July 10, 2012 - Shifting their focus to the 2012 United States Rotax Grand Nationals, d'Orlando Racing Corp. (DRC Inc.) pilots Michael and Nicholas d'Orlando competed two weekends ago in northern Indiana. Seeing action at the Jet Karting facility at Michiana Raceway Park , Michael would claim a pair of top six results after spirited drives through the field while younger brother Nicholas, would claim his first Rotax international podium with a solid second place finish.
Heading into qualifying on Saturday morning, both Michael and Nicholas were confident about their chances of starting at the front of their respective fields. Michael would manage to turn the fourth quickest circuit in the Rotax Mini Max division while younger brother Nicholas, who would compete in Rotax Micro Max, managed the fifth quickest lap and would line up Saturday's wheel-to-wheel action inside row three.
Michael would improve greatly in the prefinal as he moved forward from the drop of the green flag. Turning lap times competitive to the leader and scoring the second fastest lap of his heat race, Michael would cross the stripe in P2 and start the main event from outside the front row.
Looking to challenge for the race win, disaster would strike for Michael on lap two of the main event as he was pushed wide and off the racing surface and was sent spiraling down the running order. Falling back to the tail of the field, the eldest d'Orlando driver showed his race craft all while controlling his aggression as he meticulously worked his way forward. Driving through the field of drivers and into the fifth position, Michael ran out of time before he could advance forward any further but did manage to score the fastest lap of the race while claiming the fifth position.
Nicholas would also show prefinal improvement in the Micro Max class as he would advance forward to finish second. Just like his older brother, Nicholas would start on the outside of the front row for the main event, but would manage to have better fortune during the opening laps and maintain his position. Battling hard with a field of stout Micro Max competitors, Nicholas would cross the stripe in the fourth position.
Back to the track for the second of two race days, Michael would look to improve on Saturday's fifth place finish. Starting the day off on the right foot, the New York resident would qualify his Kosmic Kart in the fourth position before failing to finish the prefinal. Starting shotgun on the field for the main event, Michael again drove like a seasoned veteran as he sliced and diced his way forward to finish just outside the top five in sixth.
Sunday would be a day of consistent improvement for Nicholas as he progressed forward with each and every on track session. After qualifying in the fifth position, Nicholas would garner a fourth place result in the prefinal and start outside row two for the main event. Looking to continue his way forward, Nicholas again moved forward and would be in a heated battle for the entire main event. Running in the second position and with a quartet of karts in succession behind him, Nicholas managed to hold off the advances of his closest competitors on multiple occasions to score his first podium result in this level of Rotax competition all while claiming the fastest lap of the main event.
"Both Michael and Nicholas learned a lot this weekend," expressed Sherri d'Orlando or DRC Inc. "Both drivers gained front row starting experience and had the chance to battle with some of the United States top drivers. We are looking forward to coming back to the facility in early August for the Rotax Grand Nationals."
DRC Inc. would like to thank the race team at J3 Competition including Justin Stefani and David Dodson, and tuner Adam Johnson, for all of their continued hard work. Additional thanks to Legree Motorsports and PSerra Racing for their help and support.
For more information on Michael or Nicholas d'Orlando, along with partnership opportunities, please visit www.dorlandoracing.com. Be sure to follow Michael and Nicholas on Facebook (Michael d'Orlando Racing or Nicholas d'Orlando Racing) and Twitter (@dorlandoracing) to stay up to date on news, information, photos and results.