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TPKC 2018 DKC(Photo: Ken Johnson - studio52.us)

Jaramillo, Hewitt and Jeffers star in exciting season finale

Heading into the final round of the Texas ProKart Challenge at the Dallas Karting Complex, the forecast was ominous with rain tagged from Thursday to Monday. The expected precipitation hit hard on Friday and Saturday, dumping on the facility on Friday night and then hitting hard again on Saturday afternoon. Thankfully, even with flooding around the track and in the surrounding region, Sunday morning dawned dry and clear, which led to a solid day of competition. The SKUSA regional champions would be crowned, and for those in the X30 and Mini Swift categories which will likely be the class open to 80+ entries, the free pass to the main events at the SuperNationals – known as the Guaranteed SuperSunday Starting Spots – would be locked in.

TPKC 2018 DKC Jack Jeffers 768x512Jack Jeffers won the battle in Mini Swift
(Photo: Ken Johnson – studio52.us)
The Mindshift Financial Mini Swift category led the rotation throughout the weekend, and they were the first to hit the track on Sunday morning for qualifying. For the most part, the track was dry from the Saturday rains but there were still areas where water wicked up from under the asphalt. The short shute between turns 14 and 15 was wet all day, making it a spotlight corner during each and every session. With everyone on Evinco slicks, this would be the key point on the track all day, separating the field into those who could handle the wet section and the run through turn 15 and those who could not. Alex Stanfield (Energy) picked up the tricky turn 15 racing line quickly and qualified on the pole, and he went on to win the Prefinal, as well. In the 15-lap main event, a tremendous four-kart battle ensued as Jack Jeffers (Benik), Chase Gardner (VemmeKart) and Aden Rudolph (Birel ART) were embroiled in the scrap. Stanfield led the entire race until final lap as Jeffers closed to make a bid for the win. With new pressure from behind, Stanfield ran a defensive line into the double-apex left-hand turn 10 and Jeffers ran a wide entry to get inside the leader heading into second apex, taking over the point for good in turn 12. Stanfield remained under pressure as Gardner was right there as well, making a quick move to the inside on the entry into T15 after running through the water stream. Stanfield had pushed wide slightly and opened the door, and Gardner filled it quickly with minimal contact. Stanfield kept the forward bite to hold off Rudolph for the final step on the podium. With Jeffers and Gardner finishing 1-2, Stanfield’s third place result was more than enough to cap off the best season of his young career with the Texas PKC Mini Swift championship.

Read more: EKN Trackside: 2018 Texas ProKart Challenge – Dallas Karting Complex

TPKC 2018 Amarillo(Photo: Ken Johnson - studio52.us)

 French sweeps S1, while Musgrave doubles in X30 Senior in extreme heat

The Texas ProKart Challenge made its second trek to West Texas last weekend and the racing was exciting from start to finish on the challenging 12-turn Amarillo Kart Circuit. Dallas Karting Complex lead pilot Jake French notched both wins in the S1 Pro Stock Honda class, topping the combined shifter field in the program that included the likes of Billy Musgrave, Hunter Pickett and Christian Bird. As EKN’s #1 ranked shifter driver, Musgrave battled French in the gearbox events, but he also competed in the X30 Senior class and came away with a pair of impressive victories over the top single-speed karters in Texas. A total of six race groups took to the track over the weekend, and other drivers earning the sweep included Max Hewitt (S2), Nathan Stewart (S4) and Branyon Tiner (X30 Junior).

The event presented the fourth and fifth rounds of the six-race Texas PKC series, and was only the second organized competition event at the Amarillo Kart Circuit, which was built by local surgeon Thane Morgan. The driver feedback on the track was extremely positive. The track is truly the West Texas’ version of the ‘Field of Dreams’, and the arrival of the TPKC certainly plays to the famous line – ‘if you build it, they will come’.

TPKC 2018 Amarillo Jake French 768x512Jake French dominated the shifterkart race group all weekend (Photo: Ken Johnson – studio52.us)Unfortunately, the TPKC date coinciding with the tail end of a record-setting heat wave in Amarillo, pushing the series staff, the drivers and the teams with 100+ degree temps all weekend. The first half of the days were run in the 90s, but the temp topped out later in the day at 103 or 104 degrees. Thankfully, the winds of West Texas helped to offset the heat, making it bearable, albeit hot. Copious amounts of water, paired with man-made shade in the form of EZUps and umbrellas, kept everyone in shape for racing and spectating.

Read more: EKN Trackside: 2018 Texas ProKart Challenge – Amarillo Report

TPKC 2018 NTKPhoto: Ken Johnson - Studio52.us
Baker and Hewitt star for CRG Nordam under the lights in Denton

June 12, 2018 by Rob Howden

When it comes to the high heat of a Texas summer, running in the cooler evening temperatures under the lights is always a wise approach. The Texas ProKart Challenge targeted their June 7-9 weekend for just such an night outing, and North Texas Kartway in Denton provided the ideal venue. The half-mile, nine-turn track is an iconic facility that simply comes alive when its lights are fired up, and the racing was stellar thanks to the multiple overtaking opportunities offered by the layout. The event featured Thursday night practice that led into Friday and Saturday night races, and while the temps at the start of each afternoon’s schedule were around 95°F, once the sun set, a more comfortable 85°F was the norm. The Texas PKC program has developed a strong foundation of racers and teams, and the paddock was filled with national level stars and young emerging talent. Of all those in the paddock, the CRG Nordam team had a superb outing, winning six races at the hands of Brenden Baker, Max Hewitt, Rod Clinard and new recruit Tyler Gonzalez.

TPKC 2018 NTK Brenden Baker 300x200Brenden Baker scored victory in the X30 Senior category (Photo Ken Johnson - Studio52.us)Baker, the veteran national and regional competitor, took the Friday win in the Woltjer Racing Engines X30 Senior class, battling with fellow CRG driver Kaden Gray and Tony Kart pilot Alejandro Jaramillo. Gray was on top of his game all weekend, qualifying on pole before taking the Prefinal win. Despite Gray’s initial pace, Baker was too much in the main and he rolled to a 3.202-second win over his teammate. Jaramillo pressured Gray for a majority of the 30-lap shootout, but he had to settle for a solid third. John Berry (Tony Kart) finished fourth ahead of Pablo Perez De Lara (Tony Kart).

Read more: EKN Trackside: 2018 Texas ProKart Challenge – North Texas Kartway Report

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The following shall be instituted immediately and will remain permanently as part of the Texas ProKart rules package.

Post-Race Contact

At the conclusion of each on-track session, after crossing the finish line; all competitors must slow their speed while making their way to the scale line. Any competitor who makes contact with another racer shall be penalized.

Penalty Assessed
Practice or Warm-up           - Loss of next scheduled on track session
Qualifying or Competition   - DQ/loss of points for the session

Texas ProKart Challenge Sticker Placement

All karts participating in a TPKC event must have a Texas ProKart sticker mounted on the front fairing. Stickers will be provided to you at registration.

Registration opens on Friday, May 11 for TPKC rounds 2 and 3 at North Texas Karters, Denton Texas. Join us for some awesome night racing, June 7-9

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tpkc champions

The 2018 TPKC championship battles are expected to be fierce across all categories.

The champions in the X30 Senior, X30 Junior, X30 Master and Mini Swift classes will all receive guaranteed SuperSunday starting positions for the 2018 SKUSA SuperNationals next fall. These passes are tremendously valuable considering the level of competition in Las Vegas.

Texas ProKart will also offer three entry tickets to the 2018 SuperNationals, drawing one champion from three unique class groupings. These tickets are valued at $1100 each and include entry fee and race tires!

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