SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt - South Africa's Christiano Morgado won a tense, dramatic battle with the Netherland's Ricardo Van de Ende and Adrian Estasy of Australia to capture the Rotax Max World Finals at Ghibli Raceway in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.
SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt - South Africa's Christiano Morgado won a tense, dramatic battle with the Netherland's Ricardo Van de Ende and Adrian Estasy of Australia to capture the Rotax Max World Finals at Ghibli Raceway in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. Morgado's victory was the fourth consecutive Rotax world championship South Africa - the only country to win the title.
Team USA's Juan Sanso and Jordon Musser endured a long day, mid-pack, trying to move forward in the tight competion of equally-powered karts. Sanso, from Costa Rica, finished 17th, while Musser, from Texas, placed 24th position. This was Musser's second visit to the Rotax Max World Finals; he failed to make the finals last year in South Africa.
The final laps of the Finals were an edge-of-the-seat affair. Van de Ende, a former winner of the British Formula Ford Festiva, led from lap 3 until the next to last lap, when Morgado slipped past. At the same time, third place Estasy had closed up behind the two leaders after working hard for 10 laps to join the battle for the lead.
Morgado's move on Van de Ende allowed Estasy to get a run and take the lead on the next to last lap, only to have the South African take it back early on the final lap. Van de Ende then repassed Estasy to take second. As Morgado flashed raced under the checkered flag, the crowd let out a roar and a huge South African flag flew."
"I'm very grateful and extremely happy," said Morgado, a 24-year-old business administration university student from Durban, a town on South Africa's eastern coast. "I wanted to follow Ricardo. He was very quick and I hoped we could work to get together and get away. Towards the end I could see Adrian closing. On the next to last lap I got a run on Ricardo and got by. Then Adrian slipped past and I repassed him. I just tried to get a sense of what was happening and take advantage."
For Team USA, Sanso was content with being the top Americas finisher and for the opportunity to compete in an international world
The Rotax Max World Finals is an international karting championship that draws competitors from more than 35 countries.
The Rotax Max series engine uses the Rotax FR-125 Max (FR-125 Junior for the Junior Max Challenge) with no modifications allowed. Engines are sealed by Rotax to block any modifications. The chassis types are also sanctioned by the Rotax and "spec" Bridgestone tries are used.
For more information on the Rotax Max World Finals, visit www.maxchallenge.com and www.ghibliraceway.com.