Canadian Thomas Nepveu put forth a brilliant drive on Sunday to win the Rok Junior Final, capping off a stellar weekend of racing for the young driver at the final stop of the 2018 Rok Cup Florida Winter Tour.
After qualifying on the pole-position Friday, Nepveu found trouble in his first heat race. He battled back in the second and third and ensure his starting spot for the Final wasn’t too bad, it wasn’t as he ranked tenth after the heats. He charged forward immediately in that PreFinal, taking the win by 3.7 seconds and then truly showed his power in the Final, by taking the win and leading almost every lap in PSL Karting BirelART machine.
In the Final, Ugo Ugochukwu (TonyKart) jumped to the early lead, gaining the advantage on Nepveu into turn one. However, his time at the front lasted only two laps, as Nepveu made his way to the lead down the back straight. Two laps later, Brazilian Matheus Morgatto (Parolin) and Arias Deukmedjian (Kosmic) worked their way by Ugochukwu to take second, but it was too late by then as Nepveu had already begun to build up his lead.
Up front, it was quite calm from there as Nepveu managed his gap and Deukmejian didn’t seem to have anything for Morgatto. It is also worth noting that Deukmedjian started the PreFinal in the fifteenth and his recovery to the podium was quite impressive.
At the checkers, Nepveu celebrated the win while Morgatto celebrated the championship as his second place enough was enough. Deukmejian completed the podium Ugochukwu and Tyler Gonzalez (TonyKart).
Prime teammates Marcello Paniccia and Mackenzie Clark got themselves in a little trouble in the Final, each getting a two-position penalty. Paniccia would wind up twelfth while Clark was fifteenth. Gabriel Savoie (REM/Kosmic) was twenty-first in Rok Junior debut while Nolan Bower (VSR/TonyKart) was twenty-third.
Joining Morgatto on the championship podium were Ugochukwu in second and Nepveu in third.