CONCORD, N.C. – The 2012 WKA RLV Tuned Exhaust Products Gold Cup Series closed its 2012 season this past weekend with the GT Machine Grand Nationals at a new venue for the 4-cycle sprint tour, the New Jersey Motorsports Park’s Avenger Circuit.
Approximately 200 entries filled the New Jersey pit area for the last WKA national sprint event of the season, many of them Mid-Atlantic-based teams that welcomed the shorter drive for the fifth and final event of the tour.
One of those Mid-Atlantic racers, Galena, Md., driver Jacob Heavlow, left Jersey as the top winner on the weekend. Heavlow wheeled his Arrow to victories in the three Junior main events.
Heavlow bested Douglas Barnes Jr. to win Barnes Paving Jr Lite. New York Coyote racer Jake Lutz ran second to Heavlow in Thor Oil Jr Medium, while Barnes followed Heavlow across the stripe in Jr Heavy.
Ironically, Heavlow opened the season sweeping the three Junior classes at Jacksonville and proceeded to go winless at rounds two, three and four before coming back to win the three divisions at New Jersey. Heavlow wheeled three different chassis makes during the year – a Bandit, MGM and Arrow.
Former Manufacturers Cup TaG winner Arie Ouimet made an unexpected Gold Cup appearance at New Jersey. Ouimet, a driving instructor at NJMP, was hired to wheel the familiar Coyote Motorsports No. 24. Ouimet promptly put the kart in victory lane with his win in Friday night’s Animal Heavy Money Race. Ouimet scored the Money Race victory by a comfortable margin over MGM racers Zach Linsell and Ryan Bennett.
Ouimet backed up his Money Race triumph with a win in Sunday’s Stock Medium feature. Ouimet captured the Grand National triumph over Travis Manning and Linsell. Gary Lawson and Dylan Zobkiw rounded out the top five in the 16-kart field.
Cale Hall concluded his national championship season with a weekend sweep of the Michigan Kart Supply LO206 Kid Kart finals. Hall won both races over Dalton Smith and Zac Fowler. Cale won six Kid Kart finals this year to become the first-ever Gold Cup LO206 Kid Kart national champion.
Wisconsin racer Gabriel Zellner raced his Arrow to the pair of Sportsman 1 Animal feature wins. Zellner bested Zach Wells and Jason Alder to win Performance North Sportsman 1 Lite. On Sunday, Zellner finished a cool 4.7 seconds ahead of Wells and Joshua Stark in the Sportsman 1 Heavy 16-lap feature.
Cody Hall and Zach Wells split the Sportsman 1 Box Stock main events. Hall triumphed Final 1 over Matthew Miller and Wells won Sunday’s Final 2 over Hall and Miller.
Georgia racer Dylan Murry captured a couple of Sportsman 2 wins. Murry won Barnes Paving Sportsman 2 Heavy by a close 0.173-second margin over Tyler Frantz. Trent Barnes and Connor Tebbe were a close third and fourth.
Murry also won the Sportsman 2 Box Stock Final 1 race on Saturday. The Razor pilot won over fellow Georgia racer Connor Tebbe and Austin Schulz.
Trent Barnes beat out Murry to win the American Power Sports Sportsman 2 Lite feature. Tebbe was third. And Schulz was the winner of Sunday’s Sportsman 2 Box Stock Final 2.
Coyote racer Tim Stiefel closed out his dominating year in the Masters divisions with a sweep of the weekend at Jersey. After not winning either Masters race at the Jacksonville opener, Stiefel went on a tear to win seven of the eight features between rounds two through five.
Ohio driver Sarah Luoma closed her best Gold Cup season to date with her second win in a row in Roberts Kart Shop / Razor Chassis Restricted Junior. Luoma wheeled her Coyote to the win over Ryan Bavineau and Dustin Demattia.
MGM racer Chris Wells scored his second win of the year in Coyote Motorsports Stock Lite. Wells won over Ouimet and Linsell. Wells also won the national championship in the Lite class.
Ryan Bennett captured his first win of the season in MGM Stock Heavy. Bennett wheeled his MGM to the victory over Tyler Sandmeyer and Eric Fagan.
Travis Manning gave MGM another victory in Margay Racing Products Animal Amateur Medium. Manning scored the victory over Bennett and Tony Wells.
Two-cycle X-30 TaG winners were Dustin Stross, Mike Giessen and Mark Boos. Stross swept the X-30 Junior main events and Giessen and Boos were winners in X-30 Senior.
After the Box Stock divisions have seen solid entry counts throughout the 2012 season, Matt Horst and Tanner Lee were the only Clone entrants in Jr and Sr Box Stock to make the trip to New Jersey. Horst won Sr Box Stock and Lee won Jr Box Stock.
Razor Chassis won its second straight Manufacturers Championship, which goes to the chassis make with the most feature wins on the season.
WKA RLV Gold Cup point standings will be updated next week on WorldKarting.com.
A full race report of the GT Machine Grand Nationals from New Jersey will be in an upcoming issue of WKA’s Karting Scene magazine.