But racing with brother Richie was best!
The recent sixth Northern Regions Karting Championship and African Open weekend was a big one for Jozi karting lass Tiffany Napier - not only is she riding the crest of the wave right now as she turns her thus far disastrous season around, but Tiffany is also loving racing alongside her 25 year old brother Richie for the first time…
“All my hard work, physical and mental training as well as all the BirelArt SA team’s seamless input is seeing a change of fortune,” Tiffany explained. “It’s been a very hard year and there were a few times I thought of throwing in the towel, but I have fought on and now the results are starting to come.”
Tiffany was quick in Friday practice for the regional races, but qualifying didn’t work out as planned and she ended up 11th on a 20-kart grid. “I knew I had good race pace and I was delighted to be able to use that to fight up to sixth in the first heat in what was basically a National field with all the quickest Junior Max racers from all over the country here to prepare for the next day's African Open.
“I struggled a little in heat 2 — I was a bit unlucky on the start and I finished ninth, but the final was great — I managed to make my way through the field to finish sixth, but best of all I set the fastest lap of the race! “Pity there wasn’t a fourth race where I could start on pole, but I was very happy with seventh overall and an effective third among my regular Northern Regions rivals for the day.
“Saturday was very special for me in another way — I was racing alongside with my brother,” Tiffany explained. “Richie was the South African Junior Max champion in 2007 before moving on to a four year stint in the VW Polo Cup and it is so cool to have him in the pits, racing and able to relate to his experience. “Richie did well to finish 9th overall out of a 30 strong field on his comeback — an excellent achievement, considering how many years he has been out a kart and that it was his first time ever in a DD2.”
Big brother Richie was delighted by his comeback “It wasn't the perfect day, but we went very well,” Richie admitted. “We struggled to get my rented kart to dig out of the corners like I wanted it to and then that old DD2 malady took me out of the weekend early — I hurt my unprepared ribs on Saturday and I was in too much pain to race, so we had to withdraw from Sunday’s African Open.”
That did not stop Tiffany from giving it her utmost once again and Sunday dawned warmer than the previous day and still, to see the young lady’s confidence to an all time high. “Qualifying was reasonable — I ended up seventh despite a mistake on my second flying lap of the Superpole, but the racing was excellent — I finished seventh in the first pre-final, fifth in the second and sixth in the all-important final, which earned me a huge trophy, so I am absolutely delighted with my day!”
“Now we are very much looking forward to the upcoming last round National at Zwartkops in September — it’s time to put the rest of the national season behind me and to salvage some points to end the year off in style — bring it on!