A young local driver will be heading to the track overseas to compete with the world’s finest go-kart racers.
Dexter Hucal, a Grade 9 student at Mecca Glen School, will be heading to Milan, Italy for the Rok Cup International Final on Oct. 18.
Hucal qualified for the finals after taking first place in the Canadian Rok Cup Championship where he competed in a series of races in Chilliwak, British Columbia, Regina, Saskatchewan and Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta.
He will be the only Canadian in the Junior class and is excited to be racing against the best around the globe.
“I’m looking forward to the experience of competing against other drivers in the world,” said Hucal.
In Italy, Hucal will be up against 60 drivers from different countries and is currently preparing himself for the intensity of the race.
“A lot of people think that it’s just driving,” he said. “But there is a lot more to it, strategy, you have to be aggressive, know when to pass, etc.”
Hucal will be driving a 125 two-stroke kart and the speed at which Hucal can go depends on varying factors, including the track, but he has reached up to 160 km/h in some of his races.
Hucal is coached by Riley Will, from the Calgary-based Overdrive Motorsports team, and he is busy weight training and biking to keep himself in good shape before the competition.
There are many challenges and areas to focus on before the race as well. Maintaining the go-kart and ensuring that it is perfect to race can also be tedious as temperature, tire pressure, jetting of carborator, axel and gearing can all affect the kart’s speed.
The 14 year old was interested in go-karting since he was eight years old when his parents introduced the sport to him. Hucal was first looking at motorbikes but grabbed onto the four wheels after his father, Danny, built him a go-kart. Since then Hucal has built on his driving skills, competed across western Canada and the United States and won numerous trophies.
“I’ve always liked it,” he said.
Hucal will be leaving for Italy on Oct. 10 where he will put together his go-kart and prepare himself mentally and physically to compete against the best in the world.