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Driver of Day White steals 6-hour show

Saturday’s 2017 season-opening South African Endurance Series Goldfields 6-Hour may have been a true tale of the tortoise and the hare, but while that hare may have been vanquished, it also saw to a new endurance racing star being born.

Fifteen-year old karting prodigy Stuart White took the Driver of the Day following a stellar performance aboard the ungainly looking but excruciatingly fast Fantastic Racing Formula Renault 3.5 — essentially a single-seater racer with cycle wings, which albeit hobbled by fuel issues in the end, allowed Stuart to deliver a racing tour de force.

It was a difficult weekend for Fantastic Racing team, Mark Lauth, Danish driver Michael Jensen and White. “It was great to start off with,” Stuart explained. “We showed amazingly good speed in warm-up — my 1 minute 33.1 lap really boosted the team, but we did not get to set a qualifying lap when the fuel pump failed to switch on and that meant we had to start from the back of the grid.

“The race started of really well with Michael coming from the back to take the lead early in his stint, before handing over to me for a 2 hour stint.” Stuart put in a brilliant drive, showing devastating pace to move the team into a 2-lap lead. “Then Mark took over and extended the lead to over 3 laps, but we ran into a mechanical issue when the high pressure oil pump for the gearbox packed up.

“The team did its utmost to sort it out, but we where forced to retire the car from a podium finish in the last 20 minutes. “But as they say, that’s motor racing!”

“It was a great weekend, which never would have been possible without Mark Lauth, Michael Jensen and the Fantastic Racing team, which did an absolutely amazing job behind the scenes. "I would like to thank everyone who made this possible, for an incredible opportunity.”

Stuart was awarded the Driver of the Day award for his efforts. Now young White turns his attention to the opening round of the new wings and slicks South African Investchem Formula Ford Championship at Killarney in Cape Town 25 March, before jetting to Nogaro for the opening round for the French Formula 4 championship 17 April.