FWT: Ben Cooper and Xen De Ruwe Quickest in Rotax DD2 Qualifying
The final rounds of the 2013 Florida Winter Tour are underway at the Ocala Gran Prix facility in the northern portion of the sunny state. This weekend seven Rotax Max class champions will be crowned, with many Rotax Grand Finals tickets also up for grabs. The short and flowing OGP track provides plenty of great racing, and with most championships wide-open it will surely be one to watch. Friday saw official qualifying for both Saturday and Sunday, setting the grids for the all important Pre Finals and Last Chance races.
Ben Cooper (Birel) once again should why he is the defending DD2 World Champion as he took the pole-position for Sunday’s Pre final with a time of 36.057 seconds around OGP. Cooper however wouldn’t go unchallenged for the top spot as he was only eight-thousandths of a second quicker than his main rival, Xen De Ruwe (Formula K). Marco Di Leo (Praga) put his IPK North America machine third quickest on the time sheets as he looks dislodge either Cooper or De Ruwe for a spot to the Grand Finals. Scott Speed is making his return to karting after taking a break from his Nascar Sprint Cup campaign this weekend and qualified in the fourth ahead of Kevin Ludi (Birel).
In the second session, De Ruwe zipped to the fastest time to earn the pole-position for Saturday’s Pre Final ahead of arch rival Cooper as the two would once again be separated by less than a tenth of a second. Ludi returned to form as he took third in qualifying less than a tenth behind teammate Cooper. Completing the top five in the session were Di Leo and Speed as the top-five drivers all should be close during tomorrow’s races.