|November 13, 2009 News
|Rotax Max Team Canada - Driver Profile - Hugo Ouellette
In an effort to showcase Canada’s top drivers, eKartingNews.ca will be profiling each of the Team Canada drivers making the trip in December to attend the Rotax Max Grand Finals in Sharm el Sheik, Egypt. Canada will again be heading to the Grand Finals as one of the largest contingents of top-flight drivers. Our thanks to our Presenting Partner for this eleven part series, Championship Karting International and the 2010 WSK North American Series Florida Cup.
Hugo Ouellette - Rotax Senior
| Hugo Ouellette heads to Egypt with Team Canada making his third trip to the RMCGF|
(Photo: Gregory Lussier - Babel Images)
Hugo Ouellette joins Team Canada for the long trip to Egypt by way of the ASN Canada FIA Canadian National Championships held this past August. Ouellette took the Senior Rotax Max title over a stacked field of 34 drivers that included his brother and 2007 Rotax DD2 Max World Champion Pier-Luc. Hugo had an outstanding weekend of competition and was able to capitalize on track conditions to grab the lead and check out on the field.
The Senior driver from Montreal showed his form quickly and never left the top three on the time sheets all week long. Hugo used his PSL Karting powered CRG to take third spot in timed qualifying behind two fellow teammates. Coming to grips quickly with the tight and twisty confines of Goodwood Kartways, Ouellette backed up that strong qualifying performance with a stellar run of heats. Running solid laps at every turn, Hugo took back-to-back heat wins in the first two sessions and followed that with a third place finish in the final of his three heat races. This put Ouellette on the front row along side brother Pier-Luc for the prefinal where he took second spot after the drop of the checkered flag.
With two seats for Team Canada on the line, the crowds lined the fences for the Senior Max final. Off the start it was PLO with the holeshot followed by Hugo as the field set in place. The action mid-pack was wild as a large incident occurred entering turn three resulting in the dampening of the braking zone for turn four. On the next lap PLO would be the first to encounter the mess, sending him off track and ending his day. Hugo would assume the lead and over the next three laps he would extend that lead. At the line it was Hugo with the win and a trip to the Rotax Max Grand Finals, this time with the title in hand. In taking the win Ouellette set fastest lap in the final and crossed the line five seconds up on the field – a dominating performance he hopes to repeat in Egypt in December.
2009 marks Hugo’s third trip to the RMCGF as a member of Team Canada. Joining Hugo on the trek to Sharm el Sheik will be his brother Pier-Luc, who has competed as driver in three previous occasions. This gives this dynamic duo loads of experience they will need to take on the world’s best Rotax drivers. Hugo was the first of the Ouellette family to go to the Grand Finals earning a pass as Junior National Champion in 2004 held in the Canary Islands. Hugo would start 18th for the prefinal and finished in 14th spot with a solid run. In the final he would battle hard for positions and was able to cross the line in 15th spot, a great finish for a first trip out completing all the racing laps.
Hugo would return the RMCGF in 2006 heading to Portugal this time as a Senior, taking second at the Canadian Nationals. He was joined by his brother Pier-Luc, who was in DD2 National Champion that same year. The race was held at Viana do Costelo in November of that year. Hugo would grab the 14th spot in the prefinal and look to improve in the final. A great run the final race would net Ouellette a top ten finish as he crossed the line in ninth spot.
2009 looks good for the 20-year-old driver as he continues to improve with each visit to the Grand Finals. He has racked up an impressive resume taking at least one major regional or national title in the five of the last six seasons for a total of 11 majors in six seasons.
| Ouellette enters the RMCGF as the reigning Canadian National Champion in Rotax Senior|
(Photo: Cody Schindel - Autosports Media)
2009: Canadian Rotax Max Senior Champion, Québec Champion Rotax Max Senior
2008: Québec Champion Rotax Max Senior
2006: Canadian Rotax Max Senior Vice-champion
2005: Coupe de Montréal Rotax Max Senior Vice-champion, Québec Champion Rotax Max Senior
2004: Champion Canadian Rotax Max Junior, Québec Champion Rotax Max Junior
2003: Québec Vice-Champion Rotax Max Junior, Coupe de Montréal Rotax Max Junior Vice-champion
Date of Birth: June 29, 1989
Hometown: Montreal, Quebec
Parents: Jean-Luc and Chantal
Height/Weight: 155/ 5’6’’
Education: CEGEP University next summer (international commerce)
Job: Working at the ICAR Academy
Chassis: CRG Road Rebel
Engine/Engine Builder: PSL karting
Sponsors: Justedupin.com / PSL Karting / ICAR Academy
Series You Compete In: Coupe du Quebec , Rotax Grand Finals
Years Karting: 8 years
How did you get started in karting? My cousin Jeffrey Petriello let us tried his little comer to me and my brother and it was it, my father had to buy one.
What has been the high point in your racing career? Winning this year’s Nationals in Rotax has been a high point, but going with my brother as mechanic in Egypt will be one as well.
What are your goals in racing? Be part of the World Rally Championship
In a few words, how would you describe your driving style? Smooth, intelligent, aggressive and yet not intimidating
Funniest moment at the racetrack? At the Canadian Nationals in Mosport, I gave an enormous swing to my rear wheels as my father was fixing the chain. Guess what happen to his fingers.
| Hugo will look to follow in brother Pier-Luc's footsteps and bring RMCGF glory back to Canada|
(Photo: Cody Schindel - Autosports Media)
Favorite Track: Lanzarote in Canary Island
Favorite form of professional motorsports: F1 and Rallye
Favorite karting driver: Pier-Luc Ouellette
Favorite professional driver: Senna and Villeneuve’s family
Favorite website: eKartingNews.ca baby!
Favorite movie: There will be blood by Paul Thomas Anderson
Favorite actor/actress: Denzel Washington, Brad Pitt
Favorite music/group: Moby
Favorite vacation/activity spot: Far in the woods with a can of beans
Favorite food: Surf and turf
The Real Deal
What do you do when not at the track? Schooling, socializing, reading
What are your goals outside of karting? Becoming influent in international trade
What type of street car do you drive? A car that gives you a headache if you go up 120 kph
What type of street car would you like to drive? For now the DBS Austin Martin and later, a limousine with private driver
What are your pet peeves or things that irritate you? Quebec road conditions, TRAFFIC, stupidity
What do you think could be done to improve the sport of karting? I think Rotax is doing a great job in the sport but we should create a non-profit cooperative that could considerably reduce cost and attract some more drivers and more talent. Find companies that could invest in karting and promote the sport.
What are your favorite aspects about the sport of karting? Competition and precision. A race weekend is like a trip on a desert island, I forget about everything.
For more information on Championship Karting International and the 2010 WSK North American Series Florida Cup go to http://www.championshipkartracing.com for all the schedules and details.