He’s been racing hard all summer, but in the end, it took Airdrie’s Aidan Carruthers just 13 minutes to become a champion.
The 11-year-old go-kart rider won the Junior 1 racing class of the Western Canadian Karting Championships (WCKC) Aug. 26, after placing first in the series’ final race in Chilliwack, B.C. Carruthers won the final 12-lap race with a time of 13:01.031.
“It feels really great – this is what all the hard work has been for,” said the Windsong Heights student, who has been racing karts as a member of the Calgary Karting Club since he was eight years old.
The WCKC is a six-race series that allows young go-kart riders from across Western Canada to compete in two races each at tracks in Calgary, Saskatoon, Sask., and Chilliwack. The annual series took place from May to August this year.
“It’s been fun to go to all the different tracks, throughout the series,” Carruthers said.
Though it was his first time competing in the series, Carruthers dominated the Junior 1 racing class, sitting atop the leaderboard throughout his six races. He coasted to back-to-back wins May 26 and 27 at his home track near Strathmore, then finished in first and second place in his two races in Saskatoon, July 7 and 8.
In Chilliwack, Carruthers said, he struggled a bit in the qualifying round. With only one day to get used to the new track, he said, he finished third in the pre-final heats.
But he picked it up when it counted, taking home the gold in both races.
According to Carruthers, one unexpected element he had to contend with was the weather.
“The smoke wasn’t too bad, but there was a lot of rain both days,” he said, adding he hadn’t raced in the rain since last year.
“You kind of have to judge how fast you go around the corners. If you take it too tight, you’ll spin out, but if you take it too slow, people will pass you.”
Carruthers said he received a large trophy for winning the WCKC, as well as a smaller one for winning the Chilliwack portion of the series.
He said he had fun on the trip to Chilliwack, and particularly enjoyed the scenery while driving across British Columbia with his father.