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The NASKART Pro Racing Series powered by ROYAL PURPLE, got their season started this past weekend (3-5-11) at Thunderhill Raceway. With a front moving through on Saturday morning leaving rain, cooler temperatures and winds gusting up to 35 mph, it was gonna make it a tough day for a good setup. But as the day wore on the skies cleared and the winds calmed down. 10 karts showed up for the opening round and the day started with qualifying. First up was the Smitty Built Racing #20, with the 2007 NASKART Champion Driskill Stallworth returning to the series. But the racing gods were not with him on his return as during qualifying his motor let loose and ended his day early. Out next on the track with Stallworth was the 2010 NASKART Champion Mike Steinman in his #1 Austin Architectural Graphics Kart. Steinman set the time to beat with a qualifying time of 18.492. Next up was #5 Matt McDade, a rookie to the series this year, qualifying 3rd with a time of 18.722. Out on the track with McDade was TEAM Rockhard Racing's #24 Chris Terry catching a dfart off of the #5 to take the POLE Position with a new NASKART Track record at Thunderhill with a 18.042. TEAM Rockhard's Marty Kreis qualified 4th with a time of 18.763 just missing putting 2 of the 3 TEAM Rockhard Racing's karts in the top 3. rounding out the qualifying were Robert Carr in the #27 qualifying 5th and Andy Taylor in his #14 Pearland Car Care kart qualifying 6th. Non-qualifyers were the #42 TARGET kart of NASKART Rookie Chris Birmingham, the TEAM Rockhard Racing's #88 Kaleb Kreis. Butch Lake Driving the #07 of his Grand Niece, Megan Smith, went out for qualifying but had a TI for not having a transponder. So to the back he went. But at least his kart won something this night as the #07 of Megan Smith was voted best looking kart by the fans!



For the main, the NASKART Pro Series inverted the qualifying order putting the #14 of Andy Taylor on pole and Robert Carr #27 outside pole. 2nd row was the #29 of Marty Kreis and #5 Matt McDade. 3rd row had the #1 of Steinman and the #24 of Chris Terry. 4th Row had the #88 of kaleb Kreis and the #42 of Chris Birmingham. and at the back was the #07 of Butch Lake.

When the green flag dropped everyone was side by side then the inside line started moving forwards. Taylor #14 in the lead got loose and moved up the track allowing Team Rockhard Racing's #29 Marty Kreis and #1 Steinman to move inside of him coming off of turn 2. Going down the back straight Steinman dropped down inside of #29 Kreis to put his #1 in front and lead the first lap of the season. But Marty was not having any of that as going down the back straight he repassed Steinman to take the lead into 3 and lead the next lap. For the next 4 laps Steinman and Kreis battled for the lead with the 2 of them repassing each other for the lead back and forth. Until lap 9 when Team Rockhard Racing's #24 Chris Terry got by Steinman to take over 2nd behind his Teammmate. These 3 were nose to tail til lap 12 when the Competition yellow came out regrouping the field for a Double-File restart. This put Teamm Rockhard Racing's #29 Kreis on the pole and beside hi was the #24 of Terry. Steinman inside on row 2 and rookie #5 Matt Mcdade on the outside of 2. Inside on row 3 was the #27 of Robert Carr who was drafting and racing with the #5 of Mcdade and outside on row 3 was the #07 of Butch Lake. row 4 was Taylor #14 on the inside and outside was the #42 of Chris Birmingham. Both of these drivers were having a tough time dialing in the carburater during the race. Eventually putting the #42 into the pits.


On the Restart, Kresi and Steinman and Terry picked up were they left off and were once again battling for the lead. On lap 16 Steinman #1 put his kart back into the lead. But Kreis #29 on the very next lap made his way past Steinman back into the lead. On lap 19, Steinman made his move again to take the lead...but this put the Rockhard Racing Teammates. Steinman knowing that the 3 of them were together protected the low line..but the Team Rockhard racing Duo went around the outside of Steinman to take the lead again. Working together they were holding off Steinman who was looking for any opening he could find to get by. With these 3 battling for the lead....this allowed #5 Mcdade and # 27 Carr to move up to join the battle...giving Steinman someone to draft with...but Mcdade got loose off of turn 2 and the 3 leaders pulled away again leaving Mcdade and Carr to battle for 4th place. As the laps wound down...Steinman couldn't get around the #24 of Chris Terry who was glued to the bumper of his teammate and Team owner #29 Marty Kreis. Terry being the team player today took his Owner to his Very First NASKART Pro Racing Series win EVER!!! After 5 long years racing in the series, Marty was able to taste VICTORY!!! Congratulations to Team Rockhard Racing finishing 1st and 2nd with Mike Steinman #1 in 3rd. Mcdade #5 finished 4th and starts the season as the top rookie. Last years Rookie of the Year, Robert Carr #27, finished 5th with Andy Taylor #14 coming home in a lonely 6th place.

Butch lake #07 was seventh, Chris Birmingham #42 8th and #88 Kaleb Kreis 9th after having motor issues only 2 laps into the race.


Next race will be back at Thunderhill Raceway on March 19th when the NASKART Pro Racing Series powered by ROYAL PURPLE continues its season.

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