Killarney podiums for Smalberger, Need
Lee Thompson Racing returned home from Cape Town with its fair share of the silverware after Killarney’s Extreme Festival races over the weekend after Sasol GTC2 driver Charl Smallberger won the day and Engen Volkswagen Masters driver Simon Need ended up second overall for the afternoon.
“We had a great weekend,” Team principal Lee Thomson confirmed.” Charl won another GTC2 race overall and Simon was second in Masters - mission accomplished!”
It was another very good weekend for Sasol GTC2 privateer Charl Smalberger and his iCorp Volkswagen Parts LTR Golf GTI. “Pole position, a fastest lap, two podiums and the overall win for the day! Charl grinned. “I’ll take that with both hands, thank you very much!
“Things went very well, although we had a bit of a problem on the dyno on Thursday but we came to a good compromise and practice also went very well. “Qualifying was great and I stuck it on pole straight out the box on new rubber — it was a great start. I’m really chuffed with that achievement.
“I drove into the lead on the start of the first race, but Trevor Bland made a dive pass on me into Turn 2 — maybe I should have defended better but it was a good move. “I had a good dice with Trevor and Keagan Masters from there and I made a few good moves, but Keagan had an issue and I then made a small mistake and lost contact with Trevor and had to settle for second.
“That meant I was eighth on the race 2 grid, but I had a great start to move up to fourth — passing a Mini and Nick Adcock into turn 1. “It was wild for a few laps and I then moved to pass Iain Stevenson, but we made contact and that let Brad Liebenberg’s Mini by, so I had to fight my way back past him around the outside of Cape Town corner. “The guys out front were too far away to catch, but I still pressed hard and set the fastest lap of the race.
“I’m happy with third place and the overall win for the day — we scored good points and I have a chance to pass Trevor for second in the Championship in the four races still to come. “Keagan is too far ahead to do very much about, but you never know — thanks to Lee and the guys — they were very happy with our weekend, which is a good thing!”
It was also a positive day for Simon Need, who improved yet again to place his Photonics Polo second in Masters in the day’s Engen Volkswagen Cup races. “I am very happy with our result today,” the Mauritius-based Welshman explained. “We ended up 11th overall and a second in the Masters class.
“Practice went well, but qualifying was disappointing — I was too cautious and ended up 17th, but I made a good start and climbed to ninth before Paulus Franken and I made contact and I dropped back, but I still managed to finish 12th. “I made another good start in race 2 to get into 10th, but I made a mistake and lost a few places to end up 13th and ultimately 11th overall and second in the Masters class.
“A huge thank you to Lee Thompson Racing and Lee in particular for his great input for both the car set up and the best way to tackle the races.”