National Karting Champs to be Crowned This Weekend

Kart racers from all across the United States have descended on Miller Motorsports Park this week for the U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals, one of the country’s most prestigious karting events.

The U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals, in its first visit to Utah, is the culmination of a season of racing in seven Rotax Max Challenge classes at 30 tracks across the nation. Competitors range in age from 7 to 65, with many of the younger competitors using karting as a springboard to a career as a professional racer. The vast majority of today’s professional racers got their start in karting.

The record field of 206 entrants for the U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals includes 10 racers from Utah, highlighting the growth of the sport in this state and Miller Motorsports Park’s influence on the sport since it opened in 2006. The class winners from this event will travel to Dubai in November, where they will represent Team USA against 62 other countries in the Rotax World Finals.

“We are proud to host such a prestigious event as the U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals," said John Larson, General Manager of Miller Motorsports Park. “It is very gratifying to see many of the racers who call Miller Motorsports Park their home track in this field of champions, and we hope that everyone will come out to see the professional racers of the future competing here this weekend."

“We are very happy to be at Miller Motorsports Park," said Garry Lobaugh, President of MaxSpeed, the company that operates the championship. “This is a world-class facility, and our teams appreciate the amenities and the hospitality of the staff. We’re looking forward to a great weekend of racing that will determine which drivers will represent the United States in the World Finals."

Teams have been practicing at the Miller Kart Track since Monday, with qualifying scheduled for Thursday followed by heat races and a Last Chance qualifying race. The finals will take place on Saturday, July 23, starting at 12:30 p.m.

In addition to the amateur drivers competing in this week’s event, there are two NASCAR Sprint Cup stars: Jamie McMurray, winner of the 2010 Daytona 500 and Brickyard 500 in the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet for Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing, and A.J. Allmendinger, driver of the famed No. 43 Best Buy Ford for Richard Petty Motorsports. The two NASCAR stars both got their start in karting and are enjoying a busman’s holiday while keeping their skills sharpened.

Tickets for the U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals are priced at $10 per day, with kids 12 and under admitted free of charge.

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