The ASN Canadian National Karting Championships return to beautiful Le Circuit Karting Mont-Tremblant this week and with teams already moving into the paddock the excitement level is beginning to rise. The country’s best kart racers, teams and tuners have set their sights on becoming one of eight new National Champions, and Rotax racers have their sights set on becoming members of Rotax Team Canada, thus gaining an invitation to compete this Fall at the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals in Portimao, Portugal. CKN will be trackside from the first unofficial practice sessions beginning Wednesday, keeping readers informed on the event every step of the way.
With views on predicting who should fare well in working toward those goals, Canadian Karting News has prepared unique class previews for this year’s National Championships, with staffers Cody Schindel, Neelan Nadesan and Jason Holland each submitting top-10 predictions in Rotax Junior, Senior and DD2. Taking into account results from this year in the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship, Western Canadian Championship and Quebec Cup; last year’s performances in Tremblant, and their general track record, drivers were ranked by the CKN trio. Then, taking the average of the three ballots, an unofficial class ranking was created. Drivers that were not listed on all three ballots were issued a score of 11. CKN will present its predictions in the coming days, continuing today with Rotax Senior.
The reigning National Champion in Rotax Senior heads the CKN prediction list as Steven Szigeti enters with a scoring average of 1.67 points. After a season that saw him take a pair of wins in the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship and take the championship right down to the wire, Szigeti returns to a track he knows as well as any, and one he dominated on last year on his way to the title and a spot on Rotax Team Canada.
Szigeti’s SH Karting teammate also dominated at Mont-Tremblant last year, and also earned a National Championship by a large margin. Jesse Lazare ended his Junior career on top and also made his first visit to the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals as a member of Team Canada. Picked on all three ballots to reach the podium in his first Nationals as a Senior, Lazare averaged 2.33 ranking points. Though he’s beginning his formula car racing career of late, noone underestimates his ability in a kart and tuner Steven Chapman will certainly have his dialled in.
Intrepid North America front man Marco DiLeo heads to Nationals ranked in the number-three spot with an average of 2.67 points, and just like Szigeti and Lazare before him, he was picked to win the event outright. Already a member of Team Canada by virtue of his third-consecutive Eastern Canadian Karting Championship title, DiLeo will be looking to add Canadian National Champion to his resume as well. He’ll also have a new chassis like those before him, piloting an HRS powered Praga Kart when he takes to the track this week looking for his fifth win of nine starts.
Prime Powersports’ lead senior Luke Chudleigh will have his familiar Maranello Kart beneath him when he rolls on track at Nationals, and it’s a track he has fared well at in the past. When the ECKC visited in 2011, the only man to beat him to the checkered flag was World Rotax Champion Ben Cooper, and even then Chudleigh was right on his bumper. Chudleigh has spent his sophomore Senior season fighting at the front with the veterans and he also utilized the Quebec Cup race in July to prepare for the Nationals, looking strong and finishing fourth as he tuned up.
While the top four drivers held the same positions on all three ballots in varying order, number five varied across the board with Kevin King, Austin Milwain and Kevin Monteith each being selected in the spot. King was third last year for PSL/CRG, Milwain returns to action from a Kart Stars Grand Prix win aboard a new Energy chassis, but REM/Birel driver Kevin Monteith takes the spot after being the only one of the trio ranked on all three ballots and averaging 6.67 points.
Full tabulations for Rotax Senior from the CKN trio:
|Driver:||Chassis:||Rank 1||Rank 2||Rank 3||Average:|
|Marco Di Leo||Praga||4||1||3||2.67|
|Chris Glover||LH Kart||11||11||8||10|
– These are strictly predictions offered up for CKN readers, and not any type of formal ranking.
– With no official pre-entry list, predictions were based strictly on those who are qualified through the ECKC, WCC and Quebec Cup.
– These are just for fun, read and enjoy!
Who you think will win this years Rotax Senior Canadian National Championship?
- Jesse Lazare (46%, 97 Votes)
- Marco Di Leo (16%, 34 Votes)
- Steven Szigeti (15%, 31 Votes)
- Austin Milwain (8%, 17 Votes)
- Other (5%, 11 Votes)
- Bryce Choquer (4%, 8 Votes)
- Luke Chudleigh (2%, 5 Votes)
- Kevin Monteith (1%, 3 Votes)
- Kevin King (1%, 3 Votes)
- Marc-Andre Levesque (0%, 0 Votes)
- Mikel Pelletier (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 209