BATAVIA, NY-Cory Reeves ended the WKA/George Kugler Manufacturer's Cup Series Presented by Bridgestone season with three wins during the Matt- Con/Abbale Builders Nationals August 22-24 at Batavia International Motorsports Park in Batavia,...
BATAVIA, NY-Cory Reeves ended the WKA/George Kugler Manufacturer's Cup Series Presented by Bridgestone season with three wins during the Matt- Con/Abbale Builders Nationals August 22-24 at Batavia International Motorsports Park in Batavia, NY where 240-racers entered. Two of the Franklin, WI based Switch Racing Engines powered Margay kart pilot's wins clinch him national titles; with divisionals still to be factored in it's too close to call. If he earns a third national championship he will be the series 2003 Triple Crown winner his goal since the season began.
"Getting the Triple Crown was one of my goals and it's very important to me," Reeves stated, "everyone who's the best has won a Triple Crown."
Reeves began his final effort in that quest by winning Saturday's Intense Karting Imports HPV-Lite for that championship. He was second fastest qualifier with a 31.798 seconds lap around the eight-turn nearly 3/4-mile road course. Caleb Loniewski was t fastest qualifier at 31.789 seconds. Reeves topped Loniewski in the 10-lap Pre-Final by 0.206 seconds.
When the Final's green flag waved they took their battle for the front way ahead of a falling field with Reeves trailing Loniewski. "I tried to get by him (Loniewski) in turn one probably four or five times," Reeves described. Once in the lead Reeves continued building on it as Cale Wyse worked past Loniewski for second. Wyse trailed Reeves under the checkered flag by 1.296 seconds followed closely by Loniewski, Chad Jump and Troy Hintzsche for the top five.
"It was a good win," Reeves said. "The kart handled great, Kevin Nelson helped me with everything the motor and the chassis, driving and everything. I really owe a lot to him and my mom and my dad."
Later that day he capped a dicey battle with Jason Marignoni in Lonici Rental Group Yamaha Senior Sportsman for that national championship. Reeve's machine was the fastest in qualifying turning in a 32.836 seconds effort followed by Marignoni who produced a 33.022 seconds lap. Reeves beat him by 1.343 seconds in the Prep-Final and then trailed him in the Final's first few laps. As they battled nose-to-tail Reeves tried to work by him at the end of the front straightaway where he finally passed him. From there Reeves went unchallenged to the finish where he was 1.411 seconds ahead of Marignoni.
"It was really tight, but I finally got him (Marignoni), he slipped a little, but he raced me clean and then he didn't offer me anything," Reeves said.
In Sunday's UEMSI HPV Heavy Reeves earned the victory over outside pole winner Adam Zaremba by 1.751. Reeves was the fastest qualifier at 32.003 seconds and Pre-Final winner over Zaremba by just 0.196 seconds.
"I could hear them behind me the whole time and I just kept thinking drive consistently and put a couple of good laps together and then I looked back and they were about two kart lengths behind," Reeves said. "We adjusted a few things because it felt tight in the Pre-Final. My dad does so much work he just does everything and Kevin got the tune-ups right and I just drove it."
Four others produced double wins. Canadian competitor Daniel Morad came to town with a 38-point lead over Illinois based Birel factory pilot Kyle Rahal in 80cc Shifter Junior and left a national champion. Morad, also a Birel kart pilot, lead qualifying with a 30.624 seconds lap reaching 82.288 mph.
Rahal ruled the Pre-Finals. Saturday's by a mire 0.040 seconds, Sunday's by 1.629-seconds. But when it counted Morad's Swede Tech Racing powered kart was the machine with a 0.568 seconds advantage over Rahal in J&J Biesse Kart 80cc Shifter Junior 1 Saturday followed Sunday with a more comfortable 1.764 seconds victory margin in Abbale/Lee Motorsports 80cc Shifter Final-2 .
In their first battle, after closely trailing Rahal nose-to-tail for 19- laps, Morad made his move on the final lap. "I got off to a good start, but I was outside front row and he passed me going into corner one and then my kart came in about halfway through the race," said the 13-year-old double winner. "Then I started catching him perfectly tenth-by-tenth and towards the end I passed him (Rahal) and on the last lap and then he didn't come near me at the end. At the beginning the kart was a bit loose and halfway through it started coming in so I started catching him next to the last lap. This was my first race wit h the Swede Tech motor and it performed good and my tuner did a good job so I'm happy."
