With not only race wins at stake this weekend at the famed Le Monaco de Trois-Rivieres, Team PSL Karting will be vying for championship titles in the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship (ECKC) as well. The glamorous event is quickly becoming the marquee street race in North America, as a strong team of nine PSL pilots will take to the 1.2 km temporary circuit at the site of the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres (GP3R) at Exposition Park for ECKC action as well as the Coupe du Quebec series. Pier-Luc Ouellette is locked in a championship battle for the ECKC Rotax DD2 title, as are two PSL team members, Luc Sauriol and Marc-Andre Bourgeois, in the Rotax DD2 Masters class. Zachary Claman-DeMelo is also up for a repeat Rotax Junior ECKC title. Focused on mastering the challenging and unique layout, and adding to PSL’s rich history at the event, the entire team is sure be on top of their game this weekend.
Two-time Rotax DD2 World Champion Pier-Luc Ouellette is focused on securing the ECKC DD2 title this weekend in Trois-Rivieres. With a Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals (RMCGF) berth on the line, Ouellette will need to overcome his nearest championship rival, a fellow two-time Rotax World Champion. His two victories at the opening round at Goodwood Kartways, as well as three subsequent podium finishes, have Ouellette leading the ECKC point standings before the one race drop. The recent Coupe du Quebec round saw Ouellette return to the top step of the podium, and Ouellette is focused on repeating that effort and taking his second ECKC title. Alessandro Bizzotto will join Ouellette in the Rotax DD2 class, vying for the prestigious Monaco win and ultimate bragging rights.
“Pier-Luc will definitely be looking for redemption this weekend after the Mosport rounds,” explained PSL Karting’s Team Manager Andrew Campbell. “We have worked to make some improvements to our internal engine program, and together with Pier-Luc’s focus and determination, I feel we have the right combination to take the DD2 title.”
Two Rotax DD2 Masters pilots are in a three-way battle for the ECKC championship title and RMCGF invitation of their own. Class rookie Marc-Andre Bourgeois and 2006 Rotax Masters World Champion Luc Sauriol currently sit second and third place in the points respectively, and will need to put everything on the line this Sunday. Bourgeois earned top honours in Rounds #2 & 4, while Sauriol topped the blocks at the series opener. Both would like nothing more than to return to the top step of the podium in Trois-Rivieres, and with the championship on the line, the two will be fighting harder than ever.
Three Rotax Junior drivers will represent PSL Karting/CRG this weekend. Zachary Claman-DeMelo jumped to the second place in the point standings after a complete weekend sweep at the Mosport rounds. A zero points gain from ICAR will need Claman-DeMelo to be on top of his game this Sunday, but the red hot driver is certainly up to the task. Recently named ekartingnews.ca’s #1 ranked Rotax Junior driver, Samuel Fontaine will look to score that elusive first victory in front of the thousands of spectators who line the temporary street circuit. Gustavo Bandeira will return to ECKC action this weekend, and will likely be a challenger for race wins after posting solid results during the Goodwood rounds. Coming off a fifth place run at the Brazilian Nationals two weeks ago, Bandeira is sure to be a threat to the series regulars.
Completing the PSL roster are Matthew Thomas and Pedro Cardoso, as both will fight for the wins in the Rotax Mini Max class. In preparation for the US Rotax Grand Nationals in early August, American hot shoe Thomas will get some extra seat time in this weekend. Also scoring excellent results during the ECKC season opener, Thomas will certainly be a threat once karts hit the track. Fresh off his Brazilian National Championship, Pedro Cardoso will also be one to watch in the Mini Max class. The 2012 Florida Winter Tour Rotax Mini Max Champion has proved his strength and determination and will look to score an elusive Monaco win to add to his stellar 2012 results.
“As Pedro’s last year in the Mini Max class, we are really hoping to go out a high note before he takes on the junior ranks,” continued Campbell. “Pedro brings a good energy to the team, and he will be working together with Matthew to build his teammate’s confidence before heading into the US Grand Nationals in a few week’s time.”
“Overall, I am really excited. It is a big event for everyone at PSL Karting/CRG and I really hope we can shine this weekend,” Campbell concluded.
Team PSL Karting has already arrived on site of the famed street race, and will take in practice sessions today and Friday in preparation for the weekend’s action. Saturday will feature the fifth round of the Coupe du Quebec series, with Sunday marking the ECKC finale.
Team PSL Karting will be trackside in 2012 at the Pan American Rotax Max Challenge, Eastern Canadian Karting Championship, Quebec Cup, Le Monaco de Trois-Rivieres, United States Grand Nationals, ASN Canada FIA Canadian National Karting Championships and SKUSA SuperNationals. Team PSL Karting is associated with CRG, Maxter Kart Engines, Rotax, Tillett Racing Seats, Sniper, Unipro, Douglas Wheels, Vega, MG Tires, Arai, Bell, ULV, Mir, Freem, Elf Fuels, Alfano, MaxJet Software, D.I.D. Racing Chains, KC and Power Mist.