The 2012 SuperKarts! USA SuperNationals 16 are finally underway at the RIO Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Two full days of practice are complete, and for the morning group of classes, they kicked off the day with qualifying and their first round of heat races.
The KZ2 SuperPro class, featuring some of the worlds best shifter-kart pilots, has drawn the most attention thus far in Sin City. Leading the way in qualifying Max Verstappen (PSL Karting/CRG) posted the fastest time, edging Marco Ardigo (TonyKart) by 0.029 seconds! Patrik Hajek placed his IPK North America/Praga in third, while Rick Dreezen (TonyKart) and Jorrit Pex (PSL Karting/CRG) rounded out the top five.
Canadians Phillip Orcic, Zach Meyer, Mike Vincec, and Nico Fattore placed 16th, 21st, 23rd and 25th places respectively.
In heat one, Verstappen grabbed the hole shot before leading the early portion of the race, while Hajek and Ardigo chased. However a minor mistake pushed Verstappen back to third, with Hajek gaining the lead. But with the laps winding down, Verstappen was able to regroup and regain the top spot before the checkers, with Hajek and Ardigo completing the top-three.
A great drive by Ben Hanley (ART GP) saw him move up from his 32nd starting spot all the way to 11th. Zach Meyer moved up to fourteenth, while trouble for the remaining Canadian’s all moved them down the order.