Bailey Makes Fikse Wheels Pro Tour Debut
On May 1st-3rd, 2015, Kol Bailey made his first ever starts in the Superkarts! USA Fikse Wheels Pro Tour at PKRA in Phoenix, Arizona. The 18 year-old Arizonan contested the S2 (Semi-Pro Stock Moto) class under the Pure Karting tent.
Things kicked off on Saturday for the first qualifying session of the weekend. Qualifying was a let down for Bailey because the motor seized before he finished his first flying lap. This made Bailey start in the 30th and final position for the first heat. The mechanics frantically rebuilt his Honda CR125 and it was ready to do battle in Heat 1.
In Heat 1, Bailey was determined to show his pace finishing 13th from 30th on the grid. In Heat 2, he advanced from 13th to 10th on the grid. This would start him in 10th for the final. The final was a nerve racking race with Bailey getting a good start and racking up positions to come from 10th to 4th on the grid, and posting fastest lap.
“My heart just sank when we crossed the line. I wanted a podium so badly, but I just came up short. If I were to have a few more laps, I think I could’ve broken into the top three. On the plus side, we know we have the speed and I think we can top three tomorrow if we play our cards right.”
On Sunday in warm-up, Kol was the fastest S2 driver on track, marginally edging-out Carter Williams (FA, Phil Giebler). In qualifying, Bailey put it in 3rd position behind Luke Shanahan (Tony Kart, MSquared) and Carter Williams (FA, Phil Giebler).
In Heat 1, Bailey went back to 6th, and finally settled for 5th.
“The kart was terrible for the first 3-4 laps. I don’t understand why. This lost me a great deal of time, but I picked up the speed when the tires came in. We are going to make some adjustments for the second Heat and see where it goes.”
Heat 2 was going to be the worst race of the weekend for Bailey because it ended his chances for a good finish after being taken out of the race.
“I got such a bad start, I think that’s where the misfortune began.” He recalls, ” Going into the second corner I got a little anxious and ran over Brandon Frank (Praga, Leading Edge). It is totally my fault. I was a bit impatient and didn’t use my head. I am very sorry for him, but I guess I will learn a lot from this and not repeat these mistakes again.”
This placed Kol dead last for the final. Starting 30th, he only lasted a few laps before retiring.
“I feel bad for retiring. I let down everyone that came out to watch, the team, and myself. This weekend has been very important though. We did have some mishaps, but the good thing about them is that I will learn from them, and avoid making these mistakes in the future. I also made a lot of friends and had a lot of fun at my first ever Pro Tour. I just want to thank God for this blessing of racing, doing what I love to do, especially at this level. I can never thank him enough. A huge thank you to everyone for coming out and supporting me. Thank you to Spy Optic, Imune Clothing, and Dark Horse Pros for the continued support. Thank you to Cliff at Pure Karting, Alessio and Alessandro Piccini, and Tyler Bennett for the awesome set up on the chassis. Congratulations to Carter on his stellar drive, he’s the best right now. Racing with him is fun. We also found that we have the speed and the pace to challenge the leaders, so I am eagerly awaiting for round two in New Castle, Indiana. In the meantime, we have Sonoma coming up in June. Hopefully we can get that elusive first win here soon. I’m closer than ever before and I want one badly!”
The next round is in New Castle, Indiana July 24-26.