Teen Stays the Course in Gatorz Karting Cup Streets of Willow

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The Gatorz Karting Cup Streets of Willow Springs is an annual event. Rotax powered sprint racing Go-Karts rumble through a high-speed 1.8 mile course near Rosamond, California.

14-year-old Jacob Pearlman 14-year-old Jacob Pearlman
At Willow Springs International Motorsports Park there are over 120 feet in elevation changes, 2 long straights at 1000 feet and 20 banked, decreasing radius 180 degree turns.

Jacob Pearlman, 14 of Carslbad, California hit the track early with 85 other Rotax competitors. “Jacob’s day went off to a rough start,” said Jacob’s father Richard Pearlman. “A kart ahead of him ran off the track and into the dirt. It kicked up a chunk of loose pavement that struck Jacob on his left knee. He sped off the track and into the dirt at more than 50 mph. After a quick check by paramedics, Jacob was ready to go back on the track.”

At speeds as high as 85 mph, 5 karts were nose to tail to take the 2nd through 6th qualifying spots. “Jacob qualified 4th,” said Pearlman. “He posted an identical time, down to 1/100ths of a second as the 3rd place qualifier.”

The Pearlmans use K&N Engineering products. “We use the K&N Kart Air Box and K&N Air Filter,” he said. “K&N Products provide us with a cost effective solution for a very expensive hobby. I just clean the products and reuse them.”

In the 15 minute heat, Jacob’s motor began to pop and sputter in the draft, but he was able to hold on for a 5th place finish. The 25 minute main event went 17 laps. “Jacob took advantage of a wild start and moved up to 3rd coming out of the first turn following a drop of the green flag,” said Pearlman. “Jacob stayed in line with the leaders and remained at 3rd. After three laps, Jacob’s motor began to pop and sputter again. He had no choice but to try and stay in the race as his engine continued to fade. At the end of 17 laps Jacob finished 10th.”

After the race, Pearlman said his son was disappointed. His kart had a broken reed valve. “Jacob is taking a few weeks off from racing to focus on school,” said Pearlman. His next Gatorz Rotax race will be at California Speedway.

Follow Jacob Pearlman's progress at the K&N news site.  Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

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K&N Engineering, Inc., with headquarters in Riverside, California, has been the world's leader in performance filter technology since 1969, serving the needs of the automotive, motorcycle, marine, industrial and military markets. K&N is heavily involved in nearly every form of motorsports from off-road and powersports to drag racing, stock cars and road racing. For more information about K&N Filters, please contact K&N Engineering, Inc., P.O. Box 1329, Riverside, CA 92502-1329, (800) 213-4182 for a dealer near you, (800) 858-3333 for technical service/questions, (951) 826-4001 Fax, e-mail, or visit