"Parc ferme simulations and wheel-to-wheel action pushes drivers to find speed"
Article By: Race Tech Development
Ocala, Florida - October 22, 2012 - In preparation for the upcoming Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals in Portimao, Portugal, fourteen members of Team USA were seen on track this past weekend at a private test session. Taking place at the pristine Ocala Gran Prix facility, team drivers were greeted with sunny skies and perfect conditions as well as a host of new karting packages for each and every driver. With three days on track, competitors would leave the facility happy with their speed as they look forward to competing at the 'Olympics of Karting.'
"The guys at OGP did an amazing job in getting ready for this and helping Team USA," expressed Team USA captain Alan Rudolph. "I would like thank Jorge for allowing us to use all of his equipment, amazing hospitality and his support in our efforts. I have no doubt that this will make for a stronger team overseas in December."
Mounting seats on Friday morning after a team breakfast, drivers would hit the track in an open practice session as they worked with the crew and other drivers to test the Birel, Haase, Mach 1 and Sodi Kart chassis. Continuing with a full day of testing on Saturday, Team USA drivers and tuners would run through several parc ferme situations to allow new team members to understand the importance of being on time and the happenings at an international event. With transponders fixed to all karts and access to each other's data and on track videos, drivers would all run similar times as their counterparts. Sunday would see a mini race in the morning as drivers had the opportunity to battle one another in racing conditions.
"What Jorge and OGP has done for the team is incredible," explained Team USA member Danny Formal. "It was good to have a chance to test the karts before heading overseas."
Another Team USA member, Oliver Askew, added, "It was nice to be able to compare yourself to the other drivers in your class on similar equipment. We all seemed to work really well together and I think we have a chance at multiple world championships in Portugal."
With on site catering for everyone in attendance, drivers, families and their crew would remain well fed and hydrated throughout the weekend. With breakfast, lunch and dinner catered each and everyday, it was a fun and friendly environment under the tent while it was business as usual on track.
While this would be the only time that some of the drivers would have the opportunity to test these karts, others will return to the Ocala Gran Prix facility in the coming weeks to continue use of this equipment for free. Oliver Askew and Ashley Rogero will run next weekend's Ocala Gran Prix local event aboard Birel chassis with D1 tires while Bill Lester and Rene Martinelli will be back on track with their Haase rides and Floridian Danny Formal will look to schedule some future tests behind the wheel of his Sodi Kart. Multi-time Team USA member Sam Beasley went the extra mile and purchased his Sodi Kart from Ocala Gran Prix post test and will continue testing at home.
Below is a list of drivers that participated in the test:
Juan Manuel Correa
"I would like to thank all the drivers for coming to the test," explained Jorge Arellano. "I know the expense of karting is tough at times and I am happy that I can help out. The help for these Team USA drivers will continue in Portugal as I have arranged for private buses and a translator to be with us at all times. I am excited to get to Europe and show the world what America has to offer."
For more information on Ocala Grand Prix, OGP race team opportunities and info on how to get into karting, please visit Ocala Gran Prix online at www.OcalaGranPrix.com or contact them at 352.291.0600 or via e-mail to: Info@OcalaGranPrix.com .
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