|What||Wingfield Motors Power Series Round 1 Report|
|Where||Killarney International Raceway, Cape Town|
|When||Saturday 17 February 2018|
Fans treated to extreme Cape racing action
Killarney’s 2018 racing championships exploded into action as a dazzling display of crunching racing kept a sizeable crowd entertained throughout a perfect Cape summer’s day at the opening Wingfield Motors Power Series meeting on Saturday. The action was fraught on track as cars and bikes produced spectacular dicing, while red flags flew to stop the action as it on occasion came a touch too close on more than one occasion.
Marcel Angel won the fastest Pirelli Sports & GT car races of the day in his Ferrari, while Mark Ridgway surprised in the V8 Masters and Andrew Moffit came out on top of the Makita Supercar fight. It all went the way of last year’s champions Umpie Swart, Eden Thompson and Marco Busi in the BurlyPro GTi Challenge and on two wheels, David McFadden raced to RST Suzuki South Superbike victory, Danie Maritz and Chris Williams shared RST Trac Mac & Clubmans wins and JP Freidrich was dominant in Powersport.
Andrew Rackstraw took open wheeler honours, Danie van Niekerk won Mikes Place Clubmans car races and Jaco Lambert the Shatterfix Fine Car races. It was a fine day’s racing all-round and with just three weeks before the next round, battle lines are drawn for the rest of the season.
Looking at the action in a little more detail, the fastest races of the day — the Pirelli Sports and GTs, were all about Marcel Angel and his marvellous Ferrari 458 GT3, but not before the demise of dominant first race leader Andre Bezuidenhout’s Juno Nissan and third-placed Steve Humble’s Mallock. That left the way open for Clinton Thorne’s wild, winged Lotus 7 replica to steal second from Colin Plit’s Juno-Honda, Mike Verrier’s Shelby-Nissan and Porsche duo Andre Brink and Peter van der Spuy.
Angel was untroubled in his run to second race and overall victory with Plit second from van der Spuy, Thorne, Craig Javis’ magnificent new Viper racing from the back after first race issues and Doug Macdonald’s Shelby Nissan. Class B winner Plit emerged second overall from Thorne, van der Spuy, Class C winner Verrier and Macdonald, while John da Silva took Class D honours in his Audi TT.
Mark Ridgway emerged a surprise V8 Masters first race win over Fabio Tafani, Rob Warrington, Rene Dalais, Brian Evans and Harry Taylor after the race was stopped mid-distance when Stephen Young lost it under braking and collided with race leader Marcel Angel, only for that melee to be joined by Sean Moore, who spun into the two stranded cars. The race was re-started with a slow Tafani dropping down the order, but good enough for second in the merged results.
Tafani bounced back to take race 2 from Ridgeway, Young, Schreuder, Evans and Angel who’s team managed to repair his hurt car between races as Ridgeway took a memorable overall win from Tafani and Evans. Ridgway took Gold Class honours, while Harry Taylor won the Silver class.
Glen Phillips won the opening heat of an equally bruising pair of Makita Supercar races over Andrew Moffitt, but Phillips went out of race 2 to allow Moffit to take the win and the day overall from Silver Class runners George Williams and Martin Bensch with Bronze winner Brian Fourie fourth from Nashrene Schloss and Jarryd Evans, who ended up second in race 2 after race 1 dramas.
Exceptional GTi Spectacle
Talking about bruising racing, the BurlyPro GTi Challnge dished up its regular dose of exceptional spectacle with the red flag coming out barely before the new season had even started after a collision between Class B driver Mario Roux and Class C lad Chris Swart. Umpie Swart then proceeded to romp to victory in his Polo Classic over Polo trio Johan Pretorius, Paul-Hendrik Franken and Francois van Tonder, a rather lonely Class B winner Eden Thompson and Class C victor Marco Busi as all three class champions won their opening races of the new season.
