Off to the races

Go-karts take over down­town Elk­ton dur­ing first Mini Grand Prix race

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By BRI­ANNA SHEA

bshea@ce­cil­whig.com

— Go-kart rac­ers took over the down­town streets dur­ing the first Mini Grand Prix on Satur­day af­ter­noon.

More than 150 peo­ple

ELK­TON

came out to watch 12 gokarts zoom around the down­town area dur­ing a se­ries of four races or­ga­nized by Elk­ton-based Premier Auto & Tire.

Each race con­sisted of 12 laps with all 12 rac­ers par­tic­i­pat­ing in the first race, then nine in the se­cond race and seven in the fourth race, which was the main event. The third race acted as a con­so­la­tion race.

All money raised dur­ing the event was do­nated to Union Hos­pi­tal’s new cancer cen­ter.

Bran­don Hol­len­baugh, co-owner of Premier Auto & Tire, said the grand prix raised more than $5,000 for the hos­pi­tal.

“I feel won­der­ful about,” he said. “It’s def­i­nitely im­por­tant to me be­cause of the fact that my mom passed away from cancer.”

Af­ter the races con­cluded, peo­ple gath­ered in front of the Elk­ton Cham­ber and Al­liance build­ing for the tro­phy pre­sen­ta­tions. Three rac­ers were given tro­phies in each race for a to­tal of 12 tro­phies. Sev­eral other tro­phies were also given out in spe­cial cat­e­gories.

The main event win­ner was H&B Plumb­ing, who had the fastest time of 12 min­utes 21 sec­onds. Se­cond place was awarded to Wil­liam Chevro­let with a time of 13 min­utes 26 sec­onds and third place went to Premier Auto & Tire with a time of 14 min­utes 57 sec­onds. Twelve go-kart rac­ers com­peted in four races dur­ing the first Mini Grand Prix on Satur­day in Elk­ton.

Mean­while, the Mayor’s Choice Tro­phy was awarded to Team Beiler and the team spirit award was given to R.F. Brown.

H&B Plumb­ing, which had two driv­ers in the grand prix, was the over­all win­ner of the day. Andy McEl­roy, 15, drove in the se­cond and fourth races while Le­gacey Ca­vanaugh, 15, par­tic­i­pated in the first and third races for the com­pany.

“It felt great,” McEl­roy said of the race. “Be­cause I didn’t think I could do it (win).”

McEl­roy said it was an ex­cit­ing race be­cause it was sus­pense­ful and in­tense and he wasn’t sure who was go­ing to win.

McEl­roy and Ca­vanaugh both said they par­tic­i­pated in the event be­cause they were asked by Bob Mef­fley, the com­pany’s owner and Ca­vanaugh’s grand­fa­ther.

Ca­vanaugh said the races were fun for her be­cause she was able to go “fast around the track.”

Bran­don Hol­len­baugh said he thought ev­ery­one who at­tended the event en­joyed them­selves.

“I thought ev­ery­body was def­i­nitely ap­pre­cia­tive and had a lot of fun,” Hol­len­baugh said. “It was def­i­nitely re­fresh­ing see­ing ev­ery­body hav­ing fun and get­ting along.”

Hol­len­baugh said he thought the event went well for its first year.

“Hon­estly, I think it went ex­tremely well, first of all for our first event,” he added.

While there were a few set­backs such as the weather and a few me­chan­i­cal go-kart is­sues, in­clud­ing chains com­ing off and two en­gines fail­ing, the is­sues were fixed, he said.

“We over­came it all,” Hol- lenbaugh said. “Ev­ery­body got to race.”

For next year, Hol­len­baugh said he re­ceived lots of feed­back about how to im­prove for next year such as prep­ping the chains on the go-karts and bet­ter ways to time the races.

His wife, Ni­cole, said they hope to have the event again next year if the town ap­proves.

“We hope to have it every year,” she said.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY DAVID MEL­LON

Go-kart rac­ers make their way down Main Street dur­ing the first Elk­ton Mini Grand Prix on Satur­day.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY DAVID MEL­LON

Caro­line Bruce waves the race flag dur­ing the first Mini Grand Prix on Satur­day in Elk­ton.

CE­CIL WHIG PHO­TOS BY DAVID MEL­LON

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