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Round 4/5 - K1 Circuit August 23-25, 2024
K1 Circuit
32240 Grand Ave
Winchester, CA 92596
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California ProKart Challenge

California ProKart Challenge Visits Santa Maria
Friday, 24 May 2024 13:34

Three straight in KA100 Senior for Ethan Lampe (Photo: Andres Malovos - @amalovos)

The California ProKart Challenge traveled to the Santa Maria Karting Association facility over the May 18-19 weekend. The Superkarts! USA regional program contested the third round of the 2024 championship program. Enjoying the coastal weather in Santa Maria, California, the event featured one round of competition over two days of on-track action featuring a practice, qualifying, Prefinal and Final format to complete the first half of the 2024 schedule.

An increase in numbers to 30 drivers was welcomed in the KA100 Senior by P1 Engines class with the same result as the previous two rounds. Ethan Lampe came away with his third straight main event victory in the category, completing a sweep in Santa Maria. He began with the fast time in qualifying, posting a 49.137-lap and edging out Aiden Kempf by a slim 73 thousandths. The top two qualifiers exchanged the top spot in the Prefinal before a red flag ended the race after eight laps with Lampe earning the race win. It was a wire-to-wire performance in the main event as Lampe led all 24 laps to claim a third straight victory in 2024. Jackson Menchu won the battle for second over Kempf, with Keagan Kaminski placing fourth with the fast lap of the race. Izaac Gutierrez completed the top-five.

Alex Rantala secured his first win of the season in KA100 Junior (Photo: Andres Malovos – @amalovos)

After two fourth place finishes, Alex Rantala was able to break through with his first podium of the season, celebrating on the top step of the podium in KA100 Junior by SuperSpeed Bearings. Rantala secured the fast time in qualifying by only 41 thousandths ahead of Johnie Stamps. Qualifying third was Iain Kim, who jumped out to the lead early in the Prefinal as Rantala slipped down to seventh. Rantala fought back to the front, taking the lead before the white flag and earning the provisional win. A penalty for contact moved him to third in the order, however, with Kim credited with the win ahead of Tyren Scott. After Scott and Kim exchanged the lead to begin the 24-lap Final, Rantala drove up to claim the position by lap four. From there, Rantala powered away to over a three-second advantage for the victory. Stamps recovered from a DNF in the Prefinal to finish second. Scott ended up third with Keegan Ellsworth and Matthew Cagle rounding out the top-five.

The Mini Swift by Formula Works class welcomed a second different winner on the season. The quickest in qualifying was Luis Martinez, posting a 52.819 lap to clear Nathan Ramirez by 52 thousandths. It was Daniel Ramirez that took control of the field in the Prefinal, moving up to the lead on lap four before going to the win. That led Daniel to the pole position for the Final where he led all 22 laps for a wire-to-wire victory. Sebastian Hauser advanced up to second ahead of Nathan Ramirez, as Martinez ended up fourth. Jett Destito capped off the top-five.

Daniel Ramirez notched is first Mini Swift victory of the season (Photo: Andres Malovos – @amalovos)

A third different winner on the season was crowned in Santa Maria for the Micro Swift by Sanner Racing division. Round One winner Aidan Go laid down a 53.881 lap to claim the fast time in qualifying. Sitting second after the timed session was Hudson Hidalgo, who jumped to the lead in the Prefinal and led all 12 laps for the race win. It was a repeat performance in the Final, with Hudson showing the way for all 22 circuits to claim his first victory of the season. Asher Biezonsky drove to second as Koa Saito placed third ahead of Go, with Piyush Iyer finishing fifth.

Robert Switzler returned to the series for a second victory in 2024 in two starts in the X30 Master by Nash Motorsportz category. Round Two winner Tony Rossetti set the fast time in qualifying to clear the field by over four tenths. He led every lap of the Prefinal, getting challenged in the Final by Scott Nealon and Switzler. Nealon led the first nine laps before Rossetti returned to the point. Switzler became the top challenger for the lead and took the spot heading to the white flag. He would hold on through the final lap to secure his second win in 2024. Rossetti settled for second with Nealon back in third. Anastasia Alexander ran uncontested in the X30 Senior division. DJ Jenkins swept the Master Shifter by Mike Manning Karting class for a second straight round, outrunning Scott Carvalho.

Hudson Hidalgo became the third different winner in the Micro Swift category (Photo: Andres Malovos – @amalovos)

The California ProKart Challenge will go on a summer break, with the Superkarts! USA Pro Tour schedule continuing. First is the SKUSA SpringNationals at the Motorsports Country Club of Cincinnati on June 14-16 before traveling to the New Castle Motorsports Park for the SKUSA SummerNationals on July 26-28. The CPKC regional program resumes on August 23-25 with the lone double-header weekend scheduled for the K1 Circuit in Winchester, California. Entry is set to begin in mid-July.