Round number one of the 2015 Eastern Canadian Karting Championship is in the books after a superb weekend of racing at Goodwood Kartways, just north of Toronto, Ontario. Over 170 competitors took the track amongst nice classes, displaying some of the best racing we have ever seen at the ECKC.
Rotax Senior Max was one of the highlight races on both days and here is how it went down.
With a mix of young guns and class veterans, nobody was surprised that the racing in Rotax Senior was some of the best we’ve seen in years. Kevin Monteith (REM/Kosmic) got things rolling with the fast time in Qualifying but in the PreFinal he and Marco DiLeo (Goodwood/Intrepid) went toe-to-toe, exchanging the lead often and putting on a show. DiLeo would score the win, setting up an epic Final.
The two exchanged blows very early in the Final, allowing the trailing group to join in on the action with Cedrik Lupien (SH Racing/FA Kart) overtaking both and gaining the lead on lap three. But his lead was short lived when DiLeo overtook both Monteith and Lupien a couple laps later, until he once again tangled with Monteith, this time allowing Gianfanco Mazzaferro (Ferrolati Corse/TonyKart) to sneak by as DiLeo fell back to fourth.
Mazzaferro had built up a small lead, but it diminished quite quickly by a charging Monteith who would return to the lead just as DiLeo rejoined the fray. The action continued with Mazzaferro grabbing the lead in one and DiLeo also taking advantage of Monteith building up an epic final lap.
Driving on the defensive, Mazzaferro played it safe through the first half of the track, but with DiLeo all over him entering corner nine Mazzaferro ran just wide enough on the exit to allow DiLeo to slide inside as they raced up the hill. With momentum on his side, DiLeo fist-pumped into the air, celebrating the victory by a mere 0.074 seconds over Mazzaferro, with Lupien completing the podium. Monteith settled for fourth while Marco Signoretti (Energy Corse/Energy Kart) had a great recovery from the tail of the starting grid to finish fifth, overtaking Taylor Gates (REM/Kosmic) on the final lap.
Mazzaferro’s growing confidence was on display when he returned to Goodwood on Sunday. Blistering off the fastest time in Qualifying, he would back it up with the win in the PreFinal as well with Lupien just behind.
Di Leo pushed Mazzaferro to the lead in the Final and the two did create a small gap back to Lupien, who had his hands full of Signoretti. But Mazzaferro went on the defensive very early on and it allowed the trailers to catch back up. Not wasting any opportunity, Lupien blasted to the inside of DiLeo in corner five and brought Signoretti with him as DiLeo did all he could to hang on and not run too wide.
From there Mazzaferro went to work, posting qualifying speed lap times to maintain his gap and secure the victory, his first as a Senior. Di Leo regained third from Signoretti but wasn’t able to zero in on Lupien before the checkers as the two class rookies made a statement early on in the season.
Signoretti settled for fourth while Anthony Tolfa (BN Racing/TonyKart) completed the top-five. It was bittersweet for Tolfa, who was forced to retire with only one lap remaining a day earlier from the top-five. Finally, Monteith recovered from the tail of the grid to finish seventh on Sunday after an issue in the PreFinal forced him to withdraw.
Mazzaferro leaves Goodwood with the Championship lead, but heading to ICAR for round two, a track that is new to everyone, we expect to see more of this great Rotax Senior racing in just over a months time.