Daily Report by: ROK Cup USA
Photos by: Canadian Karting News
From Around the Paddock
It’s a brand-new race season, and a new era, for ROK Cup Promotions and ROKKERs as many have descended to the Sunshine State for the start of the annual Florida Winter Tour. Taking on their 25th consecutive season of competition, teams and competitors set up and worked through the first full day of practice at the barrier-lined circuit in the parking lot of Tropicana Field. With a track that is like the 2021 event with a few minor upgrades, the ROK Cup USA staff have once again done extraordinary things to put on the best, and the safest event possible. With entries over the 180 mark, ten drivers will earn the title of a 2023 Florida Winter Tour race winner by the time the final checkered flag flies on Sunday.
A new era in ROK Cup Promotions sees Mike Burrell take the helm as he navigates through his first ROK Cup USA event and first Florida Winter Tour campaign as the face of the program. Hit with challenges this week including fewer days to complete track setup, a federal holiday to start the work week, flight delays for staff, and more, Burrell worked through the issues with the help of his ROK Cup USA staff.
“I think it is important to show how valuable the ROK Cup crew is,” explained Mike Burrell. “There are very few changes from last year as the ROK program was run very well behind the scenes and that was proved again this week with everyone working as one team to get the job done.”
High temps today crested over the 70F mark, but changes could be in store for the weekend. With Friday’s temperatures and conditions forecasted to be like today, Saturday brings in cooler air and the chance of rain. With temperatures back to the mid-70s on Sunday, wind will move into the area with gusts forecasted to be more than 25mph during the main events.
Entries and Teams
Once again, the ROK Cup USA program welcomes entries from around the globe. With teams from the United States, Canada, and Mexico in attendance, drivers from those three countries as well as Brazil and Europe will vie to become the first winners of the 2023 Florida Winter Tour. Entry numbers have crept toward the 200 mark with just over 180 number of ROKKERs hitting the track today.
In the attempt to bring live stream coverage to the Florida Winter Tour in 2023, ROK Cup Promotions has partnered with Kart Chaser to provide video coverage trackside in St. Petersburg. With Live Stream coverage available on the Kart Chaser YouTube channel, ROK followers can also visit the ROK Cup USA social media pages for direct links once the official competition begins as well as the ROK Cup app and website for Live Timing options.
Media Packages Available
Cody Schindel of CanadianKartingNews.com, the official ROK Cup USA Photographer, has made the trip south to the Sunshine State. With event photos available, please click HERE to order your media package.
Stay tuned to the ROK Cup USA social media pages for news, information, photos, results, and daily reports from the first round of the 2023 Florida Winter Tour at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg.