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Patrizi Catches Quarter Mile Fever

AKA media

A group of Australia’s elite kart racers got a dose of the ‘quarter mile fever’ ahead of this weekend’s (June 16/17) round of the CIK Stars of Karting Series presented by Castrol EDGE at the Ipswich Kart Club.

Patrizicorse Team Principal, and Tekno Autosports V8 Supercar driver, Michael Patrizi (right, pic) and Pro Gearbox (KZ2) championship leader Kyle Ensbey took to Willowbank Raceway aboard their KZ2 specification Top Karts on Saturday during the FUCHS Winternationals.

With the Winternationals annually attracting 38,000 fans across its four days, the display of karts – and subsequent demonstration on the drag strip – caught the eye of many onlookers.

When completing a pass of the quarter-mile strip, Patrizi stopped the timing clocks at the eighth-mile mark (the standard distance for smaller drag racing categories) at 7.595 seconds at 85.20 mph (137.12km/h).  Ensbey’s time was slightly behind his team leader with his best time being 8.097 seconds at 81.78 mph (131.61 km/h).

“I haven’t had so much fun in a kart for a long time,” said Patrizi.

“It was a huge buzz to be able to open the eyes of the drag racing industry and spectators to what these karts are capable of.  It was a bit of a guessing game to make sure we got off the line and down the strip, and with a few tweaks on the set-up there’s no doubt we could have gone even quicker.

Above: Patrizi firing down the strip aboard his Pro Gearbox (KZ2) kart
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“A big thanks must go to the management of both Willowbank Raceway and ANDRA for making this opportunity happen.  It was a great way to spread the word about karting and the CIK Stars of Karting series.”

Also on display on Sunday was the Energy kart of Chris Hays and the Arrow of Scott May with Hays and his mentor Jon Targett set to go head to head on the strip throughout the day.  Unfortunately, inclement weather – and the subsequent delays – led to the demonstration being cancelled.

“The display across the weekend, and the demonstration, was a huge success for the sport,” said Australian Karting Association’s Media & Marketing Manager Lee Hanatschek.

“To put karting in front of so many motorsport enthusiasts ahead of one of our major events at the adjacent Ipswich Kart Club is great.  The karts certainly generated a lot of interest.

“Big thanks must go to Steve Bettes, Tracey Fletcher and the team at Willowbank Raceway along with everyone at ANDRA who made this display and demonstration possible.”

A total of 132 entries have been received for round three of the CIK Stars of Karting with practice being held on Friday ahead of qualifying and the heat races on Sunday.   A pair of main events will be contested on Sunday.

The Ipswich Kart Club is located on Champions Way, Willobank.

Admission is Free for Spectators with catering available.  There will also be a jumping castle and face painting for the kids.

Above: Patrizi getting suited up for his run down the strip
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