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Race Report for Gransport Speedway

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The NASKART Series went on another road trip for its 4th race of the season. this time to Gandsport Speedway down in Hitchcock, Texas located south of Houston. Grandsport Speedway is a fast 1.3 mile road course with 12 turns of variating degress on it.


First practice saw everyone trying different gears and setups to figure out the track since this was the first time we had even seen the track. but with the 3 practice seassions we had everyone was getting dialed in. But it wasn't without drama as several people had some sort of motor or mechanical problems to sort out. Frank Mena in the #12 was done after the 3rd practice as the head on his motor had valve issues, not allowing him to race the rest of the day. Megan Smith in the #07 had some motor issues which held her out of the heat race. But with help from Mike Steinman and Frank Mena was able to make the main later in the day.


When it was time for the heat race, we gridded up inverting the points so that the points leader, Mike Steinman in the Austin Architecural graphics - 3M #16, was at the back of the field. With the M&M's #18 on the pole driven by Kelli Garrett. Outside pole was Team ROCKHARD Racing's #88 Kaleb Kreis followed by his teammate Chris Terry in the #24 and Andy Taylor in the #14.

Behind them were ROCKHARD Racings Marty Kreis in the #29 and Mike Steiman.


Starting in a rolling start on a road course...as soon as the flag flew the dicing began with Kaleb Kreis jumping out to the lead heading into turns 1 and 2....followed by Kelli Garrett and Andy Taylor. But dicing his way thru traffic was Mike Steinman from the back and by turn 3 he had taken over 2nd and was chasing down Kaleb. Going down the back striaght Kaleb pulled out a couple of karts lead over Steinman, but going ito the tight decreasing turns of 7 and 8, Steinman late braked past Kreis and took the lead. By the time they reached the start finish line at the end of lap 1, it was Steinman, Kaleb Kreis Kelli Garrett and Andy Taylor.

The next 2 laps saw Steinman jump to a large lead over the field as the others were dicing for position. About halfway thru the 13 lap heat race....Steinman was slowing down with jetting problems which allowed Kaleb Kreis to catch up from a spin earlier going thru turns 1 and 2. And right on his heals was Andy Taylor. Lap 8 saw Kaleb Kreis take the lead again passing Steinman down the back straight. But Steinman got on the gas again and was able to pass Kaleb thru turns 10 thru 12 taking the lead back going onto the front straight. But Kaleb caught Steinman for the lead at the Start/Finish Line. Going into thurns 1 and 2...Kaleb broke early and again Steinman late break going thru the corners and took the lead again. Kaleb going thru the turns felt like he was losing his brake so he made the smart decision to nurse his kart to get the brakes back. But this allowed Andy Taylor, who was having a great race fighting for position with Kelli Garrett until she ran out of gas, to zoom past and start running down Steinman. Lap 10 saw Andy go past steinman going down into the decreasing turns of 7 & 8, but breaking early allowed Steinman to stay on his bumper and then set him up for the pass on turn 10. Taylor wasn't expecting Steinman to be there and ended up Spinning out on the exit of 10 handing Steinman the lead again and allowing Kaleb Kreis to pass for 2nd. At this point Steinman put some distance on Kreis & Taylor and went on to win the heat race. But the drama wasn't over as Taylor on the last3 turns of the race, over took Kreis for 2nd and held on to 2nd to the line. Kaleb finishing 3rd. Motor gremlins had caught up with Marty Kreis #29 and he was watching the race from the infield. Kelly Garrett ran out of fuel and was stuck on the infield as well. The #24 of Chris Terry was using a back up motor for the race...but just didn't seem to have the same punch as his primary motor.


For the Main we lined up without #18 Kelli Garrett (bent push rods) & #12 Frank Mena (bent valve) but the rest of the field was ready to race. Once again we inverted the field from the finish of the heat race putting ROCKHARD Racing in the first 3 positions. Marty Kreis #29 on the pole, Chris Terry #24 outside pole, and Kaleb Kreis inside the 2nd row. Andy Taylor #14 was on the outside of row 2, with Mike Steinman # 16 and Megan Smith #07 at the back. When the green flag dropped the scrambling for position into turns 1 and 2 began. Megan behind Taylor went to the inside of Chris Terry on the start followed by Steinman, with Steinman going deep into the turn and getting underneath Megan and Taylor to take the lead coming out of turn 3. But going down the back straight, Megan was able to motor past Steinman into the Lead but coming up on the decreasing radius turns of 7 and 8 where Steinman was fast all day. Steinman late braked again to go around Megan and then lead the field back to the line. But Megan was determined to hang with Steinman. Megan then followed Steinman thru turns 1 thru 3 and then again motored down the back straight past him. Only to be outbreaked again going into the 7 and 8 turns. This went on for several laps with the 2 of them fighting for the lead. Until lap 10 of 20 when Megan was able to hold off Steinman going into 7 and 8 and then thru 9 & 10 Steinman would get to her back bumper...but never again was able to get past Megan. She put her head down with Steinman in tow and the 2 of them put in the fastest laps of the day droping into the mid 1:11's on their lap times. They ran this way til about 4 to go, when Megan slowly pulled away and WON her first NASKART Series race EVER!!! Steinman finished 2nd with Andy Taylor finishing 3rd almost 3/4 of lap back of the leaders. Chris Terry finished 4th with Kaleb and Marty Kreis pulling into the pits with ailing karts to finish 5th and 6th.


With this win, Megan moved up from 7th to 4th in the points and looks to be a strong contender for more wins this season. Andy Taylor in his first road course race EVER, did very well and just needs to get some seat time on the road courses. But with his fresh motor looks to be someone to watch out for at the ovals. Mike Steinman was able to increase his points lead over 2nd place Marty Kreis, but Marty was smart this weekend just racing to get the most points he could. Chris Terry moved from 4th to 3rd and looks to be overtaking his teammate soon for 2nd in pursuit of the championship.


So now, The NASKART Series rolls into Thunderhill Raceway on May 8th with a full field of karts to race in front of family and friends and all the fans of Thunderhill. We all look forward to coming home where it all started for the NASKART Series!!!

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