FirstKart.com scores three victories and eight podiums on the way to two championships
Guelph, ON. -- March 8, 2006 -- The FirstKart.com race team scored three victories and eight podiums this past weekend in the final round of the 2006 Florida Winter Tour (FWT) in Ocala, FL. Scoring victories was senior driver Eric Gerrits and junior competitors Kevin Montieth and Brett Smrz.
In the headline Pro Shifter division, Floridian Chris Friel was able to score two sixth place results. The up and coming driver showed the speed to run with the front guys but some bad luck took him out of contention for the win. Brad LeLiever and Matt Pritiko were also in attendance both running their first events of the '06 season. LeLiever finished 12th and 13th while Pritiko was 13th and 15th.
'05 Canadian National Champion Eric Gerrits was in attendance and scored two podium results including Sunday's Rotax Senior victory. The win, and Saturday's second place result, solidified Gerrits second place result in the overall points championship. Gerrits will now turn his attention to the Stars of Karting Championship where he will contend in the Spec Racer class for the FirstKart.com race team.
Idaho's Brett Smrz. Smrz was able to score one victory but four podium results on his way to double championships this past weekend. Smrz finished second in Saturday's JICA action but was able to take the victory on Sunday. In Rotax Junior, Smrz finished 5th and 3rd and garnered enough points to take the title. After the event, Smrz was recognized for being the first double championship winner in the same season at the Florida Winter Tour.
Stouffville, Ontario's Kevin Montieth had a career weekend at the Florida Winter Tour as he was able to take his first victory outside Ontario. Montieth made a last lap desperation pass to take the checkers in Saturday's competition. Montieth was able to back up the Saturday victory with a strong 4th place finish right behind the leaders.
Jameson Pritiko competed in his first Florida Winter Tour event aboard the First Kart chassis and had a decent run placing 13th and 24th. The Canadian resident was running inside the top ten for much of the weekend before incidents took him out of contention.
James Moriarty was the FirstKart.com entry in the Masters Shifter class and was able to score a strong 6th place result in Saturday's action. In Sunday's pre-final, the Texan was with the leaders finishing in P3 but was forced to skip the final to catch a flight.
The FirstKart.com race team will be back in action in this weekend at the second round of the World Karting Association Manufactures Cup being held at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, NC. From there, the team will head across the country to the Stars of Karting opener in Norman, OK the following weekend.