Entering the final round of last year's CIK Stars of Karting Series Kel Treseder held a 14-point buffer over Matthew Wall in the Pro Gearbox standings. For the second year running he enters the final round as the series leader, however, this time there are seven drivers within ten points in the standings.
The 'Magnificent Seven' is headed by last year's series runner-up on 229 points. Despite not having won a round so far in 2011, the Bundaberg driver finds himself with a slim four-point gap over last round winner Tyler Greenbury at the top of the standings.
In equal third place behind Treseder and Greenbury in the standings is second-generation racers Macauley Jones and Jason Pringle on 222 points. Reigning series champion Matthew Wall is in fifth place on 220 points, one marker ahead of South Australian Scott Taylor and David Sera, who missed the opening round due to commitments in America.
While he believes he learnt a lot from last year's defeat, Treseder is not underestimating the challenge ahead of him if he is going to become the 2011 champion.
“Last year we had 14 points to Wall-e only, the difference this year is that there is seven drivers within ten points rather than just one,” said Treseder.
“While I'm in front, I might as well be in seventh, it's that close. It's going to all come down to gets it right on the weekend, who finishes every race and who finishes on the podium.
“It's also going to be a measured performance – especially in the heat races then see how much everyone has got left in the tank out on Sunday.”
Greenbury claimed his maiden round win at round four of the series in July, however, but like Treseder he is very aware that there's still a very long way to go before the champions name will be engraved on the John Pizarro trophy.
“There's a fair bit pressure on everyone entering the round but I'm not going to approach it any different to any other event, well I'm trying not to anyway,” said Greenbury.
“I really want to go well for Brain (Hicks), he's put a lot into my racing over the past year or so and really want to win it for him.”
Practice begins on Friday ahead of qualifying and the heat races on Saturday. A pair of 25-lap encounters will be contested on Sunday.