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Northern Tour Sprint Racers Wrap Season at Nicholson Speedway

Published By Bruce AKRA     October 6, 2017    
Chestertown, MD, United States - Get Directions
Race Report from AKRA Sprint Cup Northern Tour at Nicholson Speedway in Chestertown, ND


Northern Tour Sprint Racers Wrap Season at Nicholson Speedway



Story by Bruce C. Walls

Action Sports Photos by

Bruce C. Walls

Susan Taylor-Walls


            CHESTERTOWN, MD-Racers from New York to North Carolina entered the American Kart Racing Association’s American Sprint Cup Series ‘Northern Tour’ presented by R/T Leathers September 15-17 at historic Nicholson Speedway in Chestertown, MD for their fourth and final race of the season. Once again the headliner was nine-year-old Rochester, NY racer Blake Boon. This time Boon earned four feature wins, four Heat race wins and three poles on the ¼-mile asphalt road course that was built in the late 1950’s.


Boon’s swept both days first feature Kart City Performance 206 Cadet. Saturday he spun a pole winning 22.328 seconds lap that was 0.242 seconds faster than Cam Gruber’s 22.570 seconds qualifying lap.

Boon beat Gruber to the Heat race’s checkered flag by just 0.431 seconds and then had third fastest qualifier Will Loller chasing him across the feature’s finish with 0.277 seconds separating them at the stripe. Gruber finished third.


Loller was Sunday’s fastest 206 Cadet qualifier with a 22.385 seconds run. Boon’s best qualifying lap was just 0.002 seconds slower at 22.387 seconds. Gruber and Christopher Spry started behind them in row two.


When the Heat race’s green flag flew so did Boon who built a huge 7.250 seconds lead over Loller. Gruber and Spry finished further back in the top four.


In the Feature race Boon blasted away from the field. Picking up a little steam in the final laps Gruber closed the gap down to 0.808 seconds.


“The Coyote kart handled pretty good today and the GT Machine motor was awesome,” Boon described. “It was pretty fun winning two races today. I would like to thank my sponsor GT Machine. I just love racing.”


Boon also bagged both ICONIC Edge PRO Gas Cadet features, oddly, with Gruber crossing 0.151 seconds each time. Boon earned both days poles with times of 21.828 and 22.007 seconds and won both Heat races with Gruber chasing him each time by 0.415 and 0.118 seconds.


Colin Miller also captured four wins that weekend. Miller bagged both Boon & Sons 206 Junior races and added a Sunday win in MGM Chassis PRO Gas Junior. Miller also out ran Riley Kelley in Saturday’s PRO Gas Junior.


Piloting a Margay Racing Chassis 206 package kart, Long Island, NY based Andrew Cirillo won both TS 206 CIK Senior Medium classes. Saturday Cirillo was1.503 seconds ahead of Parker Maull at the stripe, Sunday was a solo effort.


“The Margay Kart worked good. I can’t say enough about them. Their tech support is fantastic, I bug them with questions all the time and they never complain,” Cirillo said. “I also want to thank my dad and my brother for coming here and helping me work on the kart.”


Jacob Connors claimed everything Razor Chassis/Roberts Kart Shop 206 Senior Heavy had to offer; poles heats and features. Saturday the 17-year-old Glen Bernie, MD based GT Machine powered MGM Xelon kart pilot dialed the pole with a 22.100 seconds lap. Anthony Colandro’s 22.293 seconds lap was 0.193 seconds slower than Connors, but fast enough for the outside pole. Behind them in row two were Jason Zobkiw and Cirillo.


Connors struggled in the Heat race’s early going before stretching out his lead over Zobkiw to 3.329 seconds at the end. Chris Cirillo crossed 4.809 seconds late for third followed by his brother Andrew in fourth and Anthony Colandro in fifth.


In the feature Connors had a short side-by-side battle with Zobkiw before running away with it. Zobkiw hung onto second with Colandro battling with him for the position. Zobkiw finished 2.640 seconds behind Connors. Colandro held onto third and was followed in the top five by the Cirillo brothers Chris and Anthony.


