Pro Karting - Giebler Wins TaG Senior Feature At SKUSA ProKart West Coast Shootout
BUTTONWILLOW, Aug. 18, 2011: Phil Giebler led all 20 laps en route to victory in the TaG Senior main event in the Superkarts! USA ProKart Challenge West Coast Shootout at Buttonwillow Raceway Park on Saturday (Aug. 13).
The Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year from Huntington Beach, Calif., finished 2.239 seconds ahead of Mason Marotta of Carmel, Calif.
“There was a lot of competition in this event with the top drivers from the West Coast showing up,” Giebler said. “The kart ran well and I was able to get a good start and get into the lead and go from there.”
Giebler, driving a FA Kart powered by a 125cc-water cooled Vortex engine on MG Tires, earned his starting position on the outside of the front row by qualifying third, finishing third in the first heat and winning the second. Giebler had the main event’s fastest lap, 49.667-seconds, an average speed of 50.013 mph on the .69-mile track.
Phil Giebler Racing teammate Chris Cricca of Simi Valley, Calif., had the fastest lap in TaG Senior qualifying at 48.526-seconds, 51.189 mph to sit on the pole for the first heat.
“It was a great result for him and our team,” Giebler said.
Cricca was tapped from behind on the start and finished 13th at the end of the first lap. He climbed to eighth in the 10-lap heat. Cricca finished sixth in the second heat. Giebler led all 10 laps in it. Cricca finished sixth in the main event.
PGR’s Mason Daughters of Polo, Mo., had a solid day, finishing fourth in the feature despite carburetor problems. Daughters qualified sixth fastest, was fourth in the first heat and second in the second.
Vatche Tatikian of North Hollywood, Calif., finished third in the S3 main. He qualified 10th. He fell out on the opening lap of the first heat and rebounded to finish seventh in the second heat.
“Vatche hung on tough to finish third on a very physical track,” Giebler said. “The track temperature was over 120 degrees and ambient was 108 and it took a toll on the drivers.”
Steve Wiener of Chula Vista, Calif., took ninth in the TaG Master main event. PGR teammate Paul Grey of Mission Viejo, Calif., who was making his ProKart debut, was running third with 14 of 20 laps completed when a mechanical failure took him out.
Grey qualified in sixth spot, Wiener in 12th. Grey was eighth in the first heat and Wiener ninth. Wiener finished fourth in the second heat and Grey was fifth.
Noah Grey of Dana Point, Calif., finished ninth in the TaG Cadet main event. He was running fourth on the 10th of 15 laps, but was knocked off the track in a racing incident. Grey was ninth fastest in qualifying, but fell out after completing one lap in the first heat. He drove up to seventh in the second heat.
“Noah’s bad luck streak continued,” Giebler said. “He was running very strong in the final and chasing down the leaders before the incident put him off the track.”
Phil Giebler Racing, based in Orange, Calif., races with FA Karts and on MG Tires. Giebler, Cricca, Daughters, Steve Wiener and Tatikian used 125cc water-cooled Vortex engines built by Daniel Patino’s D-Power. Paul Grey used a PRD by Hyper Racing Engines. Noah Grey used a 60cc Vortex MiniRok built by D-Power.