Cooper Stapleton has been a front runner in the Cadet 9 Class for a few seasons now having podium finishes in the Australian Kart Championship and State ranks. 2021 is a new season and a new challenge for Cooper, having his first full season in the Cadet 12 class in his Brighton Alpine backed entry. Running over the weekend at the opening round of the Golden Power Series at the Rochester Kart Club, the A1 Engine powered driver was looking for a strong result in 40 kart oversized field!
Qualifying was the first task ahead of Cooper and this started well by making the top 50% in timed practice. Stapleton in his R & D Signage Solutions entry immediately put himself in the top 10 just outside the top 5. In a strongly contested qualifying session with some of the state’s best, Stapleton qualified in a very respectable position 7 setting himself up for a strong spot in the split heat races.
Heat 1 and Stapleton was looking to make up spots off the start and that was indeed what he did. The A1 Engines driver was immediately able to jump to position 2 to try and chase down Pip Casabene. Stapleton in a fighting drive crossed the line in second spot but due to a time infringement to Casabene, Stapleton was classified the heat winner and took maximum points!
Heat 2 and Stapleton again got a strong start and jumped from position four to three and had race leaders Joanne Ciconte and Alexander Yoannidis to deal with. The Brighton Alpine backed entry chased hard and managed to come home in another strong top 3 position. Finishing 3rd put him in a great spot on points heading to the final.
Heat 3 and Stapleton didn’t get the start he was after dropping back to 5th spot and had some work to do chasing the top 4. Stapleton had a race long battle with George Macmillan and Jett Avard for the final spot in the top 3. Stapleton on the final lap was able to make his way past Jett Avard coming home with 4th spot and on points putting him off the front row for the full Cadet 12 field.
In what looked to be one to watch in the final Stapleton’s final was pretty much over before it began, being taken out of action on the opening lap of the race. Coopers father Troy was able to find many positives from a strong weekend. “Cooper was excited to face the challenge of racing at a track he had never seen before. p2 in heat two and p3 in heat three was a strong start to Sunday. He had a lot of fun and really enjoyed racing at the Rochester track”. Stapleton will be running the Australian Kart Championship and Victorian Titles in the next few months and is a driver that many will fear to face!