2011 RMCGF: Ouellette champion and Team Canada 2nd
26 November 2011
Big deception for Team Canada when our driver with the best place on the grid just lost his chain on second lap and had to give-up. Then, Alex Guénette took the relay and finished 11th after he started 25th. Artem Korolev finished 16th, Olivier Bédard, 23rd and Jesse Lazare was officially 32nd.
Up to now this week, the man to beat on the track was South African Christiano Morgado. Scott Campbell was starting just beside him on the first row. They both had a good start and they battle during the race for the 1st place. Scott was mainly 2nd all race long when he was pushed out of the racing line by another competitor. He finished 4th. Stuart Clark, 18th on the grid, crashed at the start and finished 27th while David Ivichek, when from 30th to 14th.
Only two Canadian drivers in this class. Marco DiLeo started 18th but had to give-up on the second lap when he bent his rear axle. Steven Szigeti went from 27th on the grid to 18th at the checkered flag, a gain of 9 positions.
The battle was very hard in this class and Pier-Luc Ouellette finally won the race over another Canadian fellow, Nicholas Latifi. We will have a Canadian first row for the final race. Well done for Christophe Boisclair who finally found the right set-ups. He started 24th and finished 8th, taking the second fastest lap of the race. Three other Canadians finished in the top 20: Kyle Herder (16th), Darren White (19th) and Tyler McEwan (20th).
After the prefinal races, Team Canada was leading the Nations Cup.
During lunch break, the drivers took part to the traditional drivers parade where they receive a medal as a souvenir.
Alex Guénette was first Canadian on the grid. After the first corner, he was 4th! Other drivers behind were pushing very hard and few contacts pushed him back up to position 12. Finally, Olivier Bédard passed him to finish 11th just in from of Guénette. Jesse Lazare finished 17th after he started 32nd and Artem Korolev also finished in the top 20 with a 19th place finish. The 2011 champion is Ukyo Sasahara, from Japan, the same who won the 2009 title in Egypt.
We were hoping to see Scott Campbell succeed to keep his world title. Unfortunately for him, a contact with Dennis Kroes from The Netherlands put an end to his race before the first corner. His wheel hub broke in two pieces! The best result for a Canadian came from Stuart Clark with a 9th place, followed by David Ivichek, 16th. Scott Campbell was placed 30th. The new DD2 Masters champion is Christiano Morgado, from South Africa.
Early in the race, we had no doubt about that British driver Ben Cooper will be the new Rotax Max champion. He led the race from the start to the finish line. Marco Di Leo did a spectacular race when he started 32nd and finished 8th. Steven Szigeti 24th.
Last race of the event was the DD2 race. Team Canada was in good position to take the win with a all Canadian first row. Pier-Luc Ouellette was starting on pole with Nicholas Latifi beside. This final race was the most exciting final race of the event. All way long, Ouellette and Latifi were in the top 3. At the beginning of the final lap, Ouellette was first and Latifi third but the leading pack was very close. Unfortunately for Latifi, he was punt out of the racing line in the second corner and his dream to climb and the podium vanished at the same time. Ouellette crossed the finish line first, only 6 hundredth of a second before Australian driver Jason Pringle and 2 tenths before Georg Vann, from Estonia. Kyle Herder finished 6th, followed by Nicholas Latifi 7th, Christophe Boisclair 13th, Tyler Mc Ewan 25th and Darren White 28th.
Team Canada was amongst the leaders for the Nations Cup for the entire event. Australia finally won over Canada while South Africa finished 3rd. The top finishers for each country had the honour to climb on the podium. For Canada, Olivier Bédard (junior), Marco Di Leo (senior), Stuart Clark (DD2-Masters) and of course Pier-Luc Ouellette (DD2) had this honour.
The 2012 Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals will take place from November 27th to December 1st on the superb kart track in Portimao, Portugal. To see their website here.
A second photo gallery from the event is available here. We will publish a final gallery soon.
Test and pictures: Patrick Moreau