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Fickle Climate No Match for College’s ‘Mini-Indy’ Teams

Joshua M. Poole drives go-kart in Sunday's parade laps.Pennsylvania College of Technology’s “Mini-Indy” teams were rewarded at Sunday’s awards ceremony for their hard work and preparation for this past weekend’s 10th annual Susquehanna 500.

In the Stock competition, the team of aviation technology students − Justine Wareham, Joshua Poole, Shaun McQuay and Daniel Clark − finished fourth out of a field of 25 go-karts In the Modified division, aviation technology students Nicholas Klein, Justin Eshleman, John Deihl and Michael Ferrucci finished third.

This year’s competition was particularly challenging due to the constantly changing fall weather, which varied from sunny and 70 to windy, rainy and cold several times throughout the weekend competition in Williamsport’s Brandon Park.

Twice, track incidents left the team in last place. Each time, the team was able to drive through the field from last place into the top three.

Several “behind-the-scenes” players also were highly instrumental in the Mini-Indy weekend success.

From left, students Justin A. Eshelman and Nicholas J. Klein%3B driving coach Thomas D. Inman, associate professor of avionics%3B and students Michael B. Ferrucci, Shaun M. McQuay, John R. Deihl, Justine R. Wareham, Daniel P. Clark  and Linh H. Do.“Automotive faculty John Macko and collision faculty Roy Klinger spend countless hours of their free time preparing the karts mechanically for the race, while automotive faculty Wayne Smith fine-tuned the engines for efficient performance,” noted Steven Wallace, assistant dean of transportation technology. “Aviation faculty Tom Inman and Wally Gower were also key to Penn College’s success.”

Inman organized, trained and coachedboth teams, while Gower and studentsLinh Do, Raymond Kanapesky and Chad Wilcox− in addition to welding students − helped in the paddock to keep the karts in top shape between events.

“John (Macko) went well beyond the call of duty to not only to make sure the modified cart was ready to race, but also to stay the weekend and ensure they remained in top condition,” Inman said. He additionally thanked Gary McQuay for helping the team as a “go-fer,” flagger, chauffeur and photographer; William Emerick for help at the Aviation Center and supplying radios and a “special block of wood,” and Matthew Branca for supplying radios.

“Finally, we were extremely proud of the appearance of our karts at the Mini-Indy event, largely due to the efforts of collision faculty Al Thomas and Chris Croft. Chris did a remarkable job in repairingand reshaping the kart bodies, while Al painted and decorated the car for the race,” Wallace said. “Our success in this race was truly the result of a cohesive team effort that paid obvious dividends.”

( Photos by Gary E. McQuay, project manager, Plastics Manufacturing Center)

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