FWT Ocala ROK Cup: The Photo Review


Big wrecks, rain racing, and victories highlight our look at different moments last weekend.

A badly damaged kart of Gianfranco Mazzaferro
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A brutal accident on the first attempt of the ROK Senior Shifter Heat 2 start was tough to watch. PSL driver Gianfranco Mazzaferro stalled on outside pole, as Mayo Livingston and Baylor Griffin could not avoid the sitting kart. Griffin went over Mazzaferro, being thrown from his kart. Lucky everyone walked away from the scene of the incident.
Miguel Costa puts his hand up on track in Ocala for Florida Winter Tour 2017
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Wave for the camera! Although he didn't have the weekend he desired, Miguel Costa kept a positive attitude throughout the event. We expect to see him attend the Orlando event, with hopes of improving his season thus far.
Austin Garrison gets talked to by his mechanic Andrick Zeen
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"Do what you do best," is what we assume Austin Garrison's mechanic, Andrick Zeen, told him moments before the final. On rails the entire week, Garrison was forced to work his way up from 14th to take victory on Sunday due to an accident in the pre-final. Despite falling just short of the championship, the J3 driver gave us a great idea of how his season will shape up.
Ariel Castro and Pedro Cabrera slide around the final corner in Ocala in Masters ROK
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Tandem drifting in Masters ROK? Pedro Cabrera and Ariel Castro go head to head for the runners up position, as Gaia Magno ran away with it. Castro had been out of official racing conditions for quite some time, but didn't hesitate to show his skill goes far beyond motor building.
Ruben Barrichello celebrates with his arms wide open in Ocala for Florida Winter Tour 2017
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Vai, Rubens! After three rounds, utter commitment, and a whole lot of battling, Rubens Barrichello can check "Florida Winter Tour winner" off his bucket list. After making the right set up call in the wet final, the ex-Formula one and current Brazilian Stock Car ace went on to take victory by three seconds in the final.
Ryan Norberg pilots his Birel ART in Ocala for the Florida Winter Tour 2017
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4th will do. Ryan Norberg brought his Birel ART home a 4th place finish, enough to take the championship from a committed Austin Garrison. His instructions for the final were to finish within the top 14, and with DNF's occurring, only a disqualification could stop his championship win.
Jonathan Thonon and Antonio Serrevalle chat on the pre-grid
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The master and the apprentice. Jonathan Thonon gives Antonio Serrevalle some pointers before heading out for the heats. The guidance certainly worked as the CRG driver set the fastest lap in the prefinal.
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Mazzaferro got off to a great start, attaining a second place qualifying position. Unfortunately, his weekend would go down hill from there. Numerous incidents and chassis issues plagued the Canadian world final attendee's chances of a strong finish, as he would DNF with a mechanical failure in the final.
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It's Aboissa, no it's Magno. Forgetting his helmet home in Brazil, it was tricky to differentiate which Orsolon Racing pilot was behind the 672 machine. Regardless, after wet conditions threw off Ariel Castro's dominant run, Gaia Magno ran away in the final to take victory.
Arthur Leist
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Arthur Leist is yet to show us he is capable of victory in this years 2017 Florida Winter Tour championship. He's one of the top rookies in any category, but still has work to do to match Norberg and Garrison's abilities. With the Rotax weekend only days away, he will have one more shot at proving to the karting community that he means business.

The Florida Winter Tour ROK Cup portion has concluded after the final round was ran March 10-12, 2017 in Ocala, Florida. Now we look at different moments in the weekend. ROK Cup Promotions now takes over the ROK Cup categories in the United States for the remainder of the year in their Florida and Midwest championships, starting in early April.

Photos and words by Nick Leone for