One week after the first ever KartStars Canada race weekend at Goodwood Kartways, the series visited Innisfil Indy for round 2. For many drivers, the track presented a new challenge.
After gaining some experience in IKC races at Innisfil, Daniel Demaras believed he had better knowledge of the track than many of his rivals. After working hard on Friday, the No. 412 New Speed Motorsports kart was set up to perfection for the race weekend.
Daniel set good pace in morning practice, topping the time sheets over many seasoned veterans in the field. Working with Marc Stehle in qualifying, Demaras took pole position for the first time in his career, giving him the top spot on the grid for both heat races.
In heat race one, Stehle jumped Demaras off the line, a move which would later earn him a penalty. Daniel ran behind Marc for much of the race, before making a pass for the lead. On the last lap, Leavon Beaudin managed to make his way past Demaras and Stehle, with Daniel falling back to fourth. The New Speed Motorsports driver’s start was better in heat race two, and held on to the position. Leading seven of eight laps, Stehle passed Demaras in the final corner of the final lap, leaving Demaras in second.
Daniel Demaras started second in the pre-final alongside Marc Stehle. After dropping a position to Eli Yanko off the start, Daniel sat behind him for a few laps before making the pass and trying to catch Stehle. On the last lap, Yanko passed Daniel into turn one, followed by Beaudin, and after a minor collision, two more karts got past Daniel while Yanko who was forced off track. Demaras finished the pre-final in fifth.
While looking over the kart before the final race, Chris Demaras noticed a that the exhaust header was loose, and as a result was causing a lack of power from ‘Uniqua’ the Briggs & Stratton LO206 motor race prepared by PRO. After correcting the issue, The No. 412 was ready to challenge for victory.
Daniel used the inside lane on the start to good effect, passing Yanko in turn one. He settled into the train of Stehle, Beaudin and Macavoy for the early laps of the race. Macavoy was given a black and orange flag when the visor broke off his helmet! It would now be a three kart race to the finish.
After multiple laps of pushing, Daniel passed Beaudin with three to go, and followed Stehle closely, looking for where he might be vulnerable. On the last lap, Daniel pushed Stehle through turns one and two, and looked to the inside into the hairpin at turn three. Marc moved to the middle of the track, squeezing Demaras, but young Daniel didn’t back out, braking later than Marc and taking the lead, locking up his brakes in the process.
Beaudin took advantage of the overtake and looked to Daniel’s outside into turn four, but Daniel held the inside line to keep the position. Stehle cut back and went alongside Daniel into turn five, with Daniel dropping a wheel off the track, but Daniel again used the inside line to hold position, and defended another attack from Beaudin in the high speed turn six. Daniel led down the hill, covering the inside of the track before moving mid track for the final corner. Seeing the opening, Stehle went to the inside of Demaras, Daniel ending up out on the kerbs, with Beaudin getting past him too. Stehle crossed the line first, Daniel tried to pass Beaudin for second to no avail, finishing third.
While some might say Demaras’ result wasn’t as good as it could’ve been, they’re wrong. A podium finish in the Kartstars regional karting series is a great accomplishment.
The Briggs Masters field put on a thrilling race for everyone watching. The intense last lap battle for the lead, a clean and close contest, was a great example of how exciting Briggs racing can be. Daniel picked up his first big podium finish in exciting fashion, and had high hopes for Sunday at KartStars Canada round two.