TEAM ALUMINOS CASHES IN AT SKUSA SUPERNATIONALS XIII WITH VICTORY Dyer scores win in S3 as Aluminos squad produces strong results in five categories LAS VEGAS, NV -- Victory is always sweet but when it comes at the largest karting event to...
TEAM ALUMINOS CASHES IN AT SKUSA SUPERNATIONALS XIII WITH VICTORY
Dyer scores win in S3 as Aluminos squad produces strong results in five categories
LAS VEGAS, NV -- Victory is always sweet but when it comes at the largest karting event to ever take place in North American karting, it tastes even sweeter. The Team Aluminos squad celebrated the Superkarts! USA SuperNationals XIII in victory lane following the final day of action on the November 18-22 event outside the Rio Hotel and Casino. Lead driver and team coach Tom Dyer piloted an Aluminos entry to the top of the podium in the competitive S3 category to help celebrate the two year anniversary for the Northern California-based operation. Along with Dyer, the rest of the Aluminos squad was on top of their game and nearly took home additional victories and podium celebrations.
The S3 division saw fifty four entries in the class with three Aluminos drivers in the hunt for the SuperNats title. Dyer led the way for the squad in qualifying as he posted the quickest lap of the timed session - 42.194 and earning the Oakley sponsored "Bomb" pole award. Brad Dunford was next in the Aluminos lineup as he was seventh overall. Last year's race leader Steven Reasoner ended the session in 25th after a tough session. Needing to post solid results in the heat races to secure a strong starting spot for the main, Dyer went on to post two wins and a second place in the three heat races to secure the pole position in the final. Contact in Dunford's second heat cost him a possible top-five starting position after running fourth and fifth in the other heat races, slotting into the 13th starting spot on the grid for the final. Reasoner recovered nicely as he increased his speed and finishing position each time on track to score results of 13th, 11th and 11th in the heats to improve up to the 19th grid position to start the main.
Dyer grabbed the holeshot and was pacing the field in the early goings until being challenge for the lead. After a couple laps of jostling for position, Dyer reestablished control of the race and began to put a gap between him and his challengers. Lap by lap, Dyer ran a consistent pace allowing him to drive away from the rest of the field as his rivals continued to fight it out for the runner-up spot. At the line, Dyer earned his second SuperNats S3 title by over three-seconds. Coming from 13th, Dunford, who was a front runner throughout the event, was on the charge again. In the early going, he quickly broke into the top-10. From there, he gained ground on the fight for the runner-up spot, catching the tail end of the group and grabbing two spots before the checkered fell to place a respectable seventh. After a slow start Reasoner worked into a consistent race-mode to regain his lost positions from a chaotic start while posting front running lap times. Needing better track position at the start to gain more spots Reasoner came home 15th in the order at the finish - nine positions better from a year ago.
Aluminos nearly had a second victory to take home from Vegas in the growing and competitive S4 division. Kyle Hathcox was on his game from the beginning as one of the early front runners. In the timed qualifying session, Hathcox was slotted into third just under a tenth of a second off of the pole time. Riding that momentum, Hathcox was in the thick of things for the opening heat win, taking over the point with just two laps to go to secure the win. In the second heat, Hathcox held his ground finishing third, but a slip-up in the final heat as he finished sixth cost him the pole position for the main event.
The 25-lap feature was an intense battle with a number of drivers holding strong in the lead group. A determined Hathcox took over the lead on lap 13 and fought off numerous advances until losing the top spot with three laps to go. At the checkered, Hathcox settled for an impressive and close second place finish to put Aluminos on the podium. The main event also was highlighted by two other Aluminos drivers. After tough heat flights, Phil Dunford and Peter Workum started 19th and 20th respectively. Knifing their way through the field, Workum ended up 8th in the final tally after posting his fastest laps of the race in the final few circuits. Dunford, making his first SuperNats start, advanced as well to place a solid 12th.
"The results in Vegas speak volumes for the Stock Moto Arrive and Drive packages we provide," stated Aluminos owner Rob Soares. "Our engine specialist George Tavares has put together a solid engine program that keeps our motors running at their best and the driver coaches did their job providing each of our drivers the best grooming for an unknown track. To have six drivers finish in the top-15 in S3 and S4 against nearly 100 other drivers is amazing and shows we have the right package in place."
Five drivers contested the G1 category in Vegas with Fernando Diaz and Sergio Machado leading the way early on. Diaz established himself as threat for the victory as a consistent top-five runner throughout the event. The ProKart Challenge West Coast Shootout winner started the main event from the third position. Staying with and pacing the leaders he was well on his way to a podium finish until on lap 18 an engine problem thwarted his progress and he pulled off track ending his strong run. Veteran Machado led the way after Diaz retired, placing seventh as the top Aluminos driver. Denmark's Michael Zakrisen and Henrik Hajman enjoyed their second trip to the SuperNationals with the Aluminos squad, placing 21st and 28th respectively. Californian Jim Holloway experienced his first trip with the NorCal based operation, gaining and learning a lot over the course of the weekend. An early retirement on lap 10 due to contact in the opening laps ended his main event race prematurely.
One of the most storied and stacked fields ever assembled for the SuperPro division competed at this year's SuperNats with Aluminos fielding three drivers. New Zealander Daniel Bray was in the top-20 of a field of 44 drivers that included numerous former and current world champions, including seven-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher. A DNS in the opening heat race hurt Bray's main event starting position, but the Kiwi battled and drove fiercely to finish a solid 16th in his first SuperPro start. Denmark's Michael Bo Andersen made his second start in the SuperPro division finishing a respectable 23rd overall after a solid run during the heat races. Aluminos welcomed newcomer Brazilian Joao Jardim to the team for the first time as he made his North American debut at this year's SuperNats. With a tough qualifying session and experience building heat race rounds under his belt he stayed determined. Working with the Aluminos team he found extra speed in the main event picking up the pace and finishing in 18th, just two spots behind Bray in the final to complete his first SuperPro race. With a last minute cancelation, Andrew Vargas was a late entry into the SuperPro division aboard a new CRG machine prepared by Team Aluminos. Succumbing to two DNFs in the heat races, Vargas worked himself to a 28th place finish in the main event.
The lone TaG driver was S4 pilot Peter Workum competing in the TaG Masters class and doing double duty on the week. The Arizona driver was inside the top-15 for most of the event with the exception of a DNF in the second heat race. Starting 16th in the main event, Workum ended up 14th in his first TaG Masters start at the SuperNats.