Story By Hayley Hart/Viking/ @hayleylhart
The 42nd annual Mini Grand Prix was hosted at the PCC on the Lawn with about 60 people in attendance who were primarily participants in the race Chili Cook-off and the Mini Grand Prix royal court Saturday, April 22.
The royal court for the Mini Grand Prix consisted of three participants: Erwin Vindel, 19, an aerospace engineer and member of the John Fylpaa Leadership Institute; Adelita Gonzalez, 18, an accounting and business administration major and member of club PNK; and Alexander Simpson, 18, an economics major affiliated with the club Men of Aztlan. Simpson was head royal, winning the $250 scholarship prize money.
Simpson said, “I heard about it about three weeks ago. I was never able to run (in the Mini Grand Prix) due to injury so I figured I could do this.”
The champion of the women’s race was team Aztlan Team Lotus. The second and third place winners of the Prix for the women were teams Athena Asthma and Tong Lil Sisters. For the men’s race, Tong Red won first place. The second and third place winners were teams Tong Black and Aztlan Gold.
Before the judging of the Chili Cook-off, PNK member, Kylee Cruz, 20, a nursing major, said, “We had all the ingredients. The gameplan was to do the instructions exactly and then change for taste.”
Cruz was cheering for the PNK teams from the chili tent. She said, “They are doing pretty well. I’m happy about that.”
Jason Zubia, 39, going for a horticulture certificate, was cooking the chili for the Horticulture Club and said, “We didn’t have a lot of cook time, so we are hoping everything tastes good.”
The first place prize for non-traditional chili went to PNK while second and third place went to Thor and TnT. For the traditional chili team, PNK also earned first place while TnT and the Men of Aztlan took second and third place.
Thor won first place, PNK and Welding and Metal Fabrication Club tied for second and Horticulture Club and TnT tied for third in the People’s Choice category. PNK also won first place for chili booths with a Flintstones-themed booth, while Ladies of Athena and Human Services Club won second and third place.
The tight turns and quick switches through the course lined with hay bales at the Mini Grand Prix received the most attention from the club-heavy crowd cheering for their fellow racers throughout the event.