It was a slow start to the day for the 35th annual Waterloo Regional Kart Club Oktoberfest Grand Prix as a morning rain shower soaked the circuit at Flamboro Speedway and delayed the start.
But once the sun returned and the drivers meeting was completed, it was all smooth sailing from there for Canada’s largest single-day four-cycle only karting event.
With nine classes on tap for the day, there was plenty of action on track as drivers completed Qualifying, a Prefinal and Final race to determine the winners who took home the very unique Oktoberfest trophies.
Collison Racing has taken home more than their fair share of Oktoberfest victories and the family history with deep roots in the WRKC club scored two more on Saturday. Jake Collison led the way in the Masters category, holding off a late charge by Brian Wilkinson, to add another to victory to his record books. About an hour later his daughter Ciarra followed her fathers footsteps, taking the victory in the Jr. Heavy class, leading the majority of the race before a last lap red flag sealed the victory.
The Junior Heavy race was an exciting one as Tyson Wassink led early until Collison made her move to the lead. Contact from Max Wright pushed Wassink wide a lap later and ended his chances of a win. A few laps later Wright attempted a pass for the lead on the inside of the main straight, but contact was made with Collison, to which Wright reacted in a very disrespectful manner, earning himself the black flag in the process. Collison then held off Peter Ditner and Aaron Turnbull before the red flag flew on the final lap when Tyler DiVenanzo went for a tumble. Thankfully he walked away.
The Senior Briggs class was a great show for the fans on site. The Briggs class is a special addition to the Oktoberfest GP and it didn’t disappoint. Austin Bisschop led the way for most of the final, initially ahead Josh Conquer and Davide Greco. Conquer was freight-trained with a couple laps left, opening up a chance to Michael Glaze to sneak into second. A bold move by Glaze on the final lap around the tower saw him made contact with Bisschop, holding up the two enough for Greco to sneak through and steal the win away while Bisschop held on for second, just ahead of Tyler Paquette, Glaze and David Miller as the lead seven all crossed within a second of the winner.
Bisschop also came home second in the Sr. Lite Final after a tough start saw him fall down from the pole-position to fourth. Fast laps through the middle of the race allowed Bisschop to close in on race leader Darren Dryden, but that was all he could manage as Dryden drove a smart race to add another Oktoberfest win to his resume. Isaac Marritt, Andrew Whelen and Ryan Brutzki completed the top-five.
There was another great battle in Jr. Lite as Josh Bisschop, younger brother of Austin, and Connor Pritiko broke free early on. Pritiko pressured Bisschop and made a move for the lead on the main straight twice, only for Bisschop to recover the lead to corners later with a sleek crossover move. As the laps ticked away, Bisschop was able to pull away and take the win, completing a spectacular season for the club champion. Pritiko crossed in second followed by Keidon Fletcher, Ethan Donkers and Christian Alger.
With 18 karts in the Novice class, it was jam-packed full of suspense. Ethan DeMenna erupted with the win over Jonny Robillard by 0.3 seconds. Quinton Murdock posted the fastest lap of the race but had to settle for third ahead of Ethan Slote and Joey Woolsey.
In Cadet, Nolan Hofrichter led every lap to take home his first Oktoberfest victory trophy. The podium was completed with Tenley Jackson, Kole Slote, Connor Rhodes and Ryan Tot finishing second through fifth.
Junior Briggs, another class added for the GP was won by Liam Rhodes, pulling away to a near two-recon victory. Mackenzie Clark came home second and posted the fastest lap in the process. Jordon Prior, Ciarra Collison and Tyson Wassink were third, fourth and fifth.
Finally, David Miller held off TJ Marshall to score the win in Sr. Heavy with the leaders followed by Adrian Stahle, Scott Robertson and Jesse Ward at the finish line.
Following the race day, two special races were completed as Jackie Harris took home the win in the Powderpuff race while Jeremy Riopelle was on top in the Mechanics race. Rob Good, one of the founding members of the Waterloo Regional Kart Club, made an appearance on the day and even suited up for the mechanics race, finishing second in the process.
With the Oktoberfest Grand Prix now complete, the Waterloo Regional Kart Club is done racing for another season. More information about the WRKC can be found on the their website, http://wrkc.on.ca.
CKN was on site taking photos at Oktoberfest. If you are interested in purchasing a photo print from the race, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your kart number and class and we will do our best to accommodate you.