The final day of the 2013 Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals brought excitement and ambience to the NOLA Motorsports Park facility as Saturday played host to six Grand Finals, crowning world and Invitational Champions. It was the best weather New Orleans has given us all week with off and on sunshine throughout the day. After a great opening ceremony in which Aretha Franklin sang the American National anthem, followed by a flyover from the local US Air Force it was time to go racing.
For the first time ever, the Rotax Mini-Max class was on display at the Rotax Grand Finals, and like the Micro-Max class they did not disappoint. The action was fierce through both the Prefinal and Final with many lead changes, and hardcore battles throughout the entire 35-kart field.
While the Canadians seemed to be swarmed by the American team, that didn’t stop the nine young Canadians from mixing it up.
In the final, it was Antonio Serravalle who stole the show in the closing laps, as he never seemed to fall further than third overall in the 10-lap final. Serravalle got into the lead with two laps to go, and displayed a great defensive performance to cross the line in first. Second place would go to American David Malukas while a wild few closing laps and a great performance by Samuel Lupien vaulted him onto the podium in third.
Roman DeAngelis was the next Canadian in sixth, while Griffin Dowler was twelfth and Thierry Cote fourteenth. Joe Soranno drove from the rear of the grid to finish 20th, with JP Hutchinson 22nd. Finally Tommy Simard and Carson Vogel ended up 30th and 32nd.
Following the race there were some issues in the tech tent, with Serravalle being stripped of the victory for a technical infraction. However the final ranking is under appeal.