Karts champs are on track

OUTLAW KART CHAMPIONS

ZACHARY HEINZ -- BEGINNER BOX STOCK

Zachary was just 5 years old when he raced his first full season in the beginner box class. The little but mighty young lad made a lot of fans and friends at the racetrack.

Zachary's bright red hair, spiked on top, and face full of faint freckles, were nothing compared to his smile and passion for the sport.

"I love racing," said Zachary. "It makes me feel like a champ."

It's not everyday a 5-year-old wins a championship, in any sport.

"I learned more by having a lot of cars to race against. It made me better. The more cars, the more fun it was."

His favorite person to race against was Hunter Colodny, "because he's fast."

Zachary said the only reason he wanted to win the championship was, to get a trophy bigger than him.

Zachary is the son of Marlowe Heinz and Katherine Heinz, both of Carson City, and he has two sisters, 3-year-old Elizabeth and 1-year-old Emily.

MATT VALLARINO -- BOX STOCK

Matt Vallarino is also a first-time champion. He's raced three years now, all years in the box stock division.

"I'm moving to the 125 class next year," said Matt.

Matt said there was some pretty exciting racing this year. The track was good, but sometimes it was rough to drive on.

"At the beginning of the year it was tough (the competition). Then my dad built me a better motor and I was faster. Then it got easier to beat the other cars."

Matt aspires to drive several different series as he grows up. Sprint cars, Indy cars, NASCAR and even the fastest racecar in the world, the supermodified.

Matt was also the winner of the "Perpetual Trophy," which is given out to the winner of the main event on a designated date of racing. Matt will keep the trophy until next season, when another date is selected and another winner, maybe, takes the checkered flag.

Matt's dad is Ray Vallarino, he has one brother, Bobby; three sisters, Amber, Krystal and Kim; three step-sisters, Kristina, Jennifer and Heather, and his mom is Jackie.

JOHN HARRINGTON -- 125 DIVISION

Thirteen-year-old John Harrington won the 125 division in this, his rookie year. His first three years of racing was in the box stock division.

John said the beginning of the year went pretty well for him. The competition was in new cars and it took them a while to get used to them. Then they all got better.

"The points race got real close after James (his brother) got used to his car, and Jordan (Dargert)," said John, whose brother Danny also races, in the box stock division.

"I think I've gotten better as a driver. And I like the bigger race track, you can build up more speed."

John will stay in the 125 class at least one more year, then move to the open division. He is the son of Carla Harrington, and wants to get special thanks to Grandma and Grandpa, Cathy and Jim Saburn, for everything.

LARRY DEVLIN -- Open Class

Larry Devlin, 42, of Reno, began racing motorcycles at the age of 7. He moved to go-karts when he was 12 and was racing stock cars at the age of 15 at Chico's (California) Silver Dollar Speedway. He drove a 360-sprint car there, too.

Devlin moved to Reno three years ago from California. Don Waite, a family friend, put Devlin into one of his karts. Devlin said he drove it two years and Waite basically gave him the car.

This is Devlin's first championship -- ever.

"The competition was great," said Devlin. "I have a nephew and brother who race with me. It's neat having the family involved.

"All the drivers who run with us are really good guys. There's a couple of rivalries, but that's racing. It's all in good fun. Jay (Dargert) fell back a little bit (in the race for the championship), then started coming back.

"The track changed all year long, it got better. The other guys were running 500 ccs, I have a 250 (engine). They weren't running as hard as they could on the track when it was shorter. Then they made the track bigger, it had longer straights and I had to shift my car to keep up with them. My car is a good handling car, it runs good for me."

Devlin said his history of racing absolutely helped out in winning the championship.

"I don't think I was lacking in that area," Devlin said laughing. "But I had a little bit of a power problem, I had to make up for it somewhere."

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