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Ignite Challenge Series Finale Race Recap – Gateway Kartplex

St. Louis, MO –  (October 15, 2019) – The Briggs & Stratton 206 powered spec Ignite Challenge Series wrapped up its season at the Gateway Kartplex just outside St. Louis, Missouri last Saturday. A record turnout of (96) total entries took the green flag across 6 different classes on the newly constructed track extension. To surprise of the drivers, the series welcomed guest flagman, Jason Burgess to the stand. Stay tuned later this fall for the 2020 Ignite Challenge Series schedule.

Ignite Rookie

The points race between Lane Mayer and Isaac Wells heated up into the finale with Isaac’s late season charge to get into championship contention. The pair of drivers would mimic lap times in qualifying with Wells edging Mayer by only 0.014 seconds. In the first feature, Wells would have a slow start through the first few corners but was still able to hold off the field. Mayer would latch onto Wells’ rear bumper through the entirety of the race. With neither driver making mistakes, they would remain 1-2 across the line. Wells took the win, inches ahead of Mayer with Louis Palmisano rounding the podium.

In the second feature, both Wells and Mayer would start on the front row. Both drivers remained 1-2 until the middle portion of the race. Wells would have an on-track altercation with a lapped driver sending him into a spin which would collect Mayer in the incident, preventing him from finishing the race. Wells would end up winning the feature with Louis Palmisano and Owen Elders completing the podium. Mayer would have enough of a point gap to take his second Ignite Challenge championship.

Ignite Junior

The Ignite Junior class has been dominated by the #9 of Reid Sweeney all season. Sweeney would continue his domination by setting a pole time for the first feature. Kartplex driver, Nolan Baltz was able to match his race-pace in the first feature, but it was not enough to capture the win against Sweeney. Jake Coalter completed the first feature’s podium. Baltz’s fast time was good enough for the pole of the second feature. Sweeney would take the lead early as Baltz and Jaiden Beckman battled for the second position. Sweeney would take the second feature win with Baltz and Beckman finishing second and third. Sweeney completed the Ignite Challenge Series with a clean sweep, capturing all ten wins and taking his second consecutive Ignite Challenge championship.

Ignite Senior

The closest points-race of the series was between Evan Stamer and Hunter Richardson. Both drivers have raced hard, trading wins through the season. In qualifying, Kartplex driver Bobby Krug upset the field by taking the pole over Justin Vancil, Stamer and Richardson by 0.078 seconds. Krug would lead the field in the opening few laps of the first feature until Stamer made the inside pass into the new turn 1 hairpin. The next lap, Richardson would make the same pass on Krug to take the second position. Following closely into the hairpin, Richardson would make a mistake putting both himself and Stamer into a half spin and collecting Krug as well. As the drivers struggled to continue, all three were shuffled down the pack giving Justin Vancil the lead of the race. Vancil and Dylan Ellsworth would pull away from the field and trade the lead. In the end, it was Justin Vancil who would take his second Ignite Challenge victory of the season by 0.223 seconds. Spike Kohlbecker would round the podium.

Stamer and Richardson’s fast laps from the first feature would reward them with a front-row starting position in the second feature. Stamer would take the early lead while Richardson struggled to find the pace to keep up with the leader. Richardson would spend the race defending against Ellsworth, Vancil and Krug to keep his podium slot. It would be Stamer that would take the final Ignite Senior win of the season by 2.572 seconds over Richardson. Dylan Ellsworth would complete the podium inches behind Richardson. Stamer’s victory would be more than enough to capture his first Ignite Challenge championship in Ignite Senior.

Ignite Masters

Brandin Moore would set the tone early capturing the feature one pole by 0.108 seconds over James Newbold. Moore would lead the first feature flag-to-flag with Newbold and points leader Ken Williams completing the podium. In the second feature, Moore would start on pole again after setting the fast lap and then stretched his lead even further over Newbold to take the feature two win. Moore’s second victory of the day was not enough to capture the championship, as Ken Williams would grab his second Ignite Masters championship in a row.

Ignite Heavy

Ignite Heavy had its largest field since its inception last season. Local driver, John Newlon, was able to win the first feature by 1.42 seconds over Craig Loddeke and Greg Mefford. In the second feature, Mefford took the win from Texas’ Chance Kelly and Quincy’s Zach Stice by over four seconds. Craig Loddeke would have a good enough race in the first feature to capture his first Ignite Challenge Championship.

Kid Kart Honda

Gus Mayer would win both the Kid Kart Honda features, but it was Grady Whicker who would prevail all season to capture the championship.

About Margay Racing:

Based in Saint Louis, MO, Margay Racing is the most successful sprint kart manufacturer in the United States, supporting drivers in all divisions of karting and producing winning karts for countless local, regional, and national champions. Now in its 55th year, Margay is owned by third-generation family member, Keith Freber. More information on Margay can be found at www.margay.com.