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Rotax Max New York State Championship
Quick Driver InfoHometown
Highest Race Finish:
Current Competition Vehicle(s)
Current Personal Vehicle
2007 Lotus Elise
Favorite Car Brand
2010 Race ScheduleRace 1: Saturday April 24th
Race 2: Sunday April 25th
Race 3: Saturday August 28th
Race 4: Sunday August 29th
Race 5: Saturday October 23rd
Race 6: Sunday October 24th
Michael first tasted speed when he participated in a session of Formula 101 which put new drivers into a Formula 2000 car on a SCCA SoloII track. Michael finished mid pack but was encouraged to further develop his skills. Michael then enrolled in Bridgestone driving schools in the Poconos, PA and Shannonville, Ontario, Canada. It was during these classes that Michael was introduced to karting.
Michael began karting in 1998 in the Briggs 4-Cycle Light class. He spent his first three years honing his racing skills at Oakland Valley Raceway Park, in Cuddybackville, NY. He finished third, second and second in the club championships in those three years. In 2001 Michael moved up to race the New York regionals in the 4-Cycle light class where he again finished second in the championship.
Michael then spent the next two years competing at select karting events. In 2004, he moved up to the Rotax class running a 125 cc, 2-Stroke motor where he finished third in the championship. The following two years he participated in select regional races.
In 2010 Michael is returning to competitive racing by competing in the New York State Rotax series. This six race series will be held at Oakland Valley Raceway Park in Cuddybackville, NY. Michael looks to use this series as a spring board to begin a more ambitious karting and racing future.
Michael currently resides in Enfield Connecticut with his wife Heather and daughter Abbey.
Races 1 & 2
The first two races of the 2010 New York Regionals were held at Oakland Valley Raceway Park in Cuddebackville, NY on Saturday and Sunday, April 24th and 25th. After having been away from the Rotax series for almost four years, Michael was eager to get back to the track and shake off the cobwebs.
Friday was open practice and Michael used this day to familiarize himself with the spec Mojo tires as well as chassis setup and driver conditioning. In addition to normal testing that was planned, there was a lot of work involved with adding the newly required rear bumper to the kart. This required the fabrication of new mounting brackets for both the bumper as well as the exhaust. The testing went according to plan for the most part. But having been away from karting for as long as Michael had been, his neck was suffering.“By late afternoon I was unable to hold my head in place as I drove out of the box turn towards the uphill. This was affecting my driving and my ability to tune the kart,” Michael commented at the end of practice. “But all in all I think it was a great day and I made good steps in understanding the tires and finding a good set up. I just need to work on my neck. Indoor karting is one thing but the grip here is on a totally different level and I’m certainly feeling it tonight.”
Race 1- Oakland Valley Race Park (OVRP)
24th of April, 2010
Morning practice went well for Michael and he was feeling confident for the day’s racing. During the driver’s meeting Michael learned that Saturday’s main race would be 35 laps long. Still feeling the effects of Friday practice on his neck, 35 laps (along with 16 laps in the pre-final) seemed like a daunting task. After the five minute qualifier Michael finished P9 out of 11 about 1.2 seconds off the pace. “I just didn’t get the most out of the kart. I went the wrong way with the jetting and I could feel that I was slow down the straight.”
It was late afternoon before Michael was able to get back onto the track for the heat race. Starting at the back of the pack allowed Michael to miss some of the chaos at the start of the race. By lap two Michael had made up three positions and was looking to move further up when he lost the chain on lap three. “Totally frustrated! I thought the chain looked loose but I didn’t want to mess with it because so far it was working wonderfully,” exclaimed Michael.
Because of the large number of laps and classes, Michael’s final didn’t start until almost 9 PM on Saturday night. The conditions had changed significantly by that time. “The warm up lap was quite tricky and in some ways I was happy to start in the back. This gave me a chance to back off and let everyone else take each other out at the start.” After the bumping and grinding at the start, Michael slowly worked his way forward finishing P6 in his class. “I thought the race would never end. But I found a good rhythm and just focused on finishing. I think P6 is a good result, especially after being away for so long,” Michael cheerfully commented after the race.
Race 2- Oakland Valley Race Park (OVRP)
25th of April, 2010
All the testing and setup work was thrown out the window Sunday morning when Michael awoke to rain. Although Michael enjoys racing in the rain he would have preferred to continue to develop the tires and chassis based on the lessons learned Friday and Saturday. Michael struggled with understeer in both practice sessions and ultimately crashed out of practice 2. “I just was trying too hard and left my braking just a meter too deep. I got on the calipers, the wheels locked and I was a passenger from then on out.”
Unfortunately for Michael, by the time qualifying rolled around, the rain had stopped but the track was not dry enough for slicks. Michael made some quick adjustments before qualifying and posted the 8th quickest time. “I kept the kart on the track and just tried to improve lap to lap. Overall, no complaints,” commented Michael after qualifying. The weather kept up the challenge by raining then stopping. This allowed the track to start to dry and then the rain would come again.
Michael made the most of his start in the heat race by picking up two more positions to start the final in P6. By the time Michael’s class gridded for their final, tire choice was a real gamble. There was a dry line forming on the racing line. But offline there were still damp spots and puddles to contend with. Also, the skies looked threatening and the threat of showers was imminent. Michael, along with half the grid gambled on rain tires while the remainder of the class went with slicks.
The race started with a big collision in front of Michael. He maneuvered through the chaos to find himself in P3. “I got a great start. I knew we didn’t get our tires up to temp and there was a lot of eagerness to get the race started. I backed off and it was totally the right call. I couldn’t believe I was in third place.” What Michael needed more than speed was rain. Rain that never came. “I knew on lap three that I made the wrong call. I was shedding rubber off the tires and there was nothing I could do.”
But that led to some great battles as the slick shod karts began to move forward once their tires came up to temperature. In the end Michael again finished sixth in class. “No regrets. If it rained during the race I would have been a hero,” lamented Michael after the race.