Barnes enjoys magical weekend in Indiana
Scott Barnes enhanced his reputation overseas after wrapping up the Shifter Masters title at the Skusa Superkarts USA Pro Tour in Indiana last weekend.
Barnes went into the final day of the series, which was consolidated into back-to-back weekends as opposed to three because of Covid-19, with a 20-point lead over home-town favourite Joe Ruch.
Bermuda's top driver extended his points advantage by qualifying in pole position, picking up another ten points, before winning the pre-final race in a thrilling battle with his old adversary.
In the final race, where points counted for double, Barnes merely had to finish to secure the title and was happy to settle for second place behind Ruch, who finished runner-up in the overall standings.
Aside from adding another piece of silverware to his well-stocked trophy cabinet, Barnes has been granted free fuel and tyres for next year's series while his entry fee has been waived.
“We had a great weekend,” said Barnes, who was driving for Indiana-based Harden Motorsports Group.
“We knew Joe was going to be gunning for us on his home track. He was fast during both weekends. I had a slim lead heading into Sunday and knew I had to beat him in two of the three points races.
“The pre-final race was a complete battle between me and Joe. We switched positions back and forth a few times and I managed to pick up another ten points by winning that race.
“It was pretty cool knowing all I had to do was finish the final race to take the championship.
“I wanted to beat him and wrap up the weekend with win, but my team knew it was important not to go too crazy and wreck the car or anything.”
Although Barnes was disappointed his class only attracted four karts, he said the experience of racing in back-to-back weekends at the New Castle Motorsports was among his career highlights.
“Our realistic goal was a top three so to be able to win it, especially beating someone like Joe, as this was his home track, is a great feeling,” added Barnes, who was competing in his first Pro Tour championship.
“It's been one of my favourite championships. Three firsts and three seconds in the final races, and a bunch of pre-final wins ... I'm definitely stoked about it!”
Barnes, the new Bermuda Karting Club president, added: “I didn't plan on competing next year but now everything is free, I'll definitely be trying to defend that plate.
“I have to thank my team; I couldn't have done it without them.
The 35-year-old will now turn his attention to the SuperNats Shootout at the Speedsportz Racing Park in New Caney, Texas, in October.