EKN Trackside: 2019 WKA Charlotte Motor Speedway Karting Challenge – Sunday Report
Duncovich and Rivest triumph in Senior while Nicholson and Maxwell top Junior podiums
Matthew Duncovich ran away with the victory in IAME Senior for his career first win on-track (Photo: EKN)
The final day of action came to a close on Sunday for the return of karting racing to the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The World Karting Association pulled off the triple, hosting three events at the Concord, North Carolina facility on the weekend for the first ever Charlotte Motor Speedway Karting Challenge. Speedway Dirt wrapped up its second day of racing last night, while the Manufacturers Cup Series and National Road Racing Series completed their second day of racing inside ‘America’s Home for Racing’. Weather was not a factor all day with warm temperatures and no rain in the area. That allowed all eight categories at the Man. Cup program to complete their qualifying, Prefinal and Final program to complete Round Eight of the 2019 championship program.
The last class on the day was the KA100 Senior division, which put on a great show for their 16-lap Final. Brooke Nachtmann (Tony Kart) led the field to the green flag after setting fast time in qualifying and winning the Prefinal. She would lead the opening two circuits until Alexander Kardashian (AMK / Top Kart) took over for four laps. Then it began the shuffling. A lead change nearly every lap until the end with Sebastian Rivest (KSNA / Kart Republic) shuffling his way to the point as the white flag waved. Rivest would hold on through the final circuit, keeping Kardashian back at the checkered flag by 66 thousandths of a second. The victory is the first for Rivest in WKA competition. Nachtmann completed the podium in third with Jacob Graham (Nitro Kart) set fast time in the race en route to fourth with Saturday winner Pauly Massimino (Timmy Tech / CompKart) placing fifth.
Matthew Duncovich (KSNA / Kart Republic) picked up his first victory in the IAME Senior division. Duncovich led all 16 laps to victory with top qualifier Jake Venberg (Franklin / Kosmic) trailing in second with Prefinal winner Logan Cozzie (Timmy Tech / CompKart) in third.
The KA100 Junior division went down to the wire as well, with Adam Maxwell (Top Kart) coming out with the victory. Maxwell set fast time in qualifying but ended up second in the Prefinal. It was won by Tyler Wettengel (KSNA / FA Kart) but an on-track infraction put him to fourth in the order and gave Hayden Jones (Nitro Kart) the win. Wettengel fought his way to the point by lap four of the Final, only to receive the meatball flag for a broken rear bumper. That left Jones and Maxwell to battle for the victory. Maxwell took the lead from Jones on the final circuit, and reached the line first for the victory. Westin Workman (Timmy Tech / CompKart) trailed the duo to complete the podium. Sam Corry (Tony Kart) and Trevor Watson (Tony Kart) completed the top-five.
It was a near sweep for Hayden Jones (Nitro / Tony Kart) in the IAME Junior class. Jones was the quickest in qualifying and came out the winner in the Prefinal. Tyler Wettengel (KSNA / FA Kart) and Nathan Nicholson (Checkered / Tony Kart) shuffled for the lead with Jones in the closing laps after he led the first 10 circuits. Contact on the final lap through the turn five section spun Wettengel around and Jones went on to reach the checkered flag first. Officials scored Jones in the third position, thus handing the victory to Nicholson. That promoted Adam Maxwell (Top Kart) to the runner-up position while Wettengel was classified fourth with a pushback bumper penalty assessed.
The Mini Swift division kept everyone on their toes watching the young drivers navigate the lightning quick 9/10-mile course. The 16-lap main event ended up becoming a three-driver fight in the last few laps including top qualifier Ben Maier (Nitro Kart), Prefinal winner Sebastian Ng (Nitro Kart) and Saturday #1 Parker DeLong (Nitro Kart). Ng led the first 10 laps before Maier took over the top spot. Despite heavy pressure from his teammates, Maier held off to the checkered flag for his second victory of the season. DeLong came up 28 thousandths short, placing runner-up with Ng in third. Austin Jurs (Franklin / Merlin) was close behind in fourth for his best finish of 2019 while Adam Brickley (Nitro Kart) posted fast lap of the race in his fifth place performance.
Maier (Nitro Kart) nearly pulled off the sweep and a second victory on the day in the Briggs 206 Cadet division. Fast time in qualifying and winning the Prefinal put Maier on pole position for the main event. He led the long train of a lead group that eventually dwindled down to five. Maier led the first 15 laps of the main event, however, not the 16th and final circuit. In the final few corners, Parker DeLong (Nitro Kart) and Spencer Conrad (Nitro Kart) were able to slip inside and reach the checkered flag first. It was the first win for DeLong in category. Sebastian Ng (Nitro Kart) was fourth with Lanie Buice (Bandit) a solid fifth in her debut at the Manufacturers Cup Series.
Two drivers had control of the top spot on the day in the Micro Swift class until the very end. Top qualifier Spencer Conrad (Nitro Kart) and Ayden Patty (Nitro Kart) swapped the lead for the first 15 laps of the Final. A group of drivers were trailing and on the final circuit, the door opened for Carson Weinberg (Nitro Kart). It was Weinberg who came around the final corner in the lead, reaching the line first for his first victory of 2019. Hoyt Mohr (Nitro Kart) slipped by for second at the line ahead of Patty. Conrad dropped to fourth with Sarah Bradley (Top Kart) placing fifth.
For the third time this season, Jacob Schaible (Emmick) scored the victory in the Kid Kart class. Schaible won the Prefinal and led all 12 laps of the Final. Saturday winner Adam Wooldridge (Birel ART) completed a double podium weekend, placing second and only 95 thousandths back of Schaible. Joining them on the podium was Jordon Pulchlopek (Praga) in third with Colton McQuade (Top Kart) and Rodney Dowless Jr. (Top Kart) completing the top-five.
The WKA Manufacturers Cup Series will take the month of July off and prepare for a return to the Badger state. The Wolf Paving Raceway – home of the Badger Kart Club – will host Rounds Nine and Ten on August 23-25 in Dousman, Wisconsin.