Team Sahlen, presented by honeybeeBase.com, entered the 6 hour Endurance Karting event at Pittsburgh International Race Complex Kart Track with hopes of having lots of fun as well as giving young Ian Nonnamaker the opportunity to make his racing debut. Both goals were successful. Team Sahlen would recommend the Endurance Karting series to anyone wanting to go out and have an amazing time for a very economical investment.
Team Sahlen on Friday at Pitt Race to get some practice laps. These track’s house karts were available to rent, and Will & Ian Nonnamaker used the opportunity to take 2 stints in these super easy to drive karts. Mission accomplished, both drivers were able to remember which direction the track went, and quickly got up to speed. Afterward, the Team Sahlen crew went to work to set up their Pit/Paddock next to the track to be ready for the next day’s adventure.
Saturday dawned with the brightest of blue skies and warm, but not too hot temperatures,,,just perfect for a 6 hour enduro Kart race. The morning was filled with practice sessions, where all three drivers, Wayne, Will & Ian Nonnamaker, took turns learning the Endurance Karting karts. Last was a 5 minute “shoot out” qualifying session, were Ian Nonnamaker had the honors of turning the laps to set the place on the grid.
The 6 hour enduro started at 11:30 am with a “LeMans” style start. Will Nonnamaker sprinted across the track, and soon picked up several spots before even turn one. Team Sahlen choose the unique strategy to pit very soon into the race to click off one of the 15 required pit stops. The 1st several hours rolled along with all three drivers putting in very solid laps. Team Sahlen had set up radios for each driver which greatly assisted Pit Strategist Joe Nonnamaker in announcing lap times, position in track and pit stops.
A mandatory full course caution at the halfway mark saw Team Sahlen in the top half of the field. Wayne Nonnamaker was behind the wheel at the restart, and did an excellent job of working through traffic avoiding several incidents.
The 2nd half of the race just flew by, and before Team Sahlen knew it, the race was nearly over. It was decided to have young Ian Nonnamaker do a double stint behind the wheel to bring the #27 Kart to the finish line. Ian’s last stint was far from boring, as fast on his heals was the 8th place racer charging hard. Despite being a fresh, raw rookie behind the wheel, Ian did not let the pressure get to him. Turning consistent laps through traffic, Ian matched times with his 8th place competitor and secured 7th place at the Checkered Flag.
Ian shared his thoughts after the race – “What an amazing time this event was. I have been to Pitt Race Kart before, but never competed in a race, especially one of the magnitude of a 6 hour event. I really had fun, especially driving with my Dad and Uncle Wayne.”
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