Markham, Ontario’s Marco Di Leo has competed in a lot of different karting events over his career. This week he will add the Rok Cup International Finals to that long list of major international races he has participated in. Di Leo qualified to compete in this weeks blockbuster through the Rok Cup Canada shootout at his home track of Goodwood Kartways and says he’s looking forward to participating in Italy, which is known as the heart of karting.
“I’m really looking forward to participating in the Rok Cup International Finals in the heart of karting at the South Garda Karting track in Lonato, Italy. It will be a great experience to race against some the worlds best drivers and teams on familiar equipment.”
Di Leo is no stranger to representing his country on the International stage, competing many times at the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals, but this will be his first shot at the Rok Cup title, in which the Senior category has attracted over 80 drivers from around the world. For the first time in a long time though, Di Leo will get to utilize a chassis he is familiar with as he teams up with the Intrepid Driver Program from Italy for the big race.
“For me, this will be a great opportunity to work with the Intrepid Driver Program and test the latest chassis models and also work with some of the most talented Vortex Rok engine tuners in the world.”
“I’ll be soaking it all in and bringing that knowledge to the Florida Winter Tour and Rok Cup Canada.”
Earlier this year, Di Leo, owner of Goodwood Kartways and Intrepid Canada with his family, announced the Rok Cup Canada program as an alternative racing opportunity. The first race was a hit and Rok Cup Canada has five drivers represented this week at the Rok Cup International Finals. It’s a new deal for Di Leo and while he felt skeptical at first that the International Final didn’t feature an engine lottery, he has grown to the idea and is excited to see first hand how the event unfolds in Italy.
“To be honest, at first I was skeptical on the Rok Finals not being an engine lottery race but after seeing the parity in engines at the first few races in Canada, I think it’s great that the fate of your weekend doesn’t involve drawing a ‘lucky’ engine.”
Di Leo will also have a teammate with him in Italy as Joe Crupi qualified for the Rok International Final and will race in the same category as Di Leo, although he will be scored as a Master. It will be Crupi’s first big international race and a chance for Di Leo plans to show him the ropes at the track and at the Vortex and Intrepid factories, which the two plan to visit before the race officially starts.
“I’m happy to have my teammate Joe Crupi with me as he tries international kart competition for the first time. Fortunately for the both of us, we were able to participate in the Trofeo Attuno regional race this weekend before we tackle the 400-plus drivers at the International Final. Joe couldn’t be more excited for the race and is equally excited for the tours at the Intrepid Kart and Vortex Engines factories, both located within 40 minutes of South Garda.”
After competing in a tune-up race this past weekend with many of the same drivers he will compete against, Di Leo is ready for Wednesday when the Rok Cup International Final officially gets underway.
“I can’t wait to hit the track and grateful for the opportunity to be part of Team Canada and represent!”
CKN will be trackside at the Rok Cup International Finals. Be sure to follow along with all the action as a number of Canadian drivers will be in attendance.