It's reasonable for those relatively new to auto racing to ask, "Where does racing go-karts fit in this world?"

The answer is this: it virtually defines the success of any given driver in professional motorsport.

Karting is so important to racing that one could randomly point to any driver in F1, NASCAR, IndyCar, major league sports car racing - you name it - and for certain that driver began racing karts somewhere between the ages of 6 and 12.

Think about that.

In big-picture terms, karting is no different than Little League baseball. How many Major Leaguers did not play baseball at a young age?

Karting teaches all the fundamentals - esoteric as they may be to those not intimately knowledgeable of the sport - that must become second nature as a driver rises through the ranks: racecraft, emotional control, chassis set-up, car control skills, racing "wheel-to-wheel," team dynamics, safe driving (no, that's not an oxymoron), instantly and always changing situational awareness, money management (that means you, Mom and Dad!), communication skills… all those things you need to succeed are seeded, nurtured, practiced and learned in karting.

With very few exceptions, aspiring pro drivers who don't have a karting background begin their careers (Caution! Arcane racing metaphor ahead!) with 50lbs of extra ballast and a slowly deflating right-rear…

And that's how karting fits into the world of professional racing.

August 4, 2015

Michael d’Orlando continues to impress and improve at the Junior level as he finished last weekend’s two race event with a fourth and fifth place finish at Michiana Raceway Park (MRP) in South Bend, IN for round three of the USPKS series.

Michael’s weekend kicked off with a strong qualifying effort on Saturday as he drove his No.51 KoeneUSA Tony/Kart to a P3 qualifying position, where he would start both of the Heat races. After a struggle finishing ninth in Heat race one, the luck of nearby Notre Dame showed no evidence of existence in Heat race two, as contact early on in the race sent Michael to the back far behind the rest of the field. It was decided to end his race early to preserve tires for the final. Starting from the 12th position Michael would fight like the Irishman and make his way through the field passing seven karts and bring his No.251 KoeneUSA Tony/Kart to an impressive fifth place finish.

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August 4, 2015

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It was another solid weekend for Nicholas d’Orlando, with third and fourth place finishes at Michiana Raceway Park (MRP) in South Bend, IN for round three of the USPKS series. Nicholas was one of the fastest karts all weekend in MiniRok 60 Cadet but the luck of the Irish from nearby Notre Dame was in limited supply.

Nicholas started the weekend off with a solid qualifying effort on Saturday as he drove his No.15 KoeneUSA Tony/Kart to a P3 qualifying position, where he would start each of the two heat races. Heat race 1 went smoothly has he finished a very close 2nd while earning fastest lap honors. Heat race 2 showed a little more challenging with a slip down a bit to sixth place. Starting from P2 in the final, Nicholas would remain in the top-three all race long. He would cross the finish line in second but was given a driving infraction penalty on the last lap and was officially scored third.

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