Karting: Potential Rok star

Karting: Potential Rok star
SPEED DEMONS: Above, Kezia Santoso says she can do much better than her eighth place in the Elite Senior DVS category of the Singapore Turf Club Rok Cup.
PHOTO: KF1 Karting Circuit

In a pool of 73 drivers on the final day of the Singapore Turf Club Rok Cup 2015, Kezia Santoso was one of only three female racers - along with Singaporeans Elaine Chee and Chloe Choo.

Kezia, the 16-year-old Benz Motorsports driver who has been karting since the age of 12, was the best performing of the girls at the KF1 Karting Circuit in Kranji last night.

Chloe and Elaine finished 14th and 16th out of 19 racers in the KF1 Rok/Rok50 category respectively.

Meanwhile, Kezia finished eighth out of 14 drivers in the Elite Senior DVS category, earning just 44 points after clocking a time of 15min 07.292sec, but she had no complaints.

Speaking to The New Paper, the Jakarta native said: "I don't think I did too well, because it's definitely not the best time I've ever recorded. Far from it, actually.

"I'm still getting used to this track and the different conditions at this circuit.

"But, so far, after the four races we've had here, I've made some progress, so I guess I can have something to be happy about.

"I'll have more opportunities to qualify for the International Finals, so I'm not sweating about it."

FINAL

Three previous rounds - on April 25, May 30 and June 27 - were held at the circuit, building up to last night's final.

Five different categories were contested, namely the Mini Rok, Junior Rok, KF1 Rok/Rok 50, Elite 30/40 and the Senior DVS.

The ultimate prize: podium finishers of each category would receive a spot at October's International Final in Italy, an incentive that is only offered to local licensed drivers.

Alex Kattoulas of SCUDERIA Power earned top honours in the Mini Rok category with 310 points, while Prassetyo Hardja took the top step with 308 points in the Junior Rok category.

Spectators saved the biggest cheers for local favourite Larry Tan of AIBI-Life Fitness, who claimed the chequered flag in the KF1 Rok/Rok 50.

Jon Lee of team TPCRG took home the overall trophy in the Senior DVS category with 272 points.

David Bondi of Benz Motorsports led the pack with 248 points in the Elite 30 (for over 30-year-olds) while Jeremy Lee of Veritas Racing blazed ahead in the Elite 40 (for over 40-year-olds) category with 248 points.

Kattoulas, Tan, Jon Lee, Bondi and Jeremy Lee will be joined by fellow Singaporean Caelan Wong of Benz Motorsports - the best local driver in the Junior Rok Category - for the trip to Italy in October.

"We noticed an increased interest in competitive karting after the first round of the Rok Cup in April, especially among those who have a passion for the sport but are less experienced in racing," said Richard Tan, managing director of KF1 Karting Circuit.

"We are delighted that the Rok Cup was such a great success and also look forward to our local champions taking their performance one step further at the Grand Finals in Italy.

"The event has attracted many renowned international karters such as Presley Martono from Indonesia, Roberto Toninelli from Italy and Sasakorn Chaimongkol from Thailand.

"It is a testament to the world-class standards of the KF1 Karting Circuit and to Singapore's status as a key player in the global karting scene."

haiqals@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on July 12, 2015.
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