The penultimate round of the GoPro Challenge GP had strong performances and surprising results from the committed racers competing for the title.
In Group 3, Rafael Roschel summoned his inner Ferrari and put it on pole. Despite Roschel’s firm but fair defending, Alexander Chong could not be stopped! Chong took the lead after a back and forth battle, gapping the field to the checkered flag. Igor Tkachuk leaped up to 3rd from 5th on the grid while John Blackwood slid back one spot to 4th. Justin Philips moved up to 5th while Adam Sawicki’s strong qualifying only translated into a 6th place result, and Tobiah Adam was steady in 7th.
In Group 2, the electrical gremlins caused issues with karts, and the race had to be re-run. Despite this, nothing was going to stop Marcello-Christian Nalli from taking victory away from pole-sitter Victor Zdanski, who had to settle for 2nd place. The highlight of the race was Adrian Abeijon’s charge from last on the grid to a 3rd place finish, demoting Marcello Mariani to 4th and Terry Muller to 5th. Fabio Oliviera and Patrice James swapped positions to finish in 6th and 7th respectively, and Nicholas Barnsdale slid back to 8th place despite starting mid-pack.
Alessio Alves started from pole position, but was beaten by the superior speed of Kevin Lazarus, who set the week’s fastest time at 22:205 seconds on route to victory. Alves dropped to 3rd place before making his way past Daniel Demaras to take back 2nd. An Impressive Scenic Gopi kept his title hopes alive by finishing 4th despite starting last. Ivano Di Vittorio and Rocco Crimeni finished as they qualified in 5th and 6th positions. The big surprise of qualifying was Chris Demaras, who started the tournament racing in Group 3, then Group 2, finally moved up to fight the big dogs in Group 1. Chris made an aggressive pass to take 7th place, while Muzzammil Qureshi dropped from 3rd in qualifying to an 8th place finish due to mechanical issues.
Kevin Lazarus joins Ivano Di Vittorio, Alessio Alves and Daniel Demaras as the fourth different overall round winner. The unique points system has kept the competition extremely close, rewarding consistency as much as top finishes. Going into the final round, first place through fifth place are separated by only 10 points. Demaras holds a 4 point lead over Alves who is 2 points ahead of Di Vittorio, who’s also 2 points ahead of Gopi with Lazarus a further 2 points back. Everything will come down to the final, thrilling round of the GoPro Challenge GP on Thursday, March 12th at K1 Speed Toronto.
|1. Daniel Demaras||25||24||23||21||93|
|2. Alessio Alves||24||27||15||23||89|
|3. Ivano DiVittorio||28||17||23||19||87|
|4. Scenic Gopi||22||25||18||20||85|
|5. Kevin Lazarus||21||18||21||23||83|
|6. Marcello Nalli||26||23||17||15||81|
|7. Terry Mueller||20||16||19||11||66|
|8. Adrian Abeijon||9||27||16||13||65|
|9. Rocco Crimeni||13||21||13||18||65|
|10. Alexander Bisaga||18||19||20||0||57|
|11. Muzzammil Qureshi||14||14||12||16||56|
|12. Victor Zdanski||11||15||14||14||54|
|13. Patrice James||17||11||11||9||48|
|14. Chris Demaras||8||13||9||17||47|
|15. Fabio Oliveira||12||20||4||10||46|
|16. Alec Pavese||23||22||0||0||45|
|17. Alexander Chong||19||12||1||7||39|
|18. Andrew Busnello||16||9||7||0||32|
|19. Marcello Mariani||7||8||5||12||32|
|20. Justin Phillips||4||10||8||3||25|
|21. Igor Tkachuk||6||7||6||5||24|
|22. Nicholas Barnsdale||10||3||2||8||23|
|23. Ivan Vidovic||15||6||0||0||21|
|24. John Blackwood||2||5||10||4||21|
|25. Rafael Roschel||5||4||3||6||18|
|26. Tobiah Adam||3||2||0||1||6|
|27. Adam Sawicki||1||0||0||2||3|
|28. Gareth Stackhouse||0||1||0||0||1|