A new era is set to begin for the sport of karting in the Pacific Northwest region of the North America, as the Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge will host its inaugural event at the Greg Moore Raceway in Chilliwack, British Columbia. The May 17-19 event will welcome a number of top racers and teams, ready to compete in the Rotax Max Challenge and Superkarts! USA categories that will be offered in the four weekend series. Pre-registration completed last week, and a tremendous entry list will travel to the Vancouver area from all across the continent.
The Greg Moore Raceway is among the historic facilities in North America. A number of Canadian and United States national championships have been contested at the home of the West Coast Kart Club. Formerly known as CART BC, the 1.2km (3/4-mile) circuit is among the most challenging tracks in the sport and is sure to provide a great venue for the Rotax Max Challenge and Superkarts! USA competitors. The Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge will feature eight rounds of racing over the course of four weekends, with the point championship counting the best six races. This will allow drivers and teams who can not make all four weekends a chance at contesting the title chases without a penalty, all while gaining ‘punches’ toward the Rotax Grand Nationals for United States drivers or earning a guaranteed starting position on SuperSunday at the SuperNationals in Las Vegas for SKUSA competitors.
A number of teams are showing their support of the opening weekend of the Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge, making the long journey up to Chilliwack. One team that will benefit from such a well-structured and promoted series in the area is British Columbia-based CRG West operation, led by Danny Kacic. “I am very excited about this new series. I feel it will only be good for the sport to have a premier northwest karting series. There is a ton of talent in the northwest and this series will give those talented drivers the opportunity to qualify for the Rotax Grand Finals so they can showcase their talent around the world. I have always felt that the Northwest needed a top level series that gives drivers a chance to qualify for the worlds. CRG West has come on board with the program as we believe in the concept of this series and we want to help the northwest talent get recognized.”
Outside the area, drivers and teams are coming from all parts of North America. Southern California is a hot-bed for the sport, and one of the newest and most successful programs in recent years is the Phil Giebler Racing stable, led by 2007 Indy 500 Rookie of the Year Phil Giebler and his father Everett. Phil commented on several reasons for taking his team north for the Can-Am inaugural event and the entire series, “We have a couple drivers from the Pacific Northwest that are looking for good competitive races as well as some drivers that are willing to travel in order to keep sharp, get their required punches for the US Rotax Grand Nationals and prepare properly for future races. We can get two punches in one weekend and do a lot of proper testing and give the drivers good experience in race situations, which is very valuable. This also gives our drivers an opportunity to win a ticket to the Rotax Grand Finals and we are working hard to send drivers there this year. The race entry fees are much lower than other major events, and helps drivers justify the extra cost of travel. We are excited to see what the Can-Am has to offer race weekend.”
Unlike most regional programs, the Can-Am series will be part of the Rotax Max Challenge and provide competitors an opportunity to take part in the Rotax Grand Finals this November. Champions in the Senior Max, DD2, DD2 Masters and Junior Max classes will earn a ticket to the NOLA Motorsports Park to take on the best in the world of Rotax. The Can-Am program was also granted four tickets toward the Micro & Mini Max Invitational that will take place alongside the Rotax Grand Finals, awarded to the top two in Mini Max and Micro Max point standings. Those racers competing in the Superkarts! USA classes as part of the Can-Am ProKart Challenge will enjoy the priority pre-registration program for the SKUSA SuperNationals XVII in Las Vegas. Champions from the Can-Am PKC will also be awarded a guaranteed starting spot in their respective class on SuperSunday in Las Vegas (class must average five racers for the year in order to receive ticket).
The Rotax Max Challenge categories are stacked, thanks to Rotax Grand Finals tickets awarded at the end of the series. Many of the top regional drivers, including those who have shined on the national level will be on hand, welcoming drivers from as far as Southern California, Texas and even Florida. Former Team USA members Jake Craig, Derek Wang, and 2011 US Rotax Grand Nationals champ Stepanova Nekeel are among the 20 plus in Rotax Senior. Team Canada will be represented by former members Bryce Choquer and Chris Glover. DD2 competition is loaded with talent – as 2012 US Rotax Grand Nationals champ Joey Wimsett is set to battle for a spot back to the Rotax Grand Finals. Masters drivers Scott Falcone and Brent Harper will battle Wang, doing double duty in the DD2 roster with 2009 US champ Mike Daniel among the contenders in the regular Masters Max division. The Junior field is filled with a number of skilled drivers, all gunning for a ticket to the Grand Finals. Mini Max and Micro Max will have over 10 in each class, all battling for two tickets to the Invitational in New Orleans. The Superkarts! USA Stock Moto classes are continuing to gain numbers as the event draws near. SKUSA #2 plate holder Joey Wimsett will compete in S1 Pro while more entries are streaming in for the S2 Semi-Pro, S4 Master and S5 Junior divisions.
The Can-Am program would like to thank the solid group of sponsors to support the 2013 season; CRG West, Wicked Fabrication, Neliton Race Concepts, Black Flag Racing, Maximum Velocity Performance, HoleShot Drive Systems and Rolison Performance Group. More details regarding the 2013 Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge can be found at www.rotaxcanamprokartchallenge.com
2013 Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge
May 17-19: Greg Moore Raceway – Chilliwack, British Columbia
June 14-16: Pat’s Acres Racing Complex – Canby, Oregon
July 5-7: McMinnville Kart Track – McMinnville, Oregon
September 20-22: Medford Kart Track – Medford, Oregon
About: Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge
The Rotax Can-Am ProKart Challenge is the newest regional racing program, focused around supporting the western coast of North America, welcoming Canadian and American teams and drivers. The four event program will be a best six of eight championship chase, offering categories of the Rotax Max Challenge and Superkarts! USA. This new program will provide a unique atmosphere, formatted like a national summer series program. Rotax racers will receive punches toward the 2013 US Rotax Grand Nationals, also with four tickets up for grabs to the 2013 Rotax Grand Finals. SKUSA racers will race for a guaranteed starting spot at the SKUSA SuperNationals XVII in Las Vegas with class championship.