EKN Exclusive: Superkarts! USA SuperNationals 26 – Preview Series – X30 Senior
19 different drivers have put name into record books for headline division
eKartingNews.com is proud to present our Preview Series for the SKUSA SuperNationals 26. Leading up to the on-track action of the 2023 edition of the marquee SKUSA event, EKN will preview each of the nine categories that will compete on the temporary circuit located outside the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas from November 8-12.
Trackside coverage is set to begin on Tuesday, November 7 as the EKN crew sets up our SuperNationals 26 home, roaming the LVMS grounds with Paddock Insider and social media content. Coverage continues into Wednesday as karts hit the track for the first time. EKN Live begins on Thursday, November 9 as qualifying is conducted for both the morning classes and the afternoon divisions. Listen LIVE to the heat races throughout Friday, November 10 and into Situation Saturday, November 11, including the five Last Chance Qualifiers held on the day. That sets everything up for SuperSunday, with the main events for SuperNationals 26 audio streamed live on eKartingNews.com/live and eKartingNews.com/radio.
Complete coverage of the Superkarts! USA SuperNationals 26 can be found at the EKN EVENT PAGE.
Twenty years ago was the debut of the TaG Senior category during the seventh edition of the SuperNationals. During that span, 19 drivers have won in the 19 different SuperSunday main events, all with unique and memorable stories – representing eight different countries. While this may be the smallest field for the class at the SuperNationals since 2005, one driver will come out of the event as a SuperNationals winner. Just one of the 63 drivers set to do battle has ever claimed a SuperNationals victory in the category, with four others looking for a second career triumph at the largest karting event in the world.
Defending race winner Evan Giltaire is not returning to defend his crown, leaving the pathway for another driver to claim the hardware on SuperSunday. The one former class winner is five-time SKUSA Pro Tour champion Ryan Norberg (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic). Norberg claimed his only SuperNationals triumph at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2021 to further etch his name as one of the most decorated karters in USA history. He was among the drivers in contention last year, coming up short and having his position taken away following tech inspection. While this year’s effort to claim a sixth SKUSA title came up short despite five podium finishes, he was able to claim a third straight USPKS championship. The one thing that has stood out, zero victories in 2023.
This year’s SKUSA Pro Tour champion Joe Turney (Chad Dokken Racing / Kart Republic) was set to make his SuperNationals until suffering an injury during the FIA Karting OK World Championship. We again wish the best to Joe during his recovery and rehab process for a return back to USA karting. Third in this year’s championship was 2022 FIA Karting OK World Champion Matheus Morgatto (PSL Karting / Birel ART). One win to his credit on the SKUSA season, while the Brazilian swept the Florida Winter Tour and is coming off victory at the ROK Vegas event to help solidify his best Senior season in the USA. He finished fourth in 2018 and was a DNF last year coming off his world title.
The lone podium finisher from last year’s main event is Israel’s Ariel Elkin (Racelab / TB Kart). He’s been focused on car racing this season, however, returned to Canada for karting events, earning victory in Rotax competition. Alessandro de Tullio (International Motorsport / Kart Republic) is the only other top-10 finisher from SuperNats 25. He finished sixth, one spot off the podium with Parolin USA last year. This season, he’s been among the most consistent drivers, and sits third in the EKN TaG Driver Rankings presented by Skip Barber Racing School.
Aside from Norberg, there are four other former SuperNationals winners in the field. Pauly Massimino (Brandon Jarsocrak Racing / LN Racing Kart) took the top honors in KA100 Senior in 2021. His lone start in the category was last year, placing 18th. Canadian Thomas Nepveu (KR Motorsport / Kart Republic) won the main event for Mini Swift in 2016. The best finish in his three starts for X30 Senior is fifth in 2021, however, the NASCAR Pinty’s Series Rookie of the Year has not competed in karting very much in 2023.
Nepveu is among 29 drivers from outside the USA. British driver and SKUSA Pro Tour race winner Oliver Hodgson (CompKart), Belgium driver Elie Goldstein (Racelab / TB Kart), Khali Atkins (Croc Promotions) – the Jamaican who resides in the UK that is coming off victory at the IAME Warrior Final in Spain, and Dmitry Matveev – one of the factory drivers for Kart Republic. Add in USA regulars Brandon Carr (Ryan Perry Motorsport / Tony Kart), Harley Keeble (Piquet Sports / Sodi Kart) and Brazilian Diego Ramos (PSL Karting / Birel ART) as other drivers looking to take their country to the top of the podium.
The two most recent SuperNationals winners in the field are from last year. X30 Master winner Thomas Grice (PSL Karting / Birel ART) shocked the paddock with his victory a year ago. With no class, Grice moved to the Senior division as the 31-year-old will try to contend against the young guns of the world. Among them is Senior rookie Ernesto Rivera (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic). Last year’s X30 Junior winner is making the move up after a dominating 12 months in the Junior ranks, earning the SKUSA Pro Tour X30 Junior title, and two championships at the USPKS program. He will be racing both X30 and KA, along with 19 others in the field.
Among the top rookies in the field are last year’s SKUSA X30 Junior champion Caleb Gafrarar (Leading Edge Motorsports / OTK) – who finished second; Jesus Vasquez Jr. (Nash Motorsportz / EOS) – a fourth-place finisher a year ago; and Max Taylor (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic).
Other notables in the field include Austin Garrison (Speed Concepts Racing / Redspeed), Dalton Hanes (Chad Dokken Racing / Kart Republic), Frankie Mossman (MDR / Kosmic), Chase Hand (GFC Karting) – making his X30 Senior debut, and Nicholas Terlecki (Hotz Driver Development / Exprit) – a podium finisher in KA100 Senior back in 2021.
