Bucks distribution was $500/$300/$200.
Molecule Junior Rotax
A lighter field of karts than normal for this class but the battle of the top three in the Main was the best racing of the day. Carter Herrera took the pole a half second faster than Mason Cohen and Colin Mullen. In the first heat, Cohen led the field through turn one with Michoff right behind and Herrera in 3rd. These three mixed it up during the first half of the race, all taking the lead but Herrera was able to work his way past both Michoff and Cohen to take a two second win with Michoff in 2nd, Cohen 3rd and Mullen 4th. In the second heat, Cohen again led the field out of turn one with Herrera right behind. Herrera was able to get by Cohen to take the win, Michoff 3rd and Clayton Williams 4th. In the Main, Williams had kart problems and was back in the paddock when the field had to roll off. On the start, Herrera got the jump on the field and led the field through turn one. The fight up front was intense and Cohen and Michoff were able to get by Herrera who got shuffled back to 4th. Herrera used his speed advantage and some patience to work his way through the field to move back into the lead spot by mid race. Herrera then pulled out a small lead as Cohen and Michoff battled just behind. In the end, Herrera took the win, Cohen 2nd, Michoff 3rd, Mullan 4th and David Tooker 5th. The top three took home $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
Molecule Senior Rotax
The Senior Rotax class was the largest of the day and was deep with talent. Jared Higham took the pole ahead of Phillippe Denes and Zach Pettinicchi. In the first heat, the hard battling started right after the field exited turn one. Higham got shuffled back a couple spots, Pettinicchi tried to make a pass but lost spots instead. When all the dicing was done, Enzo Prevost took the win, Denes 2nd, Nic LeDuc 3rd and Higham 4th. In the second heat, Higham controlled the race out of turn one. The field was mixing it up right behind him with hard and heavy racing. In the end, Higham took the win, LeDuc 2nd, Harrison Mills 3rd and Denes 4th. Only one second separated the 3rd through 7th place drivers! Higham was still on pole for the Main with Prevost alongside. On the start Prevost and Higham battled and Denes had to exit before the end of lap 1. LeDuc had to drop out on lap four. Prevost took the lead, Higham lost some ground and dropped to 3rd, Mills worked his way to 2nd and recorded the races fastest lap. In the end, Prevost took the win, his first as a Senior driver, Mils 2nd, Higham 3rd, Pettinicchi 4th and Jarrett Lile 5th. The top three took home $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
Molecule Mini Max
Dustin Salaverria took the pole ahead of Matteo Sandoval and Oliver Reed. In the first heat, Dustin took the lead out of turn one with Matteo right on Dustin’s rear bumper with Oliver staying close. At the end of the eight lap race, Dustin took the win, Matteo 2nd, Oliver 3rd, and Grant Langon 4th. In the second heat, Matteo was able to get around Dustin and went on to take the win, Dustin 2nd, Oliver 3rd and Bianca Bustamante in 4th. In the Main Matteo took the early lead with Dustin right behind. Dustin got inside Matteo going in to the tic-tac-toe complex and the two were side-by-side as they dove in together. Without enough room for that maneuver, the two karts scrubbed into each other and Matteo lost more speed than Dustin. Matteo lost enough speed that Oliver and Grant were also able to get by. Now it was Dustin in front, Oliver and Grant close behind, Matteo now getting pressure from Ryan Tate and Bianca some 5 seconds back. Dustin did not make any mistakes and went on to the win, Oliver 2nd, Grant 3rd, Matteo 4th and Ryan 5th. The top three took home $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
Gino Ghilotti took the pole from Richard Hilleman and Charles Stimmler. In the first race, Gino took the early lead and ran a smooth pace to avoid draining off his batteries. Marcos Ramirez worked his way past Hilleman and Stimmler to take 2nd, Stimmler 3rd and Hilleman 4th. In the second heat, Gino again set the pace and no one was able to challenge him. In the end, Gino takes the win, Hilleman 2nd, Stimmler 3rd and Kenyon Kluge 4th. In the Main, Gino took the initial lead with all six karts pacing themselves in a fast smooth line. Marcos challenged for the lead mid race taking the lead with Hilleman going with him moving into 2nd. But in the last 4 laps of this 12 lap race, Gino picked up the pace and moved into 2nd. On the 10th lap Gino got right behind Marcos and it looked like he had saved his batteries better than Marcos. But on white flag lap, Marcos picked it up just enough to pull away and take the win, Gino 2nd, Hilleman 3rd and Stimmler 4th. The top three took home $100/$50/$25 in Sanzaru Bucks.
For Richard Hilleman, the EVO Electric Karts are the first step towards the FIA Formula E series. His vision is to have the EVO karts feed into a Radical prototype EV entry in the SCCA that will later serve as the foundation for a drive in the internationally recognized and revolutionary Formula E Series. For more information, visit Richard and the rest of the EVO field, in the Rattlesnake electric kart pits during next month’s Sanzaru Games Karting Championship event.
Next race will be on July 12, where the track configuration will be the National Track with the Molecule Rotax Masters as the GoPro Featured class.
Results and points can be viewed on the Sanzaru Karting web site at sanzarukarting.com/racing.html.