Ozz Negri Joins Kayla Graham Racing for SuperNationals 17 November, 2010 (LAS VEGAS)--Kayla Graham Racing will hit the biggest karting event of the year at full speed after announcing that Rolex Sports Car Series pilot Ozz Negri has joined the...
Ozz Negri Joins Kayla Graham Racing for SuperNationals
17 November, 2010 (LAS VEGAS)--Kayla Graham Racing will hit the biggest karting event of the year at full speed after announcing that Rolex Sports Car Series pilot Ozz Negri has joined the team for the 14th annual SuperNationals event in Las Vegas. Negri will pilot the No. 60 KartMini machine in the TAG Senior Kart class. The "SuperNats" event has traditionally brought the biggest and brightest from not only the karting world, but also from the global motorsports community. With over 460 entries disputing titles within 11 different classes, the 14th edition of the race is set to extend that tradition once again.
While he is best known for his race-winning drives in the Daytona Prototype ranks and work as a factory test driver, Negri first burst on the scene as a karter winning four Brazilian Karting Championships. With a sold-out entry of 80 entries in Supernats' TaG Senior Kart class, Negri not only steps into one of the largest classes competing during the event, but also one that is anticipated to be one of the most competitive.
"This event is the biggest kart race in the US--not just in size but also in competition and stature," said Negri. "Drivers from all over the world, established racers like me, and all the top karters from around the world will be there. I think nine world karting champions are going to be there. So that is a huge attraction for me to go up against these guys. And, to have the chance to do it properly is something that I've never had before."
Doing it properly is exactly the opportunity that's on offer for Negri as he joins a team like KGR. The chance to run with a top team in karts had eluded Negri in his karting efforts going back to his native Brazil, as his speed and success earned him support but didn't have the resources to go all the way.
"In Brazil back then, if you won the National Championship, the CBA-(Brazilian Confederation Karting) would pay for your trip to Europe to go race in the World Championships. But you had to pay for the seat and to race, so I never got the chance to do that. So this is kind of my opportunity to make up for it because not getting to go has always kind of been in the back of my mind."
For KGR, the opportunity to campaign a driver of Negri's speed and profile at the biggest event of the year was one that could not be missed, and the organization has high hopes for the event.
"I've seen Ozz in action, and I firmly think that he's simply one of the best out there," said KGR principal John Graham. "There are some very big names in IndyCar or NASCAR that I think Ozz would blow away in a kart. So we are very excited that he's going to be representing Kayla Graham Racing at an event like SuperNats. It's some of the fiercest competition I think that exists anywhere in racing, and to be successful here takes incredible preparation, great equipment, and of course some amazing speed. We think Ozz is going to be a key part of that combination, and we've been working very hard to be as ready as we can."
Negri, who in addition to his work for Michael Shank Racing, is also the North American importer for Mini Kart. So the weekend offers the chance to show what his products are capable of as well as generating useful information for the development of future models.
"I've had other chances to go to Supernats, but it was never the right combination," said Negri. "This is an absolutely first-class operation that John has put together. And that's another reason why I'm so excited about this effort. Just like anything in motor racing, it takes the right combination of everything--people, equipment, support--to be successful. And racing for KGR is, for me, the way to go. John (Graham- KGR Team Principal) is very serious about this effort. He's put everything in place for us to be successful, and as a racer that is very important, and its something I've not had before in karting so I'm just counting down the days for."
Negri, who recently completed his first triathlon in Miami, has established a stout reputation for both his on-track strength and his unending preparations and the high-profile karting outing will also provide another channel for him to keep pushing his physical conditioning to the already impressive limits.
"I'm so motivated, I'm just counting down the days. I always enjoy driving karts, it's a big part of my and John's (Pew-Rolex co-driver) training. But this is going to be something different, very special. And for me as a driver, it's great thing to add to my training as a driver. I'm past the age of doing it, but the speed is still there! So I will try to do my best and just enjoy it as much as I can. During the year, we drive under a lot of pressure. It's our job. But this will be different. There is no pressure. I'm going there to do what I love to do and drive the kart, so I'm very excited about it. Of course, I'm going for the win, no question! But if we can get a top ten or even a little bit better, that would be very good in this event."