There was a fantastic turnout for the October round of our Challenge GP indoor karting series at K1 Speed Irvine, with no fewer than 40 drivers showing up to compete. Not surprisingly, the group had to be split up into separate fields to accommodate the sheer number of competitors, as even with the Super Track configuration being utilized at our Irvine indoor kart track in Orange County, we simply couldn't allow 40 drivers on the grid at one time! After the qualifying sessions were complete, the drivers were placed into three different racing groups based on their performance: the A Main, B Main and C Main grids.
Regular competitor Khalifa Alasiri qualified on the pole position in the A Main after setting the fast lap at our indoor kart racing center, but lost several spots during the race. Though Khalifa was able to recover and still finish on the podium, he was unable to regain his 1st place position, eventually finishing the race in a very respectable 3rd. Toby Rodriguez, who is always at the front of the pack and has won his fair share of Challenge GP races in the past, battled with David Messimer (Mr. Kawasaki) for the win all race long after Khalifa lost his position at the front. Despite the pressure from behind, David was able to maintain composure and a clean defensive racing line, and finish the race in 1st place against some very talented drivers. Needless to say, David can be proud of his win this weekend and we look forward to seeing what he brings to the next event on November 1st!
In the B Main, Sean Thomas found himself in close combat with the father-and-son team of Jordan and Stephen Robertson, who had traveled north from San Diego to compete in the event. Despite their best efforts though, the Robertsons were unable to make a pass, and the trio crossed the finish line in order. The real story of the B Main took place farther back in the field, as several drivers - Patty Kuykendall, Nick Gomez and Nia Huynh - were swapping positions throughout the race. Nia was able to make his way up as high as 4th place, despite competing in his very first Challenge GP event, but eventually spun out after a slight collision and lost his position. If his performance from this weekend is any indication though, we expect to see Nia competing for the win at our next event.
There were a lot of new faces in the C-Main, and the race produced some of the closest battles of the day. Surprisingly, first-time K1 Speed competitor Ahmad Al Dubaikhi was able to finish on the podium after a strong performance that netted him a 3rd place finishing position. With a strong first outing, we would not be surprised to see Ahmad make his way up to the A-Main in the near future. Nick Heredia was able to win the C-Main ahead of Brian Hull, who slotted in-between Nick and Ahmad to finish in 2nd place.
If you would like to compete head-to-head against some of the best indoor karters in Southern California, head to K1 Speed Irvine on Sunday, November 1st for the next round of the Challenge GP karting league. Whether you're a veteran racer or you have always wanted to experience wheel-to-wheel racing, the Challenge GP kart racing series at K1 Speed is an affordable and convenient way to become involved in motorsport.