The pole positions went to Celenta (KZ2), Baglin (MINI Gr.3), Di Pietrantonio (MINI Gr.3 U10), Yildirim (OK-N) and David Cosma Cristofor (OK-N Junior). Further heats to follow on Saturday, as the Finals of the fourth and closing round will be on Sunday, June 25th.
The intense heat has arrived in Sarno to kick off the fourth and final round of the WSK Open Series, featuring the MINI, KZ2, OK-N and OK-N Junior categories. This event at the Circuito Internazionale Napoli will determine the champions of the 2023 Open Series. The qualifying sessions and initial heats officially started the Sarno weekend on Friday, which is characterized by extremely high temperatures, with the air exceeding 34°C and the track reaching 70°C. These conditions undoubtedly make the competitive challenge more difficult.
KZ2 – The fastest of practice is the home hero Celenta.
An exciting challenge immediately unfolded in the crowded KZ2 category, with over 80 of the most competitive drivers in international karting present at this event. In the three qualifying heats, the overall fastest turned out to be Francesco Celenta (#98 Parolin Motorsport/Parolin-TM Kart-LeCont), the "home master" in Sarno, who secured the pole position in Session 2 with a time of 53.310s. However, a great time was also posted by the young Japanese driver Kean Nakamura-Berta (#96 Prema Racing/KR-Iame), who had the best performance in Session 3 with a time of 53.374s, while the other Italian driver Paolo Ippolito (#21 KR Motorsport/KR-Iame) was the fastest in Session 1 with a time of 53.514s.
Among the top contenders were also Nakamura's teammate, the Jamaican driver Alex Powell, who achieved the second-best time in Session 2 with 53.455s, as well as the French driver Jeremy Iglesias (#81 CRG Racing Team/CRG-TM Kart) with the second-best time in Session 3 in 53.392s and the fellow Frenchman Adrien Renaudin (#94 DR/DR-Modena Engines) with the second-best time in Session 1 in 53.594s. Other standout performers of the weekend, showcasing their skills and achieving the third-best time in their respective heats, included the Italian driver Cristian Bertuca (#51 BirelART Racing/BirelART-TM Kart) with a time of 53.469s in Session 2, the Dutch driver Senna Van Walstijn (#1 Sodikart/Sodi-TM Kart) with a time of 53.496s set in Session 3, and his teammate from France Emilien Denner, with a time of 53.625s in Session 1. The championship leader, the Dutch driver Stan Pex (#13 SP Motorsport/KR-TM Kart), secured the fifth-best time in Session 1 (53.547s).
MINI Gr.3 – Baglin takes the pole position by 0.013s.
The pole position of MINI Gr.3 was claimed by a whisker by the English driver Noah Baglin (#521 iKart/KR-Iame-Vega) with a time of 1:02.486s, which was just 0.013s ahead of the time posted by the American driver Devin Walz (#514 BabyRace/Parolin-Iame) and 0.088s of that of the Australian driver William Calleja, Walz's teammate. The other top positions were secured by the championship leader, the Romanian driver Bogdan Cosma Cristofor (#539 Team Driver/KR-Iame), who achieved the fourth-best time, trailing by 0.159s and by Vladimir Ivannikov (#522 Gamoto/EKS-TM Kart) with the fifth-best time, trailing by 0.178s. Following closely behind were the Monégasque Andrea Manni (#625 BabyRace/Parolin-Iame) at 0.203s, the Spanish drivers Bosco Arias Chavarri (#503 Team Driver/KR-Iame) at 0.211s and Nicola Stanley (#523 Gamoto/EKS-TM Kart) at 0.219s, the Peruvian Mariano Lopez (#509 BabyRace/Parolin-Iame) at 0.260s and Panama’s Gianmatteo Rousseau (#504 Team Driver/KR-Iame) at 0.267s.
MINI Gr.3 Under 10 – A super time by Di Pietrantonio.
Among the very young drivers of MINI Under 10, the Italian Lorenzo Di Pietrantonio (#559 Virus Racing/BirelART-Iame-Vega) set an impressive time to secure the pole position with a lap of 1:03.012s, holding a good advantage over his pursuers led by the Australian Sebastian Eskandari-Marandi (#524 Tony Kart R.T./Tony Kart-Vortex) who ended 0.213s behind and the Belgian driver Antoine Venant (#572 Kidix/KR-Iame) at 0.241s. The other Italian drivers in pursuit include Edoardo Colucci (#563 Team Driver/KR-Iame) at 0.293s, David Moscardi (#614 AMC Teach/BirelART-Iame) at 0.397s, Enea Pezzutto (#507 KR Motorsport/KR-Iame) at 0.527s, Achille Rea (#544 Tony Kart R.T./Tony Kart-Vortex) at 0.530s the Swedish driver Maximus Unt (#569 Ward Racing/Tony Kart-TM Kart) at 0.569s, the Italian Niccolò Perico (#566 Energy Corse/Energy-TM Kart) at 0.584s and Danill Kutskov (#649 BabyRace/Parolin-Iame) at 0.590s. The championship leader from Poland, Leonardo Gorski (#511 BabyRace/Parolin-Iame), had a setback with the 21st fastest time, trailing by 1.470s.
Best times for Yildirim (OK-N) and David Cosma Cristofor (OK-NJ).
In the combined category of OK-N and OK-N Junior, the Turkish driver Bati Ege Yildirim (#202 Modena Kart/Parolin-TM Kart-Vega) set the fastest overall time in OK-N with a lap completed after 56.423s, which was just over two tenths ahead of the OK-N Junior participants led by the Romanian driver David Cosma Cristofor (#307 Kidix/KR-Iame) at 0.224s behind. The Polish driver Bruno Gryc (#309 MLG/Parolin-TM Kart) also stood out with the third fastest overall time and the second fastest in the Junior class at 0.307s from the top. Several others were within a second: the Spanish driver Nikita Nikishov (#305 Gamoto/Tony Kart-TM Kart) at 0.319s, the Italian drivers Giacomo Giusto (#303 Modena Kart/Parolin-TM Kart) at 0.330s, Gino Rocchio (#308 DR/DR-Modena Engines) at 0.698s and Giuseppe Piccolo (#310 Team Driver/KR-Iame) at 1.007s.
The winners of the first qualifying heats held on Friday:
KZ2: Celenta (A.B), Denner (C-D), Iglesias (E-F), Ippolito (A-C), Powell (D-F), Nakamura (B-E).
MINI Gr.3: Baglin (heat-1).
MINI Gr.3 Under 10: Perico (heat-1).
OK-N, OK-N Junior (heat-1): Yildirim (OK-N) and David Cosma Cristofor (OK-NJ).
The program of the WSK Open Series, Round 4, Sarno:
Saturday, June 24: warm-up at 8:30; qualifying heats from 11:00.
Sunday, June 25: warm-up at 8:30; live TV and Live Streaming coverage from 10:40 (Prefinals) and Finals from 13:30 (13:30 MINI U10, 14:00 MINI GR.3, 14:30 KZ2, 15:00 OK-N and OK-N Junior).