OTK Products Open 2022 Florida Winter Tour with Six Victories
Total of 19 podiums and 32 top-five finishes in Pompano Beach to begin winter ROK Cup USA series
Jeremy Fletcher led an OTK sweep of the top-five in the VLR Senior category (Photo: Canadian Karting News)
One of the more prestigious programs in United States karting is the Florida Winter Tour. A vast amount of history resides within the winter championship contested in the state of Florida, with several OTK race teams and competitors opening the 2022 series on a temporary circuit outside the Isle Casino Pompano Park in Pompano Beach, Florida over the January 13-15 time period. Due to impending weather, the event was condensed into two days of racing to avoid the storms forecasted for Sunday. Half of the victories in Saturday’s main events were won by an OTK kart, including 19 podium results and 32 top-five finishes.
Four of the categories featured a sweep by OTK of the top-five. It began in the VLR Junior division where Helio Meza (Iron Rock Motorsports / Tony Kart) was able to edge out polesitter Caleb Gafrarar (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic) by 92 thousandths at the line. California driver Charlie Smith (Nash Motorsportz / EOS) ran third in his FWT debut with Cooper Shipman (Iron Rock Motorsports / Tony Kart) holding off G3 Argyros (Speed Concepts Racing / Redspeed) for fourth.
Senior rookie Jeremy Fletcher (GWR / Tony Kart) recorded his first victory in the VLR Senior division, driving away to a six-second advantage. Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic drivers finished 2-3-4 with rookie Chase Hand, Wes Duchak, and Nolan Allison with Rocco Pasquarella (CDR / Kosmic) finishing fifth.
Defending series champion Renato Jader David (Orsolon Racing / Tony Kart) continued his winning ways in his home state, driving to victory in the Master ROK division. William Isaias (International Motorsports / Tony Kart) was a close second. Scott Roberts (Speed Concepts Racing / Redspeed) won the fight for third ahead of Mario Barrios (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic) with Rob Maier (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic) in fifth.
Junior ROK was the fourth class that OTK was able to sweep the top-five. The sweep was led by Jorge Ortiz (Supertune / Tony Kart), who advanced two positions in the Final to claim the victory. Polesitter Sebastian Wheldon (JC Karting / Kosmic) was a close runner-up. Steven Miller (CDR / EOS) won a tight battle for third ahead of Canadian Ayden Ingratta (Speed Concepts Racing / Redspeed) and Caleb Gafrarar (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic).
It has been a solid start to the 2022 season for Brazilian Matheus Morgatto in his return to Florida. He leads the SKUSA Winter Series championship standings and opened the Florida Winter Tour with victory in Senior ROK. Morgatto (AM Racing / Exprit) drove away to a two-second advantage to sweep the entire event for maximum points. Diego Ramos (Racing Edge Motorsports / Kosmic) put two OTK drivers on the podium, placing third. The other win for OTK on the weekend came in the support classes. Multi-time champion Mick Gabirel (AEM / EOS) continued his success in the 4-Cycle scene, driving to victory in the Briggs 206 Senior division.
Two additional drivers placed runner-up in the main events to represent OTK on the weekend. Rob Maier (Rolison Performance Group / Kosmic) in VLR Master and Daniel Dibos (Dibos Racing) in ROK Shifter Master placed second. Luis Umana (Supertune / Tony Kart) and Matheus Ramalho (Racing Edge Motorsports / Kosmic) stood on the podium with a third-place finish in Mini ROK and Micro ROK. Gianmatteo Rousseau (AM Racing / Exprit) and David Zhao (Goodwood Kartways / Exprit) placed fourth and fifth in those respective categories. Also placing fifth on the weekend was Barry Primus (Primespeed / Tony Kart) in ROK Shifter Master and Galo Barros (VTM / Tony Kart) in VLR Master. Completing the results in Pompano Beach for OTK was Alexander Dal Bon (Team Dal Bon / Tony Kart) finishing fourth in the Briggs 206 Master class.
The Florida Winter Tour returns to action over the February 17-20 dates, traveling to the Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida for a second straight temporary circuit event.
Drivers looking to compete with the most popular kart brand in the world or purchase OTK karts and components can contact their local OTK USA dealer. Head to www.otkusa.com for a complete list of dealers and details on the entire brand roster.