The second championship series to hit the streets of Trois-Rivieres, Quebec this weekend was the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship. After Saturday’s Coupe du Quebec round, the inter-provincial series took their turn and provided the many fans on site some great racing action all day. Once again Mother Nature played games with everyone in the paddock as rain threatened all day and even drizzled down multiple times during the day but never enough to force drivers to rain tires.
The third round of the ECKC set the tone not only for their final round of the championship, held in September in Mont-Tremblant, but also it was the final major race before this years Canadian National Karting Championships, held at Goodwood Kartways in Ontario.
Ben Cooper (KMS/Birel) was once again on the top of the time sheets in Rotax DD2 qualifying ahead of Fred Woodley (Maranello), Brendon Bain (Maranello), Marco Di Leo (IPK North America/Praga), and Alessandro Bizzotto (PSL Karting/CRG).
At the start of the prefinal Cooper took the lead with Bain and Woodley right behind. Woodley however would get shuffled to the back of the field in the turn six hairpin, moving DiLeo into third followed by Bizzotto and Enrico Menotti (PSL Ontario/CRG). At the front Cooper stretched his is lead lap by lap as Bain held a three kart length gap to Di Leo in third. On lap eight Woodley made his way back up to sixth and was closing the gap to Bizzotto and Menotti quickly. On the final lap Menotti and Woodley took fourth and fifth demoting Bizzotto to sixth while Cooper would go on to win the race ahead of Bain and Di Leo.
After the opening ceremonies to kick off Sunday’s final races, Cooper once again led the way into turn one. Di Leo took second at the start from third ahead of Bain, Woodley and Menotti. Bain would be the first to get past Di Leo as the IPK Driver was two tenths off the pace. Next on Di Leo’s bumper was Woodley who had battled hard with Di Leo for a lap until contact moved the Maranello pilot down the running order after using the escape route in corner seven, promoting Menotti to fourth. Even though Menotti was right behind Di Leo he couldn’t do anything to get past for the final spot on the podium. Cooper eventually went on to win the race uncontested ahead of Bain, Di Leo, Menotti and Bizzotto.
Following the race, Di Leo was assigned a penalty, moving him behind Woodley in sixth place and promoting Menotti to the podium.