Marco Filice had the drive of his lifetime on Sunday and it came at the biggest race of his career thus far.
Competing at the SKUSA SuperNationals in Las Vegas, USA, Filice barely made it into the KA100 Senior Final, which featured a massive 92 entrants!
The Prime Powerteam driver qualified 35th overall on Thursday on the temporary circuit SKUSA laid out in the parking lot of the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
After two heat races, it wasn’t looking good for Filice to make the Final until an impressive run to ninth in his third heat scored him enough points to directly transfer and avoid the LCQ.
Starting from 32nd on the grid with some of the best single-speed racers in North America taking the green flag, it was a race Filice will never forget.
A solid start saw him move up to 15th by lap five, navigating the chaos of the opening laps. But he slipped back to twentieth in the middle stages as the action picked up. A mid-race red flag brought the field back together for a short sprint to the finish.
A mega final few laps saw Filice advance into the top ten and when the dust settled, he was ranked fifth overall and stood on the SuperNationals podium.
We caught up with Filice to get his feeling about the race.
“This was the most challenging race I’ve ever had. The start was very intense, turn one had a crash that I just avoided but also clipped a kart that was avoiding the crash. From there I made my focus on passing or being passed for the remainder of the first few laps. When everything settled down, I planned my overtakes in advance to focus on not losing time. In the latter half of the race, the red flag came out and brought everyone back together.”
“I had a good jump on the restart and was able to get a gap to the kart behind me, allowing me to make some overtakes in corner one. I just barely missed another crash. The last few laps, everything went crazy and I just focused on hitting my marks and chasing the pack ahead. The leaders ahead crashed a few times and the final lap had drivers all over the track defending their positions. I crossed the finish line in eighth but lots of people had pushback bumper penalties. I was able to keep my nose clean the whole race and that moved me up to fifth and I was told to go to the podium.”
“Overall it was a crazy race, where we had loads of pace coming from 32nd and setting the fifth-fastest lap time and being the second biggest mover of the race. I didn’t think a podium would be possible after the heats, but what an incredible feeling to stand on the SuperNationals podium.”
Also in the KA100 division Filice’s Prime teammate Patrick Woods-Toth was able to qualify fourth overall and remained near the front in the heat races, but after starting the Final in 14th, he retired from the race on lap four.