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eKartingNews.com Driver Rankings - TaG - April 1, 2013

Unlike the eKartingNews.com Driver Rankings for Stock Moto, the TaG standings has seen some shuffling throughout the 400 drivers including in the first release for the 2013 season. A number of big events have already taken place, with the completion of the Rotax Challenge of the Americas and the Florida Winter Tour in the first three months. The WKA Manufacturers Cup Series got underway back in December in Daytona, and the SKUSA California ProKart Challenge already has two events in the books. This has led to a number of drivers jostling for position in the standings, including the number one position.

It’s no surprise to find Phil DeLaO at the top of the first release of the EKN Driver Rankings for TaG. The Arizona driver won the Rotax Challenge of the Americas and SKUSA Pro Tour titles in 2012, and finished the year fourth in the standings. Adding a couple wins this winter running with KartSport North America/Arrow against strong fields in the COTA program, he’s jumped to the top spot. Now he’s primed to defend his Pro Tour title, carrying the #1 SKUSA plate on the familiar Top Kart USA machine. Former number one Mason Chelootz (Top Kart) falls to just second, losing only 83 points from his 2012 total. While the Texan is planning to compete in cars this year, he also has a limited karting schedule that could keep him challenging for the top spot still.

Jumping up to third to start the season is California Louie Pagano. The long-time Birel driver finished runner-up this winter at the Rotax COTA program, highlighted by a last to second run in Phoenix. His former teammate Daniel Formal followed suit as he is now fourth in the standings. The 2012 US Rotax Grand Nationals champion put in a stellar winter season aboard his Tony Kart, earning the vice-champion position at the FWT behind the current Rotax Grand Finals champion. Holding ground in fifth is Ohio’s Sam Beasley. Making the move to OGP/Tony Kart for the Florida Winter Tour, he showed speed but came away with mixed results.

Chris Wehrheim (Top Kart) ended the 2012 season in second, but begins 2013 down in sixth with uncharacteristic results at WKA Daytona KartWeek. Former US Rotax Grand Nationals champ Nick Neri (Tony Kart) is the first to break into the top-10, starting out the season in seventh. Neri was third in points at the FWT with one win to his credit. Tony Kart driver Jonathan Kotyk moves two positions up to eighth gain 37 points in the races he contested in Florida over the past three months.

Also joining the top-10 this month is Andrew Palmer and Jake Craig. Palmer (Kosmic) used the geographical factor of going to school in California to tackle the Rotax COTA on the west coast this winter, placing sixth in the standings with one podium finish. Craig had similar results, placing fourth in the standings and ending the year with on the podium. He also has started out the California PKC with a win at the most recent event, as the 2011 SKUSA Pro Tour TaG Junior champion is enjoying his second season in the Senior ranks.

TaG Driver Rankings Top-10
Pos.Dec. 23Plus/MinusDriverRacesScore
1.43Phil DeLaO117295
2.1-1Mason Chelootz247274
3.74Louie Pagano107273
4.84Daniel Formal137267
5.5NCSam Beasley157239
6.2-4Chris Wehrheim157224
7.114Nick Neri147214
8.102Jonathan Kotyk237161
9.2213Andrew Palmer87132
10.2010Jake Craig137102

For the full TaG Driver Rankings, Click Here


NEW TaG #1 - Phil DeLaO
Peoria, Arizona


Phil DeLaO (Photo: Sean Buur - Go Racing Magazine)
Phil DeLaO
(Photo: Sean Buur - Go Racing Magazine)

It was a strong 2012 season for Phil DeLaO. Beginning with the Rotax COTA title in the winter, he backed it up with the championship on the SKUSA Pro Tour program and a win at the Rotax Pan American Challenge. The only blemish on his CV last year was getting wrecked at the SuperNationals, and bad luck at the Rotax Grand Finals. He was offered a ride at PKRA for the COTA, where he scored a victory and carried it to CalSpeed where he won his second race of the season. Those boosted him into the number one position as he begins his SKUSA Pro Tour title defense.

Point Breakdown
SKUSA SpringNationals ’12 #1911069
SKUSA SpringNationals ’12 #2911058
SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #1941020
SKUSA SummerNationals ’12 #2921043
Rotax Pan American Challenge 2012911026
Rotax COTA 2013 - PKRA #2911056
Rotax COTA 2013 - CalSpeed #1911023

Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 1.57
Average Points: 1042.1
Total Points: 7295


TaG ‘On the Move’ - Alex Keyes
Folsom, California


Alex Keyes (Photo: dromophotos.com)
Alex Keyes
(Photo: dromophotos.com)

The past few seasons have seen a number of young drivers move into the Senior ranks with great success early on, many of which have or are currently toward the top of the EKN Driver Rankings. The next name that we could see move into the top-10 this year is Senior rookie Alex Keyes. The California transplant via Michigan has moved up and has found success early. His California ProKart Challenge debut resulted in a win, at a track he’s never seen and aboard the TaG Senior package for the first time. He backed it up with a second place at the next round, against some of the largest fields the series has witnessed. It will be interesting to see how Keyes progresses this season.

Point Breakdown
Rotax COTA 2013 - Tucson #1914907
Rotax COTA 2013 - Tucson #2941011
SKUSA California PKC ’13 #1911045
Rotax COTA 2013 - PKRA #1913931
Rotax COTA 2013 - PKRA #2911951
SKUSA California PKC ’13 #2921032
Rotax COTA 2013 - CalSpeed #2915880

Inside the Stats
Average Finish: 8.57
Average Points: 965.3
Total Points: 6756

EKN Driver Rankings Calculation Process
The EKN Driver Rankings are calculated using a driver’s best finishes in major North American races. Assembled using events from the previous 12 months from the current date, we use a driver’s best seven finishes in TaG and six in Stock Moto to determine their overall current point total. With each new release, results posted from more than one year ago are discarded. To deliver our ranking list, we tabulate the results of all the national programs and selected regional programs. We have included the results for the major one-off events such as the SKUSA SuperNationals, the US Rotax Max Challenge Grand Nationals, the Rock Island Grand Prix and the Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix.

Each race is initially weighted based on the prestige and history of the event or series with a score of ten (10) being the highest attainable base ranking. For 2013, the SKUSA SuperNationals and US Rotax Max Challenge Grand Nationals receive a score of 10 in their initial weighting in the TaG category while the SuperNationals is the lone event in the Stock Moto division. The SKUSA Pro Tour series events draw a base ranking of nine (9), while the WKA Manufacturers Cup, Florida Winter Tour, Rotax Challenge of the Americas, IKF 2-Cycle Sprint Grand Nationals, Rotax Pan American Challenge, United States Pro Kart Series and other regional program races were given a base ranking of either eight (8) or nine (9).

The EKN staff reserves the right to adjust the rankings of each event throughout the year. A minimum entry total for any events considered for the Driver Rankings program is five (5). If an event does not have at least five (5) drivers starting the race, those results will not be tabulated toward the Driver Rankings.

Added to these initial rankings are two variables that help confirm the true importance of an event to the ranking process – field size and field strength. A percentage of one weighting point is added for the size of the field, while the number of existing top 50 drivers entered offers another full point or fraction of a point. The sum of these numbers becomes the overall ranking for any race. Following a race, drivers receive points based on their finishing positions with 100 points earned for a win. Each subsequent position drops by one point with 99 points given to the second place driver and so on throughout the field. These points are then multiplied by the overall ranking to produce a driver’s final point total from each event. Using a driver’s best seven races in TaG, six for Stock Moto, we calculate each driver’s overall score and subsequent ranking.
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