Sunday was almost a repeat performance with Rahal getting the early jump and then surrendering it to Morad on the final lap. "The kart came in a few laps ago so I could make my move," Morad described, "On the last lap going into the first corner he almost hit me and he got off the track a little and I just cruised on to victory lane after that. My mechanic, Paul, setup the kart so it would come in at the end and that's how I caught him."
Camden, OH based Yellow Fin Racing Engines powered Energy kart pilot Scott Rettich collected a couple of wins and a national championship. Adam Zarembe, a Wilson kart driver, was the fastest of nine qualifiers in Laukaitis Racing Yamaha Heavy with a 32.383 seconds 77.819 mph lap, but at the Pre-Final and Final finishes he trailed Rettich by 0.387 and 0.141 seconds respectfully.
Rettich grabbed the Final's early led from the pole and was challenged first from Jacques Dresang then Zaremba. "This was a great race, I really had to fight for that one," Rettich reported adding, "It wasn't the fastest kart, but it was fast in the right places. I had great horsepower and the kart handled great, it was awesome."
Winning that Sunday's MY-CHRON Spec 100 wasn't as easy. Although he was the fastest qualifier at 32.588 seconds, a broken chain during the Pre- Final's second lap put him at the back of the pack when the Final race went green. Pre-Final winner Ben McCallum shot into the Final's early lead with James Cardillo challenging his lead from second. Meanwhile Rettich threaded his way through the field. He took second just after the field got the five laps to go signal and closed in on McCallum. Next time around as they raced down the turn four hill heading into the straightaway Rettich raced by McCallum for the lead, which he stretched out in the final laps.
"I just made a charge to the front and it was good up hill and down the straightaway and it was great. I passed him down the straightaway up the hill," Rettich said. "The kart was great, it was real consistent."
Profile Racing Engines powered BRM kart pilot Brian Jacobsen, of Lombard, IL, bagged both ICC Shifter Pre-Finals and Finals. Saturday his teammate Jamie Sieracki chased him across the stripe in Streeter Super Stands ICC Shifter 1's races first by 2.515 seconds and then by an even larger 4.657 seconds margin at the Final's finish.
"It was kind of hairy at first my teammate Jamie Sieracki got me on the start and I knew Pecarari was on me and we're tight in points so I didn't have much time to wait to get by Jamie so about four laps into it I had to make some moves and made it stick and pulled away from that point," Jacobsen said. "I had a great kart and my dad built a great motor. I'd like to thank Profile Racing Engines, Target Distributing and Nervosa."
Sunday Robbie Pecorari was behind him in Romeo Motorsports ICC Shifter-2's Pre-Final by 4.786 and trailing him by 4.861 seconds across the Final's stripe was Alan Adams. Pecorari had trouble on the start allowing Jacobsen to get the jump on him and own every lap from there.
"I was kind of worried there and I was kind of happy Robbie (Pecorari) was breaking down at the start because I though he would be kind of tough I thought," Jacobsen admitted. "As soon as I got the jump I knew he'd try to cut me down a little bit, but I got enough lead on the start that I was just gone from that point and I never looked back too much. I'd like to thank Profile Racing Engines and my dad, BRM Racing, RLV and Nervosa."
Joey King claimed wins in JN Racing Formula Yamaha Junior and Matt-Con Services Corp. Yamaha Junior SuperCan. Saturday the Silis, IL based 15- year-old double winner trailed pole winner Tony Jump, who turned a top- qualifying lap of 31.535 seconds, by 0.172 seconds in the Pre-Final. He later avenged himself in the Final with a close 0.318 seconds edge over Bumper-to-Bumper backed Ringwood, NJ based racer Thomas Hartensveld.
"I just got a good start there and luckily I got out in the lead on the first turn and form there I just tried not to make any mistakes, but I made a couple of them," King admitted. "It was a good race. The engine was working good thanks to S&S Racing Engines. I also want to thank Margay karts and my mom and dad."
Sunday King took everything in Yamaha Junior SuperCan starting with a 31.793 seconds top-qualifying lap. He beat Hartensveld in the Pre-Final with a comfortable 2.206 seconds margin and then led Jump by 1.401 seconds at the Final's end.
"The kart was working pretty good the whole time. As soon as I got out there in the lead I just tried not to make any mistakes like yesterday and I don't think I made any," King credited. "The engine was working good and I want to thank Curt from S&S Racing Engines and Brian and Keith and all the guys from Margay and my mom and dad and Ian Rahal."
A full report on all of the action from Batavia International Motorsports Park along with more photos will appear in an upcoming edition of WKA's Karting Scene. To subscribe visit the WKA web site at www.worldkarting.com or call the office at 740.455.1606.
-by Bruce C. Walls, guest writer