1 – X30 Senior SuperNationals winners in the field
5 – Former SuperNationals winners in the field
12 – Different countries represented in the field
4 – Drivers graduating from Junior classes last year
29 – Drivers from outside of the USA
20 – Double duty drivers
Provisional Entry List – X30 Senior
|308||Justin Adakonis||Leading Edge Motorsports||Bestkart||Ridgefield CT||US|
|325||Khali Atkins||Croc Promotions||GB|
|336||Cadan Bell||Mike Doty Racing||LN Racing Kart||Breckenridge CO||US|
|321||Lewis Bird||Croc Promotion||Croc Promotion||GB|
|378||Donovan Bonilla||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||MX|
|312||Oliver Calvo||Speed Concepts Racing||Redspeed||Stockton CA||US|
|375||Brandon Carr||Ryan Perry Motorsport||Tony Kart||GB|
|343||Gia Cicero||Rolison Performance Group||Tony Kart||Pound Ridge NY||US|
|337||Diego Contecha||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||CO|
|329||Alessandro de Tullio||International Motorsport||Kart Republic||Miami FL||US|
|346||Ariel Elkin||Racelab||TB Kart||IL|
|368||Santiago Fernandez||AJF RACING||Tony Kart||Miami FL||US|
|311||Isaac Finer||Racelab||JV Kart||CA|
|392||Josh Finer||Racelab||JV Kart||CA|
|315||Valentin Flaminni||PSL Karting||Birel ART||AR|
|352||Luke French||CB Motorsports||Kosmic||Scottsdale AZ||US|
|354||Caleb Gafrarar||MDR – BJR||Kosmic||Midland NC||US|
|349||Sebastian Garcia||Kart Republic||Kart Republic||MX|
|396||Brian Garcia||Ryan Perry Motorsport||Kosmic||Pembroke Pines FL||US|
|309||Christian Garduno||Orsolon Racing||Parolin||MX|
|326||Austin Garrison||Speed Concepts Racing||Redspeed||Davie FL||US|
|356||Elie Goldstein||Racelab||TB Kart||BE|
|319||Thomas Grice||Birel ART||GB|
|317||Chase Hand||GFC Karting||GFC||Wilton CA||US|
|367||Dalton Hanes||KR Motorsport Srl||Kart Republic||Greensboro NC||US|
|338||Scott Hargrove||Catalyst Driver Development||Italkart||CA|
|374||Maxim Haroutounian||Team BBR||Falcon Kart||NL|
|359||Oliver Hodgson||CompKart||CompKart||Phoenix AZ||GB|
|323||Hayden Jones||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||Matthews NC||US|
|382||Nicolas Karalis||Tony Kart||AR|
|355||Alexander Kardashian||AMK Race Products||EOS||St. Paul MN||US|
|365||Harley Keeble||Sodi by Piquet Sports||Sodi Kart||GB|
|332||Sergio Koch||Checkered Motorsports||CH|
|369||Wout Kurstjens||PSL Karting||Birel ART||NL|
|372||Austin Lee||Tony Kart||Weisendorf bar||US|
|328||Laurent Legault||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||CA|
|380||Frederik Lund||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||Miami FL||US|
|370||Pauly Massimino||Speed Concepts Racing||Kosmic||Indian Trail NC||US|
|310||Dmitry Matveev||KR Motorsport Srl||Kart Republic||RU|
|383||Tyler McIntyre||MottazSport||Alonso Kart||Palmetto FL||US|
|387||Christian Miles||Racelab||TB Kart||Paloma IL||US|
|303||Matheus Morgatto||PSL Karting||Birel ART||BR|
|306||Frankie Mossman||Mike Doty Racing||Tony Kart||Newport Beach CA||US|
|318||Lucas Nanji||Trinity Karting Group||Kart Republic||CA|
|364||Blake Nash||Nash Motorsportz||EOS||Riverside CA||US|
|350||Thomas Nepveu||KR Motorsport Srl||Kart Republic||CA|
|302||Ryan Norberg||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||Orlando FL||US|
|351||Timothy Pernod||PSL Karting||Birel ART||CA|
|333||Peyton Phillips||Ryan Perry Motorsport||Tony Kart||Austin TX||US|
|313||Diego Ramos||PSL Karting||Birel ART||Davenport FL||BR|
|389||Brett Revetta||Rolison Performance Group||Tony Kart||El Cajon CA||US|
|324||Ernesto Rivera||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||MX|
|357||Tyler Ruth||Ruthless Karting||Exprit||Glendale AZ||US|
|340||Adam Rylance||Mike Doty Racing||Kosmic||Arvada CO||US|
|307||Max Taylor||Rolison Performance Group||Kosmic||Hoboken NJ||US|
|388||Nicholas Terlecki||Hotz Driver Development||OTK||Gilberts IL||US|
|314||Maximo Toviggino||Zanella Racing||Tony Kart||AR|
|316||Dylan Ulinder||Catalyst Driver Development||Italkart||CA|
|320||Travis Varney||Forward Direction Motorsports||CompKart||Highlands Ranch CO||US|
|377||Jesus Vasquez Jr.||P1 / Nash Motorsportz||Tony Kart||Rancho Cucamonga CA||US|
|363||Ryan Vincent||Nash Motorsportz||EOS||San Diego CA||US|
|358||Ziming Wang||Team BBR||Parolin||CA|