The final major event of the Canadian season is here and it’s the biggest of them all, the ASN Open Canadian Karting Championships held in the exquisite region of Mont-Tremblant, Quebec. The name may have changed a bit but it is still our National Championships and we are beyond excited to be trackside this week at the Jim Russell Karting Academy to bring the readers of the CKN Nation all the action.
So, based on the pre-entry lists we have received, we will break down the list of entries competing this weekend in each category as mention a few of the notables along with it.
Practice for the event kicks off Wednesday and Thursday followed by Qualifying action on Friday. Heat races also begin Friday and roll through Saturday to set the grids for the all-important National Championship Finals on Sunday. At the end of it all, eleven drivers will be crowned champion and etch their name into the Canadian karting history books.
Briggs & Stratton Senior
We are so excited for the Briggs & Stratton Senior racing this week, we don’t even know where to start in our previews. While the numbers are a little smaller than we expected, we’re hoping that will change with some last minute registrations this week. However, all the major players this season are here, we will break it down by chassis and team as we expect most of these drivers to work in tandem with a teammate.
The defending Junior and Senior Briggs Canadian champions are teamed up on Intrepid Karts this weekend as Tyler McCullough and Jonathon Treadwell will be on the hunt for another title.
Pearce Herder has western driver Sam Gerlof as his teammate this weekend on Awesome Karts.
Energy Karts have been fast this year with Marco Signoretti and Alex Da Silva earning big race wins already this year.
There is also the Ricciardo Kart contingent that includes Austin Bisschop, Kyle Edgar and Stephen Oliver. Zach Boam is the lone Maranello this weekend, as is Charlotte Lalonde for Margay Karts and Sebastien Laviolette for CRG.
Logan Cusson and Nathan Gilbert lead the Kosmic brand while the following will try to put BirelART back on top at the Canadian Championship: Gerald Caseley, Alex Murphy, Tom Cadieux and Charles Regimbal.
Two notable absences are Jean-Francois Lafontaine and Jeff Kingsley, who have both decided to focus on one category this weekend, Lafontaine in Shifter and Kingsley in Rotax Senior.
|Sam Gerlof||Awesome Kart|
|Pearce Herder||Awesome Kart|
|Simon Belanger||FA Kart|
|Kyle Edgar||Ricciardo Kart|
|Austin Bisschop||Ricciardo Kart|
|Jamie Hynes||Ricciardo Kart|
|Brandon Stephens||Ricciardo Kart|
|Stephen Oliver||Ricciardo Kart|
|Charlotte Lalonde||Margay Kart|
|Marco Signoretti||Energy Kart|
|Alex Da Silva||Energy Kart|
It’s another relatively small grid of drivers in Rotax Senior this weekend but that doesn’t reflect the talent level that will be on display. Cedrik Lupien and Gianfranco Mazzaferro will continue their head-to-head battle for the top in the category while Marco Di Leo is hoping to defend the National title he earned a year ago. Coltin McCaughan, Jeff Fulham and Ben Maxfield have arrived from the west to take on the eastern regulars while Justin Ovejero, Taegen Poles, Nicholas Hornbostel and Anthony Tolfa will be in the hunt as well.
The big news this week is that Rotax DD2 regular Jeffrey Kingsley has shifter down a gear and will race Rotax Senior this weekend. He ran the class last year at the ECKC finale and faired out well, so he’s another driver capable of taking home the National title.
Hopefully a few more drivers will arrive as last minute additions and the class can exceed 20 drivers this weekend.
|Cedrik Lupien||FA Kart|
|Jackson Neilands||FA Kart|
|Marco Di Leo||Intrepid|
Back for the second year in a row is the Open Shifter category at the Nationals. A new champion will be crowned as Pier-Luc Ouellette is absent this year, opening up the door to someone new.
The GP contingent of Frank Launi, Chad Campbell and Zachary Shearer will be quick, while rookies Joe Soranno and Austin Riley could quietly make their way to the front. Sam Guerin and Dominc Legrand will be quick too, as will JF Lafontaine, who is a last minute addition to the category with Team VSR.
There are also a few Open Shifter Masters competing amongst the group including Michel Legrand, Dany St-Hilaire and Cameron Nabert.
|Frank Launi||GP Kart|
|Chad Campbell||GP Kart|
|Zachary Shearer||GP Kart|
|Cameron Nabert||Ricciardo Kart|
Micro and Mini-Max have a few extra entries this weekend and these youngsters are all excited the race to become a Canadian National Champion.
In Micro-Max Austin Boyle, Marcello Paniccia and Anthony Sardellitti have been quick this season. Georgie Zouein has arrived from Dubai for another crack at the title in his home country, while Joseph Launi, Silas Gershman and Lorenzo Morsillo are aiming for the podium too!
The big question in Mini-Max is if anyone can knock Thomas Nepveu from the top of the podium. A perfect season in ECKC competition earned him the title and the lead candidate to take home the title this weekend. Regulars Dale Curran, Justin Arseneau and Chloe Chambers have been almost as fast at Nepveu this season and will be contenders for sure, with Ryland Duesburry, Adam Moor and Gianluca Savaglio also having the potential to be in the mix.
Jason Leung, a speedy driver from British Columbia, has made the cross-country trip for another Nationals opportunity while American Jak Crawford has joined PSL Karting this weekend with the potential to crash to Canadian party and take the title home to the USA.
|Joseph Launi||GP Kart|
|Ryland Duesburry||Energy Kart|
Briggs & Stratton Novice
There is one additional category competing this year at the Canadian Championships as a Briggs & Stratton Novice class is on the schedule. For young drivers just getting started in their career, Novice is a great starting point and it appears the class will crack ten drivers this week.
We don’t know a lot about these young guns, however that should change come Sunday. Alec Drummond, an ECKC and CRFKC race winner this year, has stepped down from Junior Lite to Novice to compete. Ayden Ingratta has been quick at the CRFKC races we’ve seen and theres a trio of quick drivers from east who have made the trip, including William Lowther, Callum Baxter and Myah Knickle.
Welcome to the National Briggs & Stratton Novice, we’re happy to see you here!
|Ayden Ingratta||Ricciardo Kart|
|Nick Gilkes||Ricciardo Kart|
Live timing for the event can be followed on CKN, along with daily reports and photo galleries, starting Friday.