SRFKC Shnnonville preview

Sunoco Sunday at Shannonville. SRFKC heads to Ontario's biggest karting weekend. TORONTO, ON - Ontario's biggest karting event is set to kick off this weekend (August 2-4) with the traditional GrandNationals at Shannonville. The event is...

Sunoco Sunday at Shannonville.
SRFKC heads to Ontario's biggest karting weekend.

TORONTO, ON - Ontario's biggest karting event is set to kick off this weekend (August 2-4) with the traditional GrandNationals at Shannonville. The event is expected to draw over 400 entries, and the inaugural visit Sunoco Ron Fellows Karting Championship will be a big part of the GrandNationals as rounds 7 and 8 will be the headline events on Sunday Aug. 4.

Racing will start on Friday, Aug. 2 for the first of the OKRA (Ontario Kart Racing Association) classes and the Canada Seniors will lead off the SRFKC classes on Saturday Aug 3 at 12:30 pm for round 7. Gold Kart's Kyle Herder is leading the Canada Senior championship with an impressive record of five wins in six rounds, but Herder's true speed will be put to the test on Saturday as Shannonville is all about drafting. Herder will need some 'Golden' friends if he hopes to keep his win streak going. Birel's Stefano Romano, Gold's Rob Oakman and Aaron de Heus will all be in the hunt for the win.

There could also be some history made in the Canada Senior ranks. Birels' Juliana Chiovitti - coming off strong finishes in rounds 5 and 6 - will be looking to be the first female to win an SRFKC round. Chiovitti has won before at Shannonville, and there's little doubt that her red #3 will be at the head of pack on Saturday afternoon.

Canada Junior is set to go on 'Sunoco Sunday' as the highly motivated class take to Shannonville's one-kilometre track. At the previous rounds in Goodwood, it was a four-kart battle for the lead. In both Goodwood rounds, the eventual winner wasn't leading as the pack exited the last turn on the final lap. The Shannonville rounds could produce the same kind of race.

Look for MBA's Justin Mascoll, Birel's Daniel Morad or Travis Walker to take top spot, or will Gold's Pearce Herder win the last lap strategic battle for the two wins that are up for grabs? The Canada Junior championship is a wide open battle between all four drivers, with only a few points separating the class leaders.

"I can't wait for Shannonville," said MBA's Mascoll. "We normally run good there, and you have to have a drafting partner. It will be a great race."

Formula Junior and Formula Senior could see first-time winners. In Junior, Birel's Mike Meier is coming off a season best performance at Goodwood and in Senior Birel's Nathan Brown and Juliana Chiovitti have a history of running well at Shannonville. Both Formula-class leaders faced tough decisions earlier in the week. For the first time, SKUSA (Superkarts USA) scheduled a round of the ProMoto tour on the same weekend as the traditional GrandNationals.

"It really depended on how we did at Goodwood," said Formula Senior-class leader MBA's Matt Champagne. "We left there with two wins, which really helped us in the championship. Missing Shannonville will hurt us, but we've done all we can to give Hurricane Racing the best chance to bounce back in the final two rounds at Goodwood. It's tough missing these rounds after all Sunoco and Ron Fellows are doing for Canadian karting."

Formula Junior First Kart drivers Robert Wickens and James Hinchcliffe are also facing the same tough decision.

The objective of the SRFKC is to help foster a professional environment for kart drivers; help create a positive attitude towards appearance, conduct and discipline; help foster the employment of the best practices for the safe and fair running of competitions; and help kart drivers to move up the racing ladder to automobile racing.

Many of the top karters from Ontario and other provinces are scheduled to compete in four classes (Canada Junior, Canada Senior, Formula Junior and Formula Senior). The Formula Senior class will feature F125cc shifter karts, which are capable of exceeding 100 mph. Both Formula classes will make Formula 1 style standing starts.

At the end of the season, two drivers will be selected from each of the four classes plus the two drivers from the ASN Canadian National Championships will be invited to a one-day evaluation test at the Bridgestone/Firestone Racing Academy at Mosport, provided they are 16 years of age prior to the date of the test.

Out of those 10 drivers, two will earn a full scholarship to the 2003 Bridgestone/Firestone Toronto Star Wheels F2000 racing series.

For directions and information on Shannonville Motorsports Park, visit www.shannonville.com

-srfkc-

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About this article
Series Kart
Drivers Ron Fellows , Juliana Chiovitti , Kyle Herder , Robert Wickens , James Hinchcliffe , Travis Walker , Daniel Morad