Powering the Birel chassis in Valencia, Spain, Rotax Senior has been very exciting to watch. Many of the North American drivers have really showed promise this weekend against the worlds best Rotax racers and in the final run of heat races on Friday it was much of the same.
Rotax Senior Heat A vs D:
The first Senior Max heats got under way with groups A vs D. Josh White (Great Britain) found himself in a battle with Martin Mortensen (Denmark) and Nicolas Picot of France. The three drivers swapped positions consistently giving the fans in Valencia an impressive show with White holding on over Mortensen and Picot. Rounding out your top five was Spanish driver Eduardo Garcia and finally Antoni Ptak (Poland).
As for North Americans it was Ashley Rogero who gave an extraordinary effort in an attempt to gain some points to avoid elimination. Rogero was aggressive and consistently made passes which finally landed her in fifteenth position. Just ahead of Rogero was Canadian Bryce Choquer in fourteenth. Finally team USA driver Mason Marotta ran into some unfortunate luck finishing in the infield in 35th.
Rotax Senior Heat B vs C:
The second and final Senior Max heat took place between groups B and C. Local driver Carlos Gil (Spain) was able to fend off Team USA driver Oliver Askew until the checkered flag flew barely edging out a victory over the American. The battle for third place on saw Portuguese driver Bruno Borlido getting the position over Aavo Talvar (Estonia) and it was Jack Bartholomew (Great Britain) rounding out the top five.
From Team USA Philip Arscott had a very impressive drive which gave him seventh position overall. The best drive of the morning went to Canadian Zachary Claman-DeMelo, who was spun out in the first corner falling all the way back to 30th position when he completed lap one. DeMelo had an amazing driver through the field which put him back up the thirteenth position. Team USA drivers Dan Roeper and Jake Craig found themselves in fifteenth and seventeenth respectively. Finally Canadian Christophe Paquet was involved in some chaos which lead to a 27th place finish respectively.
Heat Race Rankings:
With the points tallied from the three rounds of heat races, Bruno Borlido leads the way followed by Carlos Gil, Luca Travaglini, Eduardo Garcia, Josh White and Zachary Claman DeMelo. Even with his DQ from heat one, Oliver Askew wound up sixteenth and will start the PreFinal from the outside of row eight. Just sneaking in to Saturday’s competition as well as Philip Arscott as he ranked 28th and avoided the Last Chance Race.
Rotax Senior Last Chance Race:
As the rain was falling hard for the Senior Max last chance qualifier. This race contained five North American drivers as all team members braved the rain to cheer on their teammates. Multiple spins and crashes made the soaking wet one fun to watch.
Calvin Wong (Malaysia) who was able to secure the first transfer position followed by Swedish driver Viktor Oeberg. An extremely impressive drive came from Team USA member Jake Craig as he secured the third transfer position as Gary Donnelly (IRL) was able to lock down fourth. American Dan Roeper crossed the stripe in fifth followed by Christophe Dreysping of Germany, but Roeper was accessed a penalty for contact with Bryce Choquer early in the heat that knocked him well back. Choquer regained his composure to finish in seventh and with the penalty to Roeper he earned the final transfer position for Saturdays main events.
Unfortunately drivers Christophe Paquet (CAN), Mason Marotta (USA) and Ashley Rogero (USA) were eliminated as they did not make the top 34 drivers.