Matthew Latifi, a member of the Sofina Foods Drivers’ Development Program and the Ferrolati Corse Karting Team continued to show speed and run wheel-to-wheel with the best cadet racers from around the world. Making his first trip to the Homestead Karting Complex, Latifi took in an abbreviated schedule in the Formula Kart TaG Cadet class to prepare for the Rotax Micro Max weekend of racing. The nine-year-old racer was solid in his second full weekend at the Florida Winter Tour as he joined the 33-kart field to take on the challenging permanent parking lot track located at the Miami Homestead Speedway. Stacked with drivers from around the world, Latifi also took the opportunity to work with tuner Steven Chapman as the duo continue to develop their cadet package. With so many new challenges, Latifi will look to use the FWT as a chance to develop a baseline for the 2013 season.
On the schedule for Friday was official timed qualifying for both the Saturday and Sunday events. For the Saturday program, Matthew would go 14th in qualifying and he would back that up with an 11th place start for the Sunday racing calendar.
Starting from the seventh row in the all-important Saturday prefinal, Matthew dropped back off the start as the field scrambled through corner one and then battled back to finished 20th making passes and completing all the laps. In the final it was a nice charge forward as again Latifi was able to make critical moves and passed 10 karts to cross the line in 10th for his first top ten in just his third start in FWT Micro Max action.
Sunday was another full slate of racing and a chance for the young driver to continue to showcase his skills. A tough start in the prefinal saw contact as the field streamed into corner one with Latifi dropping back a few spots from his row sixth starting place. In the short prefinal Matthew was able to get back a couple of positions but had to settle for 19th at the line. The final was another tough battle at the end of a gruelling three-day event and Matthew was caught in the turn one mêlée crossing the stripe in 30th on lap one. The young pilot put his head down and began a charge forward. By lap 10 Latifi had already moved into 19th place and was lapping quicker then the karts in front of him. With just a few laps remaining, the gutsy driver kept on the pressure and crossed in 16th place, making up 14 spots in just 14 laps.
“It was a challenging weekend for Matthew, but I am so proud of him for keeping his head down and pushing himself forward,” comments David Tennyson, coach for Latifi. “Matthew has not even completed one full season of karting and to be battling with drivers in TaG Cadet was more than impressive. Matthew did a nice job battling back and making good passes in the Micro Max weekend. I expect to see him move up the grid when we get to Ocala.”
Up next for Latifi and tuner Chapman will the third and final round of the FWT to be held at the Ocala Gran Prix Circuit in mid March.
The Sofina Foods Drivers’ Development Program was created to help Canadian karting series offer young drivers a goal and a prize to work towards. In 2010 and 2011, the Sofina program supported the Eastern Canadian Karting Championship as well as Team Canada drivers going to the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals. The Sofina Foods Drivers’ Development Program is proud to support Canadian drivers reaching the international motorsports stage.
For more information about this release, please contact David Tennyson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Sofina Foods Inc.
Sofina Foods Inc. is a privately owned Canadian company headquartered in Markham, Ontario dedicated to providing great tasting, high quality food products for retail and foodservice. As one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of primary and further processed protein products, Sofina Foods has a broad portfolio of branded and private label pork, beef, turkey, and chicken products. Sofina’s family of branded products consists of: Lilydale, Janes, Mastro, San Daniele, Fearmans Pork, Fletcher’s, Vienna, Cuddy and Quality Meats. Sofina Foods currently operates 18 HACCP-approved manufacturing facilities (17 in Canada and one in the northwestern United States), three hatcheries and has over 4,700 employees.