Kearny – Gila Monster Go-Kart Speedway located at the Gila County Fairgrounds in Globe makes it happen for kids. In a little valley, just below the fairgrounds, lies a miniature oval dirt track which comes alive every other Friday evening, with kids from age 6 -18 traveling from Show Low, Globe, Miami and Kearny.
If you haven’t seen Go-Kart racing, you are missing out on a great time. The season begins in April and ends in September, with three classes; beginners, ages 6 -11 and ages 12-18. Spectators are free and pit passes are $5 per person. The entry fee for drivers is $15. The 2013 season ended Sat., Sep. 21, with Kearny racers finishing on top.
Veteran Leah Wallace, racing #6, finished her third racing season, giving it her all for this year, racing to the top and taking first place for the 2013 Championship in the 12-18 class. Leah finished her first two years with two third place finishes.
Austin Colling, racing # 13, took second place in the 12-18 class. Austin had a fantastic seasonal finish on Fri., Sept. 20, and Sat., Sept. 21, with two hat tricks.
In the language of the go-kart racing world, a hat trick is a racer who finishes first in their Trophy Dash, Heat Race and Main Event for that evening of racing. No easy task, because, anything can, and often does, happen.
Brother and sister racers, Eric Jr. and Brooke Kelley finished in first place for the season. Eric Kelly Jr. finished with a second championship in his little Silver Bullet #K1 in the 6-11 division, while Brooke finished her first year with a championship in the Beginners division, driving her yellow Bumble Bee #K2.
Another brother and sister racing family duo is Doug and Taylor Ashby. Taylor completes in her orange and black Zesty #15 go-kart and finished her third year of racing in the 12-18 class, while Doug raced #18, M & M, in the 6-11 age division, finishing his second year of racing. Taylor finished seventh place and Doug finished second place for the 2013 Racing Season.
Gabriel Schwartz finished twelfth place in the 12-18 division for the season, following his second year of racing. Hats off to Gabe’s mom, who is his chief mechanic, sponsor and transporter.
Beginners had a new racer on Saturday: Meiyah Stacy. When Meiyah was asked how she felt before the race, her answer was “Excited and scared.” Ms. Stacy finished fifth in her race. Will she be back next year? Time will tell!
Saturday’s events closed out the 2013 racing season, with fun for all, including the awaited Best of the Best Race with top racers of each division racing against each other, In a great show of sportsmanship, Leah Wallace and Austin Collings raced bumper to bumper, metal to metal. With both using their trickiest racing maneuvers, Austin stood his ground and held off Leah for a thrilling first place finish.
Next was the Powder Puff race with first time racer Ashley Bryce racing against veteran Taylor Harmon, along with other racers. Ashley Bryce was asked how she felt before the race. “Excited and terrified.” she said. Taylor Harmon took first place, proving she’s still got what it takes.
Last, but not least, was the Mechanics Race. It was a sight to see the grownups getting into the little go-karts! Eric Kelley, Sr. fulfilled a childhood dream of racing go-karts beside the other snug-fitted adults. The green flag was waved and the race was on. A side-by-side fierce competition between Eric Kelley, Sr. and Aaron Hetrick, both veteran Modified racers in the adult racing world. Fans were on their feet, hooting and hollering.as Eric squeezed past the checkered flag for the win.
All in all, racers and fans had a great time. Now, can someone get a crowbar and some grease, and release the adults?