Season six of the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship is upon us and we here at CKN are very excited! Over the next three days we will break down all nine official ECKC classes utilizing a fun new format. For each category we have selected three drivers we think are championship favourites, three drivers who could play spoiler and one rookie who we feel could make an impact in their first campaign in the category.
Kicking things off, Wednesday features all three Briggs & Stratton classes followed by Junior Rotax classes on Thursday and the Senior Rotax classes on Friday leading up to all the action at Goodwood. We will be trackside all weekend bringing you all the action on the site and our social networks.
Briggs & Stratton LO206 Senior
The fastest growing class in the past three years, Briggs & Stratton LO206 Senior is a fan favourite. Side-by-side racing with tire rubbing and constant battles have helped rebuild the four-cycle community and with the Canadian Championships back in Ontario this year, the numbers continue to rise. There will be a few front runners from last year who will sit on the sidelines this season, including Michael Glaze and Derek Michaud, but there are no shortage of replacements to help fill the void. Bring on the action!
Since the ECKC adopted the Briggs & Stratton LO206 program Jonathon Treadwell has been the driver to beat, winning the past two ECKC Briggs & Stratton Senior championships. This year Treadwell once again looks to be the man to beat, and he brought home the win in the pre ECKC tune up race at Goodwood this past weekend to kickstart things off. The competition in the category continues to but let’s see if Treadwell can defend his title and bring home the three-peat.
Jean Francois Lafontaine:
That’s right folks the back-to-back ASN Canadian National Champion will be making a run at the ECKC championship for the first time this year as commitments with school has forced him to sit out multiple rounds in the past two seasons. If there is a driver who can really take it to Treadwell it is Lafontaine, as two of his National titles have been won at two of the tracks the ECKC championship, as well as being the one driver who is fast whereever he races. Beware, because this championship just got interesting.
It appears that Goodwood Kartways co-owner Marco DiLeo will return to the Briggs & Stratton Senior category after a shortened season in 2014 that saw him miss the opening race and still end up on the Championship podium. DiLeo has a knack of staying up front and in the middle of any lead battle no matter where he is and could easily stand in-between Treadwell and Lafontaine en route to a shot a the title. He does have three ECKC Rotax Senior Championships, can he earn his first in Briggs Senior this year?
Update 10:30AM: Marco has informed us that he will compete only in Rotax Senior at the ECKC, running in Briggs only at the CRFKC.
Kyle has been fast since he moved up to Senior two seasons ago and this year he already has been up to pace with the likes of Treadwell and Marco Dileo finishing second in the CRFKC event last weekend. Even though Edgar has been quick, his lack of experience against the class veterans prevented him from staying at the front at the end of the final, often finding himself without some support. With more experience this season and by limiting his mistakes Edgar could possibly win one of these finals and be a consistent face on the podium.
Bellanger might be older than many of his counter parts but he proves that age is just a number and he runs at the front of the field in almost every race he attends. Last season Bellanger drove a superb race at Le Monaco de Trois-Riveres, taking the win in the Saturday final. This year Bellanger will be back and with that maiden win in hand he should be able to bring home a few more W’s this season.
Showing great improvements over the past few seasons, Lalonde is dedicated to putting herself on the ECKC and Canadian National podiums in 2015. Last year was a great year as she proved she can race with the boys, often finishing in the top-ten and knocking on the door of the top-five. She is off to a great start in 2015 winning the Ottawa-Gatineau Kart Championship opener earlier this month and is very excited to get to Goodwood.
The Senior Rookie:
He might be the rookie in the field with the best chance at taking the victory in Briggs & Stratton Senior. A few weeks ago at Goodwood he drove away from the field to take the win in the final ahead of veteran karter Mark Stehle. The young driver has really come to terms with the Briggs & Stratton package and call us crazy but we think he has a shot to be the one guy this year to pull off a huge upset.
Don’t miss the rest of our ECKC Class Previews this week, only on CKN!