SKUSA: PKC-N: Series prepares for final half of season

ProKart Challenge North hits the halfway mark of inaugural season New Superkarts! USA Northern California region building momentum for second half of '08 SONOMA, CA (July 4, 2008) -- Since it was announced at the beginning of the calendar...

ProKart Challenge North hits the halfway mark of inaugural season
New Superkarts! USA Northern California region building momentum for second half of '08

SONOMA, CA (July 4, 2008) -- Since it was announced at the beginning of the calendar year, the Superkarts! USA ProKart Challenge North program has come very far in a short time. Three events are now in the books, and the series is currently preparing for the final three rounds at the Jim Russell International Karting Center at Infineon Raceway. The debut of the Northern California karting series has enjoyed consistent growth and the development of a loyal following that speaks volumes of how well the series will build into the future.

Heading back to the Jim Russell International Karting Center in just over a week, the Sonoma, California facility is fresh off hosting the largest PKC North race of the year with an event that utilized the 3/4-mile national configuration in the reverse direction. Because of that success, SKUSA President Tom Kutscher has decided to run two of the final three events in the reverse direction to keep things interesting. The upcoming event on July 12 will run reverse again (counter-clockwise), as will the season finale on September 13. Round #5, set for August 9, will run in the standard clockwise direction.

Another recent addition to the program was the introduction of the HPV-2 Junior division as part of the SKUSA ProKart Challenge North class line-up. With the success of the class at Round #3, PKC North officials have added the category to the regular program for the remainder of the year. Kutscher is also making final plans to include it as a class at this year's SuperNationals XII. "It's no secret that the major kart factories scout talent for next season's teams at the SuperNationals. Adding an HPV-2 Jr class is the next logical step in developing these young drivers in their professional careers. More info to come on these plans shortly."

At the halfway mark for PKC North, the top contenders for the class championships are now clearly identified. The TaG Senior division has boasted the highest entry counts of the year, and has the closest battle at the top as well. Just 54 points separate Jason Toft and Will Martindale as two of the top drivers in the NorCal area will continue their fight in Round #4, joined by Cameron Pringle and feature winners Alex Speed and Brett Buckwalter in the lead pack. Toft is also in a heated battle with Marc Elliott for the top spot in S3, as the two are separated by just 50 points. Cody Hodgson has a more comfortable 100-point gap over SoCal's Jacob Neal in S1, but the duo ran 1-2 at the recent PKC South event at CalSpeed with Neal taking the win, opening the door for a continued struggle.

When former TaG Masters point leader Rob Soares was forced to sit out Round #3 with a broken hand, Steve Elo assumed the top position over Jim Ferguson, with Soares now tied for third with Helmar Beregszaszy. Craig Corwin (G1), Matt Alcorn (S4), and Herman Ip (TaG Masters Light) have been perfect in the first three events in their respective classes, and will look to continue the streak in Round #4. However, the championships are still anyone's to take, as the final points standings in each class will be based on the best five of six events for each driver.

The racers in this championship chase are competing for more than $70,000 in prizes, thanks to Superkarts! USA and the Jim Russell Racing Drivers School. The package includes an array of prizes, including introductory courses in the JRRDS car program, performance tires, helmets and more. Also awarded will be three free race entries to the 2008 SKUSA SuperNationals in November, as well as a golden ticket to the event that includes entry, tires, and fuel. A new GP chassis courtesy of KLS Racing will also be given away, as well as one driver selected to run at the 2008 Granja Viana 500 in Sao Paulo, Brazil in November.

Friday night following the full day of practice on the reverse course for Round #4, ProKart Challenge officials will be providing a complimentary BBQ, sponsored by PanaVise, open to all racers who have participated in the practice and anyone who have purchased a pit pass. Scott Jeffery of MAACO-Santa Rosa will be on-hand as the BBQ chef.

-credit: www.prokartchallenge.com.

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