Class B runner, Gideon Serfontein fought back through the class C stampede to finish ahead of the Class C runners, Shane Williams holding off Giordano Lupini and Jarred Simpson for second in Class C after Jacques Geldenhuys and Bryan Morgan both hit trouble late in the race.
Swart took a far closer fought and highly entertaining second race win over Driver of the Day Paul-Hendrik Franken and van Tonder, while Serfontein beat Thompson to the Class B win and Busi watched his class C rivals fight it out in his mirrors as Williams escaped a late race oil slick that reshuffled the field behind him to see Gert du Plessis home third in Class from Morgan, Lupini and Simpson in a wild race to the line. Swart took overall victory from Franken and van Tonder; Thompson beat Serfontein to the Class B trophy and Busi took the Brat Pack win from Williams, Lupini and Simpson.
David McFadden rode to an opening RST Suzuki South Superbikes race win over the duelling Yamaha R1 duo Brandon Haupt and Gerrit Visser and Trevor Westman’s Kawasaki. Hayden Jonas sped his Yamaha to Supersport win in fifth over Brandon Staffen and Rob Cragg (Kawasaki ZX10) took the Masters win. Haupt turned the tables on McFadden to take the second race after a late race move, with Visser and Westman in pursuit. Jonas was made to work for the second Supersport win as Cragg took Masters again. McFadden did enough through all of that to take the overall win for the day.
In other two-wheeled action, veteran Danie Maritz powered to the opening RST Trac Mac & Clubmans Motorcycles race win over Wessel Kruger (Honda), Chris Williams (Ducati), Shamier Alexander (Yamaha), Willem Binedell and Leslie Sim while Honda riders Wayne Arendse (Honda) took Class B from Giovanni Massa’s similar machine. Williams however turned the tables on Maritz in race 2 with Kruger, Alexander and Bindell next up, while Arendse had Byron Evans’ Yamaha to deal with in Class B. Maritz won the day from Williams and Kruger.
JP Freidrich took a pair of dominant wins to take overall RST Trac Mac Powesport Motorcycles honours for the day on his Suzuki over Kawasaki duo Chris Williams and Mike van Rensburg and Kewyn Snyman on a KTM. Zante Otto and Willem Louw were next up after sharing fifth and sixth places.
Danie van Niekerk powered his BMW to an easy opening Mike's Place Clubmans race win over Brennon Green’s rapid Golf, while Jesse Huggett’s Jetta had to fight off Michael le Sueur’s Golf for third with Class B winner Paul Munnik (Golf) and Class C winner Ernest Roos (BMW) next up. George Neethling (Golf), Wayne Smith (Jetta) and Mansoor Parker (BMW) took Classes D, E and F while Daniela da Souza took Class X. Van Niekerk made it two in a row in race 2 to take overall honours for the day over Le Sueur and recovered B winner Basie Burger, while Roos, Neethling, Johan Groenewald (Golf), Parker and Devin Cumons (Jetta) took the class wins.
Single seaters too
Dee-Jay Booysen powered his Formula M to the opening Formula Libre open-wheeler race ahead of karting convert Andrew Rackstraw’s Reynard Formula Ford and Jason Greyling (Forza-VW), with Formula Vee trio, another ex karter Delano Fowler leading reigning champion Byron Mitchell and Blaze Nicholas in a wonderful dice for fourth. Booysen ran into trouble early in race 2 to leave Rackstraw to take the win and overall honours for the day on his Killarney main circuit debut over Greyling, the dicing Fowler and Mitchell, Nicholas and Cyril Somerville in another Vee.
Jaco Lambert took his Volkswagen Fox to the opening Shatterfix Fine Cars race win among an interesting and varied grid ahead of Elton Hurst’s Skyline and Jan Koekemoer in a Mazda RX7. Veterans Arnold Lambert, Louis Powell and Robert Toscano were next up. Lambert Junior again beat Hurst to race 2 honours, but Lambert Senior’s Jetta put one over Koekemoer for third.
There’s a short break before the next Wingfield Motors Killarney Power Series meeting Saturday 10 March — diarise it now!