White is SA's youngest-ever Endurance winner
Bloemfontein driver Stuart White added yet another significant notch to his racing belt on Saturday when he became the youngest-ever winner of an endurance race in South Africa when he drove the Fantastic Racing Maui Formula Renault he shared with Craig Jarvis and Stephen Young to victory in the Mopar African Endurance Phakisa Six Hour race in Welkom.
17-year old White had qualified the Fantastic Racing machine second on the grid, before starting the race for the team, where he initially shadowed the race leading Ginetta before moving into a comfortable lead he would hold until handing the car over. Stuwie returned to the wheel for the final stint and quickly regained the lead, before pitting for fuel with half an hour left to run. He rejoined the track in third position, 30 seconds behind Dayne Angel’s race-leading Ferrari 458 GT3 with Danish driver Michael Jensen’s Ligier-Honda in second.
“It wasn't easy,” Stuart recalled the chase. “I was half a minute behind and my tyres were past their best, but I put my head down and gave it my all. “I was taking a couple of seconds out of the Ligier every other lap, because the traffic was also coming up in all the wrong places, but Michael was also closing in on Dayne in the Ferrari! “It was exciting stuff — I could see them both; I was catching all the time and we were eventually all three within one second with about ten minutes still to race…
“Jensen made a move in the Ferrari first and I took advantage and followed him through and then I waited for a good chance to pass Michael and took the lead on the following lap. “Both the Ligier and the Ferrari slowed after that so it was a cruise to the finish, but I was listening to every noise, feeling every vibration in the car and I was delighted to see the flag. “Last year we lost this race in the last hour, this year we won it in the last ten minutes, so it was a double victory in that sense.
“I was also very happy to give my Fantastic Racing team boss Mark Lauth a great birthday present on Saturday and we could not have done this without a great team — it was also the first time I have raced together with my co-drivers Craig and Stephen and both of them drove brilliantly too and this year the car ran like a train — thanks again to everyone who helped make it happen!”