03.05.2012 - Jacksonville opens Gold Cup Series in fine fashion

CONCORD, N.C. – The 2012 World Karting Association RLV Tuned Exhaust Products Gold Cup Series opened this past weekend with terrific racing and competition at Jacksonville, Fla.’s 103rd Street Sports Complex.

Approximately 280 entries made the Barnes Paving Nationals the best-attended Gold Cup event since summer 2008 at Circleville, Ohio.

Racing was fierce with last-lap passes and race-long battles for national wins in a number of the 34 main events.

Maryland’s Jacob Heavlow was the weekend’s big winner with a sweep of the Jr Lite, Medium and Heavy. Heavlow dominated each of the three mains and was never seriously threatened throughout the weekend.

Young Maryland racer Zack Wells joined Heavlow as a triple winner with scores in both Jr Sportsman 1 Box Stock mains and Sportsman 1 Lite.

Several drivers wheeled their mounts to a pair of national triumphs.

Jacob Duvall swept the new X-30 Senior mains. Duvall won convincingly both days.

Luke Kohlbecker won both Komet Sportsman features to join Duvall as a double 2-cycle Gold Cup victor at Jax.

Trent Barnes won both Sportsman 2 Animal features in the event that featured his family’s Barnes Paving business as the title sponsor.

Aren Smith captured both Jr Box Stock Final 1 and 2. Aren won both features over his brother, Tyler.

The largest classes were Sr Box Stock and Stock (Animal) Medium and Heavy, which each started approximately 20 racers.

These classes also provided fans with some of the most exciting racing. Tyler Sandmeyer was one of the drivers to beat all weekend. Sandmeyer won over Gary Lawson in Saturday’s Stock Heavy. Lawson found redemption Sunday with a last-turn pass on Sandmeyer for the Stock Medium triumph.

Sandmeyer led every lap except the last one in Saturday’s Sr Box Stock Final 1, which saw Tyler Bell scoot by on the second-to-last corner to take the big win.

Eric Fagan scored Sunday’s Sr Box Stock Final 2 main after making a last-lap pass on Rob Hindrey, who like Sandmeyer on Saturday led every lap except the last. Connor Lund also made it by Hindrey to take second. Hindrey settled for third with defending Box Stock national champion Joey Miller a close fourth.

Other winners were Robbie Jones in Stock Lite; Chris Carroll in Masters Medium; Jim Lipari in Animal Modified Medium; Derek Sobel in X-30 Junior Final 1; Emerson Reed in X-30 Junior Final 2; Dalton Smith in LO206 Kid Kart Final 1; Cale Hall in LO206 Kid Kart Final 2; Connor Tebbe in Jr Sportsman 2 Box Stock Final 1; Evan Cowen in Jr Sportsman 2 Box Stock Final 2; Gabriel Zellner in Sportsman 1 Heavy; David Barry in Masters Heavy; Dustin Demattia in Restricted Junior; Ryan Bennett in Animal Amateur Medium.

A full Barnes Paving Nationals will come later this week.