Report and Photos By: Saskatoon Grand Prix
For the 14th year the Saskatoon Kart Racers held their annual Grand prix. Originating on the downtown streets of Saskatoon.
The Grand Prix was moved to Martensville Speedway, SKR’s new facility, when it was built 10 years ago, and has been going strong ever since. 6 years ago the WCC was created with Saskatoon and SKR’s Grand Prix date as one of the 3 scheduled stops.
2013 saw the WCC moved to a 1 weekend event like Nationals to Warburg, AB. That didn’t stop The Saskatoon Kart Racers (SKR) from pursuing the tradition, history, and the 14th annual Saskatoon Grand Prix!
Not only did they pursue the event, they decided to add CASH prizes along with the trophie presentations. And add in a wild card draw!! Match a pre determined best lap time with your best lap from Sundays final and you win $2500!!
The weekend went as well as anyone could have hoped! The weather was incredible, Sunny, Hot, no mosquitoes, low winds, temperatures were in the 30’s, clear skies and Sunny!
The entries were a little lower than hoped for, some racers had commented that it was likely due to SKR posting information late into the season. There were entries from Edmonton, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg and Saskatoon of course. The racing was incredible, there were lap records broken, and some hotly contested battles.
Classes run were Briggs Senior/Masters, Briggs Junior I & II, Rotax Jr, Rotax Sr., and there was even a few DD2’s that ran on Sunday.
The format was a 2 day event (Saturday/Sunday) with the track open for testing Thursday & Friday.
Tires (all classes) were as per ASN rules but regulated to 1 set for both days! So tire management was essential! This kept the costs down and provided some good racing.
Points for trophies and cash prizes were combined pre-final / final for both days. So not only tire management but also consistency in finishes were the goal.
The biggest class and competition was the Briggs senior class. The Top 4 drivers were Brayden Donkervoort, Ayrton Triolo, Matthew Shirley, and Ty Campbell. Saturday morning saw Ayrton take the fastest lap with the rest not far… Qualifying changed a bit with 3 breaking the lap record! The top 3 were separated by a mere 6/1000th’s all breaking the lap record simultaneously. This was the prelude to a 4 way bumper to bumper contest for 2 days….
Saturday saw Brayden take the honors, Sunday was Brayden again with Ayrton in 2nd coming from last place due to a DNf in the prefinal! Setting fastest lap by 2 tenths along the way. Overall points were; Brayden Donkervoort 1st 178, Ty campbell 2nd 167, Matthew Shirley 3rd 163 and Ayrton a mere 5 points back for 4th 158 with a DNF. John Kwong rounded out the top 5 with 156.
Briggs Junior 2 saw AJ Morrison Dominate all weekend. AJ took pole and the wins leading all laps straight through the weekend. He was tuned and coached by Ayrton Triolo and the two of them definitely had the weekends setup to chase! AJ in only his second season of racing was smooth and consistent running within a tenth of his Saturday qualifying times straight through to Sundays final.
AJ Morrison, Baden Connor, Mike Clow
Junior 1 Briggs was an exciting class as we saw a lot of new young faces. Some barely past their rookie status. There were a lot of smiling kids in this group having a lot of fun on and off the track.
Wyatt Gulash, Hayley Gulash, Tyler Kozma, Jacob Waddell, Dylan Spendelow
Rotax Senior saw Kyle Shields dominate the weekend leading from pole Saturday straight through the weekend.
Kyle Shields, Dale Kerenyi, Blair Kerenyi, John Kwong, Garret Briton
Rotax junior had a good battle between Tristan Merke and Colton McCaughlan who actually tied for overall weekend points and it was Tristan’s qualifying that edged her into the 1st place win!!
Tristan Merke, Colton McCaughan, Andrew Kerenyi, Tanner Laliberte, Zachary lapinski
SKR is committed to continuing this tradition and building for the future, therefore we are announcing the 2014 15th Annual Saskatoon Grand Prix will be on and in much the same format as this year. So mark your calendars, plan to be there! It promises to be the biggest event in Western Canadian karting!
Same cash prizes, same 2-day format, same tire rules!
Thank you to all that participated it was a great weekend!
See you next year.