Johnny Johnson

Morgatto magnificent in Ocala

One driver on top nearly throughout the weekend in Junior ROK.

Matheus Morgatto
Morgatto likely the new Junior ROK championship leader heading into Orlando in four weeks. Photo: Kart360

The rising star under the new A.M. Engines - Parolin tent, Matheus Morgotta, had no equal on Sunday with a walk away victory in Junior ROK, and a great overall points weekend for the  championship.

Morgatto’s only blemish on his report card was his first heat race, finishing second. After that it was four wins in a row, including the 28-lap final.

Arias Deukmedjian came in as hot as anyone and went steady through the heats, finally finishing 2nd, 2-seconds behind the Brazilian. It was right where he started, which had been his best stuff of the weekend.

Ugo Ugochukwu caught everyone by surprise in Palm Beach, but nobody overlooked the small stature of the young American last weekend. Once again, the Koene USA pilot put in solid results with a third place final and a great shot at the championship in Orlando.

Just off the podium was Jace Denmark Gessell and Connor Zilisch. Gessell saved his best for last and should be able to hold his head high with the fourth place result without seeing the Ocala circuit until Thursday.

Zilisch may have been the most impressive over everyone considering where we thought the rookie Junior driver may finish. Right away he had a front row qualifying run next to Morgatto, with only a small sampling of runs in a full size kart. Remember, Zilisch had just won in Palm Beach as a Mini competitor, and here he was out qualifying 29 other karts in his first Junior ROK weekend. After a pair of heat wins on Saturday, Zilisch was still Morgatto’s main threat going into Sunday. A disappointing result in the pre final saw the North Carolinian drop to tenth, but rebound to a top five which — given this field — is insanely impressive.

Tyler Gonzalez has not had quite the start to the season as he did last year. The SCR driver grabbed a heat race win right off the bat, but that mark was never reached again, finishing the weekend with a mechanical very early in the final.

Mathias Ramirez
Johnny Johnson
Ramirez dives under Cabrera on final lap in Shifter ROK

Despite having the championship in his hands, the Parolin driver still chose to go for the win — and it paid off.

Thomas Nepveu
Johnny Johnson
Nepveu completes his Super Sunday; Morgatto holds onto Junior ROK Championship

Canadian Thomas Nepveu ran away with the win on Sunday, while Morgatto did enough for the season championship.

Ryan Norberg
Johnny Johnson
Norberg finds his way on Sunday in Senior

It wasn't easy, but the better pace won out in the end.

James Egozi celebrates his win
Johnny Johnson
Egozi climbs four spots in final lap of Mini ROK

Not one, but two avoided wrecks kept the Floridian in it until the end.

Ryan Norberg
Johnny Johnson
Working his way forward, Norberg makes it to the top on Sunday

A technicality drops Ramos from victory in Senior ROK.

Magno Gaia
Johnny Johnson
Gaia claims win and championship in Master ROK after Phillips comes in underweight

The win was just icing on the cake for Gaia's dominate FWT championship season.

Johnny Johnson
Florida Winter Tour Orlando: Qualifying Heats

A roundup of all categories and the standings after heat racing concluded on Saturday.

Johnny Johnson
Florida Winter Tour Orlando: What to watch for

No Championship is yet safe, making for an exciting finale to the 20th Winter Tour.

Ocala Gran Prix curbing
Johnny Johnson
FWT Ocala: what to watch for

An increase in points opportunities means it's still anyone's game.

ROK Shifter starting grid
Nick Leone
FWT Palm Beach: What We Learned

An impressive display of driving from nearly 200 drivers kicked off the 20th season of the Florida Winter Tour.