It was another hot day of action at the Sofina Foods US Open of Utah as racing continued in picturesque Tooele, Utah. All nine classes completed three rounds of heat races to go along with Friday’s heat to help set the grids for Sunday’s Final races at the second stop of the Us Open karting championship.
One manufacturer stood out among the rest on Saturday as the BirelART chassis from Team PSL Karting showed strength, topping the rankings in many of the categories. Canadian Jeff Kingsley found no troubles in Rotax DD2, sweeping the heat races by large margins. He was followed by his PSL teammate Alessandro Bizzotto. Another BirelART leads the DD2 Masters race too as Nathan Mauel is looking promising for his second victory of the season, ranking third overall of the DD2 drivers.
A second PSL Karting driver to sweep the heat races on Saturday was Oliver Askew in Rotax Senior. While he did win them all, Luke Selliken kept him on his toes, as the times are very close in the category. Kellen Ritter is third, followed by Walker Hess and Michael Michoff.
In Shifter, Kyle Kirkwood is showing well in his US Open debut with Team PSL, winning a pair of heats and ranking first overall. Nick Neri, Tyler Bennett and Sabre Cook are chasing him for the top spot of the podium and will line up for the Final in positions 2, 3 and 4. The Shifter Masters is a tight battle between Ryan Kinnear, Ryan Pool and Chris Jennings as they rank mid-pack in the Shfiter category.
Rotax Junior was mightily exciting Saturday. The first heat of the day saw nearly half the field get collected in a crash in the first corner after pole sitter Manuel Sulaiman was turned and it tallied many of the front-runners. Ryan Macdermid and Nick Brueckner benefitted to finish 1-2 while Sulaiman recovered to finish seventh. Heat two featured the same front two; only this time it was Brueckner taking the win. In the final race of the day, the excitement continued with a six-kart battle for the win where Sulaiman came out on top.
When the dust settled after four heat races, Macdermid will start on the pole for the Final with Sulaiman alongside. Jacob Gulick and Matthew Latifi fill out row two followed by Hannah Greenemeier and Mathias Ramirez. Brueckner will start seventh after being excluded from the final heat race in tech.
Diego LaRoque was unstoppable in Micro Max Saturday, posting a perfect record. Josh Pierson was close in the final heat and gave the leader a run for his money, but had to settle for second at the line. Next up in the rankings are Santiago Trisini, James Egozi and Jeremy Fletcher as BENIK Karts own positions 1, 3, 4 and 5.
Putting in a similar performance in Rotax Mini-Max, Tyler Gonzalez is looking good for another big win as he controlled each heat race. Jak Crawford followed Gonzalez throughout the day but just didn’t have enough to challenge the leader, but still earning a front row starting spot for Sunday.
Finally in Rotax Max Masters it’s another PSL Karting/BirelART driver on top as Jeremie Charon closed out the day with two heat wins to earn the pole-position for Sunday’s Final. Mike Rollison will join him on the front row with double heat winner Billy Cleavelan back in third after finding trouble in the final heat race.