Ryan Sy is putting on a brave face as he takes on the world at the ROK Cup Superfinal 2023 this October 11/14 at the South Garda Karting in Lonato, Italy. The 13-year-old earned his slot after winning the local Rok GP Junior Championship and will be representing the Philippines in his first-ever world finals.
The ROK Cup Superfinal serves as the annual culminating event of a year that brings together the champion karters from 20 national ROK Cups around the world – spanning from several continents such as North and South America, Europe, and Asia. For the 2023 edition, over 400 entries have already been confirmed in the provisional entry list. 108 of those are competing in the Junior Rok category where Ryan will serve as the lone entry from the Philippines.
Ryan enjoyed a dominant campaign in 2023, winning 5 out of the 6 races in the Rok GP Super Karting Series. The year started strong with 3 consecutive victories at the Carmona Race Track and Clark International Speedway – Kart Track. He then enjoyed back-to-back wins at the double header season finale last September to be crowned Rok GP Junior Champion 2023, earning him an entry into the ROK Cup Superfinal.
Ryan has been consistently preparing for the big event, focusing his training sessions on both driving and fitness. Although the pressure is high, the young karter is enthusiastic to deliver results in Italy especially with the support from his team Formula E Racing Management, coach Elson, and all of his friends and family.
The exercise is an opportunity for Ryan to learn and further improve his race craft as he competes against champions from other countries. This is also his goal when racing in the Asian Open Karting Championship (AKOC) where he currently leads in the Junior Open Class with one round to go in December.
The first official day of the ROK Cup Superfinal takes place on Wednesday (October 11) with the Finals scheduled on Saturday (October 14).
Ryan Sy: “It’s very unique and nerve wracking because it’s my first time racing at this level with 100+ drivers and elimination rounds. Although I’ve been to Macau and Langkawi before, in Italy we’re expecting to compete against the best of the best so it’ll definitely be a challenge. I just hope we can make it through the elimination rounds and get a good position in the Finals, but I can’t set my expectations too high because I’m not that familiar with the competition.”
[Photos by Matt Romualdez]