Race Day Report (3/16/19)
KA 100 Junior kart race comes down to final moments
Top two karts cross finish line side-by-side
In the midst of several dominating performances on the kart track Saturday at the Atlanta Motorsports Park, the KA 100 class was the notable exception where a last-lap pass resulted in a winning margin of just 0.076 seconds.
None of the top three drivers in the KA 100 junior classification could gain even an inch of separation the entire race as it almost seemed like the karts of Aiden Levy, Raiden Nicol and Mateo Rubio-Luengo were connected going through the turns. The racing was that tight.
The lack of separation from the top three drivers did provide plenty of opportunities to catch a draft and Levy, Nichol and Rubio-Luengo took full advantage of that with all three taking a turn out in front.
No one’s lead was safe, however, as the top three positions changed after every lap. The longest stint out in front was by Rubio-Luengo who took the lead in Lap 3 and carried it until Lap 7 before he was passed by Nichol the following lap.
From Lap 9 until the white flag Levy and Rubio-Luengo were the top two drivers with Levy leading five of the final seven laps. After leading a lap, Nichol slotted himself into third position, staying on the leaders while waiting for another opportunity to make a move to the front.
The running order for the last four laps was Levy, Rubio-Luengo and Nichol.
That was until the final stretch before the finish line where Rubio-Luengo made his move around Levy. With Rubio-Luengo now slotted directly in front of Levy, it looked like Rubio-Luengo would take the checkered flag, but Nichol wasn’t done just yet. The young driver jutted out from behind Levy, making the pass into second place with his eyes set on first.
As the checkered flag waved, Rubio-Luengo and Nichol crossed the finish line side-by-side. No one knew who won until the times came through to race control showing that Rubio-Luengo was just barely able to hold off a hard-charging Nichol by 0.076 seconds to take the win in the KA 100 junior class with Levy finishing in third place.
In the KA 100 senior class, Erickson Evans came out victorious followed by Justin Heus in second and Matheus Prates in third place.
Alyssa Vascocu completes dominate day in LO206 Cadet kart but not without a challenge
The LO206 class appeared as if it would be dominated by Alyssa Vascocu after she lapped the entire field of both cadet and junior karts in the pre-final race to set the starting grid for the final race.
That, however, was not the case as Sidney Robinson gave Vascocu all she could handle in the final race.
After seeming all day like Vascocu had a kart that couldn’t be caught, Robinson did just that taking over the lead halfway through the final race.
Despite competing in different classifications, Robinson (LO206 Junior) and Vascocu (LO206 Cadet) both wanted the prestige of the overall win as the two went back and forth over the final stretch of the race.
With three laps to go, Vascocu regained the lead from Robinson but Robinson kept fighting hard to get it back. While pushing to make the pass on the back-portion of the track, Robinson spun out his kart which not only secured the win for Vascocu but saw Robinson fall back to third place in the junior class finishing order.
Following Vascocu in the LO206 cadet class was Samuel Avrutsky in second place with Nicholas Daniell rounding out the top three.
Capturing the win in the LO206 junior class was Emerson Nogueira Jr. with Clayton Cooper in the runner-up position and Robinson finishing in third place.
Nicholas Lefferdo runs perfect race to secure LO206 Senior/Master win
The LO206 Senior and Master class race was not quite as excited as the Cadet/Junior race but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t some close racing.
As a matter of fact, Nicholas Lefferdo was pushed to the limit by Zach Holden from the moment the green flag dropped. It was Lefferdo and Holden 1-2 the entire race. Holden was right on Lefferdo’s bumper, but Lefferdo hit his marks on every turn on all 15 laps never giving Holden the window he needed to make the pass.
John Nichols came through in the third spot following Lefferdo and Holden to complete the podium for the LO206 senior class.
The Master class wasn’t without its excitement either as Matt Lassiter was awarded the win following a penalty on Hefner Hank for running Lassiter off the track on the final lap.
The penalty moved Hank into second place with Bobby Hill finishing third in the LO206 master class.
TaG Senior/Master class crashes its way to the finish
The TaG Senior and Master class had a very eventful day to say the least. During the pre-final race to set the starting order for the final race, at least four cars were involved in on track incidents, the worst of which involved a wreck that eventually led to a blown engine from the kart driven by Bryan Hart.
Hart’s kart stalled on the track which led to the only full-course yellow of the day.
Several karts were unable to compete in the final due to the carnage of the pre-final and while the final race was far tamer, the kart driven by Mike Conrad was forced to retire the final race via a black flag after continuing to race despite losing his bumper.
Conrad was a member of the TaG master class which was won by Donald Davis by virtue of being the only kart to complete the entire race.
The TaG senior class had a more traditional finish with Max Muir leading all 15 laps to secure the victory. Erickson Evans was able to add to his win in the KA 100 senior class with a second-place finish in the TaG senior class while Jason Leslie came home in third place.
Christian Foster goes wire-to-wire in TaG Cadets
The TaG cadet class race was a wire-to-wire victory for Christian Foster while Nicholas Daniell and Vincent Capitillo were left to battle it out for second place.
That second-place battle was one to watch, however, as after trailing Daniell the entire race, Capitillo was able to make the pass on Lap 12 into second place. But after finishing third in the LO206 cadet class, Daniell wasn’t about to settle for another bronze medal.
With two laps to go, Daniell made the move on Capitillo to put himself back into second position. Capitillo made it exciting down the stretch but Daniell was able to hold on to add a silver medal to pair with the bronze medal he won in earlier in the day.
Other notable results:
John Avrutsky captures gold in Comer Kid Kart. Avrutsky takes the win in the youngest classification with Katelynn Newell and Wright Jones finishing second and third respectively.
Ray Shaffer wins Pro Concessions race. Johann Mace finishes in the runner-up position while Bhanu Yedla rounds out the podium.
Jason Bane is victorious in Shifter Class. In a race shortened to 10 laps via driver discretion, Bane finishes ahead of Joshua Marsh while Angus Hunt earns a third-place finish.
Author: Colin Ochs, Sports Writer for Forsyth County News