The saying goes “if it was not for bad luck you’d have no luck”, but Michael d’Orlando doesn’t let that define his race weekend in Las Vegas, NV. In the final round of the Rotax US Open Series at the Rio All Suite Hotel & Casino, Michael battled all types of obstacles all week long, from mechanical issues to just being at the wrong place at the wrong time, but he showed his perseverance, in addition to his talent. His never-give-up attitude showed that it can bring you through a field and make a good driver to be even better.
Michael kicked off his race weekend on Thursday by qualifying his No. 251 KoeneUSA prepared Tony/Kart in 12th position, in a tight field with some of the top drivers in North America, and against strong desert winds. Bad luck would come early as he got collected in heat #1 in an accident between two other karts, although he recovered back up to 15th slot from the tail of the field. Friday’s racing would test Michael’s perseverance as he had electrical problems in the engine in heat #2, which gave him the opportunity to show some of his talent to maintain 16th by gaining back positions throughout the technical infield that he’d lost from lack of horse power on the straight away. A solid performance for 8th in heat #3 was what he’d hoped was the end of the unlucky streak but then unfortunately, another incident of unavoidable contact early in heat #4 was another showing of his never-give-up attitude as he recovered from the tail of the field once again to make his way back up to 11th.
As the sun came out and the afternoon weather looked perfect for the feature events on Saturday, Michael once again started his Rotax Junior Max Tony/Kart in the 12th position, outside row 6. He would over come adversity once again, after contact in turn 1 of the opening lap would send him into the temporary barriers with nowhere else to go. He worked his way back up to 18th, with slightly compromised equipment from the impact but unfortunately a few laps later a further incident would end his race early.
Despite his disappointing Rotax US Open showing in Las Vegas, Michael still never gave up and kept his head up as you learn from the good as well as bad situations.
“That was a tough weekend”, said Michael. “I could just not seem to catch a break. Despite all the set backs, I would not give up and worked hard to make my way back up the field as best I could. I had a good kart. All you can do is learn from situations like this and keep working hard for the next race. Every race weekend is a learning experience but weekends like this, for me, help make me get stronger as a driver, especially mentally. You are going to have times like this and I keep my head up and battle back. This is racing.”
DRC would like to give thanks to their team at KoeneUSA (www.teamkoeneusa.com), including Mike Maurini, Martijn Koene and Jesse Dunham for their continued hard work and support. And special thanks to the support of their sponsors at adidas Motorsport (www.adidasmotorsport.com), Kool Nerd Clothing (www.koolnerdclothing.com), Focused Project Management (www.focusedpm.net) and Iona Preparatory School (www.ionaprep.org).
For more information on Michael d’Orlando, please visit www.dorlandoracing.com. Be sure to follow him on Facebook (Michael d’Orlando Racing), Twitter (@dorlandoracing) and Instagram (@dorlandoracing) to stay up to date on news, information, photos and results.