“The kart handled great all day,” Connors reported. “We were kind of struggling with some issues with the kart being tight, but we finally got it worked out and ran consistent lap times all day. The GT Machine motor was great it didn’t let us down all day, it was pulling hard the entire race. Other than some clutch issues that we fixed it ran good all day.”


Sunday Connors spun the pole-winning lap in 22.136 seconds. Colandro was second fastest at 22.324 seconds. Zobkiw and Andrew Cirillo were in row two. Connors captured the Heat race leading Colandro across the stripe with a 0.395 seconds advantage. Zobkiw was third, Andrew Cirillo was fourth and Kyle Weissner capped the top five.


Connors rocketed away at the Feature’s start and never looked back beating Zobkiw again this time with a comfortable 3.032 seconds cushion. Colandro crossed third and was followed in the top five by Andrew Cirillo and Weissner.


“The kart didn’t handle like I thought it was going to at the beginning, but as the race went on the tires heated up and everything settled down and I was able to get around the track perfectly and run consistent lap times,” Connors said. “The GT Machine motor was perfect just like always, just like I said yesterday it always pulls and never lets me down it’s the only motor I use at any race.”


Shannon Spry, of Annapolis, MD, swept the Senior Animal races. Sunday she and Jason Rhode put on quite a show for 13 laps of the scheduled 15 laps when suddenly Rhode’s machine developed problems and he was forced to leave the fight.


“We definitely had a battle,” Spry said crediting experience for the win.

“It was experience that made the difference. I’ve been doing this for 13-years and Jason (Rhode) has a couple of years under his belt so he can use the practice,” she joked. “The kart was good, it got a little loose at the end. The motor was pretty good. We lost our number one yesterday, but number two’s coming in. I want to thank my mom and my dad and North Laurel Auto for supporting me.”


Pittsburgh, PA based Atkins Speed Center powered PRC Chassis pilot Roger Myers won both Yamaha Senior races. Derek Greinger and John Anderson won Saturday and Sundays TaG Masters.


Kid kart racers got 8-laps of fun racing each day. Five-year-old Monroe, NC racer Talon Gaylord was Saturday’s winner and Sunday Mile Masse took the checkered flag.


“It was fun,” Gaylord beamed. “The kart handled good I want to thank my mom and my dad and mi mi and my grandpa and I want to thank my sponsor TS Racing”


Gaylord is following in both of his parents tire tracks. His father Tony Gaylord is a well-known dirt kart racer in the southeast where he’s won many races and both divisional and national championships. Talon’s mother, Marsha (Barnes) Gaylord is known for racing oval dirt and pavement and as a standout in national Sprint Cup competition.


“I got by him when he spun out,” explained 6-year-old Masse. “It was fun, I want to thank my mom and my dad,” he added. “The kart handled good and the motor was good too.”


That concludes the AKRA Sprint Cup Northern Tour for 2017. Next for both Northern and Southern Tour racers is a Grand National scheduled for October 27-29 at the 103 Street Sports Complex in Jacksonville, FL. In addition to the Grand National, a Best Transmission PRO Gas Money Shootout will be held that Saturday evening. Three PRO Gas classes will compete for cash; Senior PRO Gas. 206 Cadet and 206 Junior. For details visit or or call the AKRA office at 704-764-8138.



Nicholson Speedway photo captions


Please credit:

Action Sports Photos by:

Bruce C. Walls and

Susan Taylor-Walls


DSC_1825-#22-Blake Boon fights with # 24 Cam Gruber in PRO Gas Cadet


DSC_1874-#22-Blake Boon lead #24 Cam Gruber and #10- Will Loller


DSC_1886-206 Cadet Blake book takes the checkered flag ahead of Will Loller and #24 Cam Gruber


DSC_1947-206 Senior Heavy #05-Jacob Connors


DSC_2354- Sannon Spry wins Senior Animal


DSC_2362-206 Senior Heavy #05-Jacob Conners, #45 Tony Colandro #7-Kyle Weissner


DSC_2375-206 Senior Heavy #05-Jacob Conners, #45 Tony Colandro #7-Kyle Weissner


DSC_ 2380-#05 Jacob Connors wins 206 Senior Heavy


DSC_2757-kid karts #1 Talon Gaylord leads # 52 Miles masse


DSC_2258-kid karts #1 Talon Gaylord leads # 52 Miles masse



















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