Ryan Sy brings home Rok GP Junior Championship after dominant 2023 season


Winning 5 out of 6 rounds, Ryan Sy finally sealed the 2023 Rok GP Super Karting Series Junior Championship last September 9/10 in dominant fashion. The 13-year-old was victorious during the season finale at the Carmona Race Track (CRT) and brought home the crown.

It was a new beginning for the standout karter after signing with Formula E Racing Management at the start of 2023. However, the journey towards the 2023 Junior Class title was not easy for the young driver. Ryan shared that he had to overcome several challenges. He had to stay in top shape, improve his race craft, and handle pressure as there were high expectations from him being one of the faster drivers on the grid.

What helped Ryan stay mentally focused was the advice given to him by former Lotus F1 junior driver Marlon Stockinger, that he can be nice off the track, but should be aggressive on the track.

Perhaps his biggest hurdle in 2023 was overcoming a huge crash that occurred during the Clark International Speedway night race. His teammate collided with Ryan at speed and sent him into the wall. The impact was so severe that it damaged his helmet and sent Ryan to the hospital. Fortunately, he was able to escape with only minor injuries.

The DNF was also a huge blow to his title hopes as it allowed fellow Formula E Racing karter Luis Segundo to move into the points lead. Ryan knew he had to bounce back hard as he reminisced, “After the crash in Clark, although on the spot we were emotional and the thought of having to compete again in a more difficult track was uneasy, I knew that I couldn’t just stop or give up.”

Ryan knew that there was no room for error during the double header weekend at CRT. He kicked off Saturday’s proceeding by setting the fastest time during the Time Trials before winning both Heats 1 and 2 to secure pole position for the Finals. As the only Junior karter able to lap under 1-minute mark, he was untouchable. Ryan simply put his head down and breezed through 11 laps to secure a lights-to-flag victory with a commanding 5.481 secs lead.

He continued his pursuit for the 2023 championship on Sunday with another 1st place in the Time Trials. But he made an uncharacteristic mistake during Heat 1 and momentarily lost the lead to drop down to P3. Tapping into coach Elson’s advice of “being patient but aggressive at the same time,” Ryan eventually regained the lead to cross the finish in 1st place.

The cancellation of Heat 2 due to poor weather was a major setback as Ryan was still 8.5 points behind in the standings. This left him with no other option but to win the Finals if he wanted to secure the championship. Despite all the odds stacked against him, Ryan gave his heart out one last time in the final race of the 2023 season. After the lights turned green, he drove 11 perfect laps and took his #79 LN Racing Kart to victory lane with the Junior Class title in tow, winning the crown by a mere 4.5 points.

Ryan Sy: “It’s a feeling that can’t quite express in words. I felt a big relief after crossing the finish line knowing that I won the Junior championship. I can now put my crash in Clark behind me and prove my doubters wrong. I’d like to thank my parents for believing in me and motivating me throughout my karting journey, the Chan Family for all their support, coach Elson and Uncle Red for giving me the strength to drive, and uncle Theo for the season.”

Ryan Sy is supported by Formula E Racing Management in collaboration with PCRC. For more info and updates, Like the Ryan Sy Racing page on Facebook and follow @ryan_sy_racing on Instagram.

[Photos by Bong Boado]