Extreme race thrills for Pretoria 12 May
Gauteng race fans have much to look forward to when the national championship Extreme Festival visits the Zwartkops Raceway outside Pretoria for its third round races Saturday 12 May with something to please everyone thanks to a broad and varied race and support program. Topped by the next instalment of the Sasol GTC, Engen Polo Cup and Investchem Formula 1600s nationals and backed up by national challenge G&H Extreme Supercar and Red Square Kawasaki ZX 10 Masters Cup action on two wheels, the day will be rounded off by local autObarn SuperHatch and Car Care Clinic 111 Sports & Saloon action.
Just eleven points separate the Sasol Global Touring Car Championship top three, with Engen Audi duo Simon Moss and double-GTC champion Michael Stephen sandwiching Gennaro Bonafede’s Sasol BMW up front with leading privateer Michael van Rooyen in close attendance aboard his RSC BMW. Daniel Rowe won the last race at Killarney in his Volkswagen Motorsport Jetta and he will be keen to continue his good run, while Robert Wolk (Sasol BMW), Johan Fourie (EPS BMW) and Mathew Hodges (VW Motorsport Jetta) keen to make good on their troubled title starts.
Trevor Bland is the surprise leader of the Sasol GTC2 title chase in his Universal Healthcare Golf GTI, but it’s all been about the flying Keagan Masters’ Volkswagen Motorsport Golf GTI, who has had more than his fair share of foul luck, but still sits just two points adrift on the championship table. Mini duo Brad Liebenberg Ferodo and Devin Robertson and Charl Smalberger’s Sabertek Golf GTI are also all hoping for a step forward in their home races, while in that title chase, the likes of Golf GTI duo Adrian Wood and Johan Pretorius, Dayne Angels’ Honda Civic Type R and newcomer Bob Neill’s Ford Focus remain dark horses in what promises to be more wild Sasol GTC2 action.
There is however little doubt what many a Zwartkops race fan’s favourite action will be come Saturday 12 May, with the ever-popular G&H Extreme Supercars set to thrill as they chase that outright lap record and while everyone loves Charl Arangies and his awesome Aston Martin Vantage GT3, it’s a case of who will be the first to beat him. Rest assured that Zwartkops Ferrari F430 brothers Jonathan and Mark du Toit will lead the charge with Nicky Dicks’ Porsche also baying for Arangies' blood and Dawie Olivier leading the BMW charge interspersed with the likes of Subaru Impreza STis and Chevy Lumina V8s in what promises to be another Big Z highlight.
Getting back to national action, Kempton Park lad Jeffrey Kruger has made the Engen Polo Cup his own so far this season, but the former European Golf Cup champion will have his work cut out to maintain that advantage at this round which happens to go down at most of Polo teams’ home track. Jeff will have to deal with Masters ladies and gentlemen, Tasmin Pepper, Juan Gerber, Charl Wilken, Shaun La Reservee among others, as well as hungry Juniors, Clinton Bezuidenhout, Daniel Duminy, Keegan Campos, Delon Thompson, while there are also a few other drivers keen to get their Polo seasons onto the front foot.
Bloemfontein lad Stuart White is another driver to dominate so far this season and he remains unbeaten in Investchem Formula 1600, where he is chasing that series’ Mazda Road to Indy shootout prize. He will also not have it all his own way and with Cameron O’Connor fresh back from his US Formula 4 debut, never mind Alex Gillespie, Nicholas van Weely, Siyabonga Mankonkwana, Liam Pienaar, Andrew Schofield and Tiago Rebelo keen to get one over the Free State flyer, Saturday 12 May’s Zwartkops single seater highlight should be most entertaining to watch…
The Red Square Kawasaki ZX10 Masters will provide two-wheeled thrills if any of their recent races are anything to go by as Sven Grune and Graeme van Breda continue to defy their age and their courage when they pick up where they left off dicing flat out up front last time around. Pieter de Vos, Jaco Gous, Brian Bontekoning and Gareth Bezuidenhout are among those who have been in hot pursuit so far this season and any one of them would be delighted to steal a win in another class that is bound to thrill at Zwartkops.
Two excellent regular Zwartkops race classes will add to the 12 May spectacle and if the stormy action that went down on a wet track last time out is anything to go by, then remember to stay trackside when the autObarn SuperHatch lot come out to race. Expect Honda Civic duo Brett Garland and Jonathan du Toit and Werner Pieterse’s Golf to pick up on their robust action with Chris Davison’s Superboss, Alex Marques’ Polo and Nic Martin’s Opel among those keen to get among the action up front ahead of the regular great show right through the field.
The Car Care Clinic 111 Sports & Saloons also offer a broad and interesting field with everything from Neil Lobb’s TVR Chimaera and Louis Cloete’s wicked Beetle taking on George Bezuidenhout’s former Touring Car Primera and everything from Golf bakkies, Porsches, Lexus and Subarus to a horde of Golfs, Polos, Ballades and the rest in classes set by the driver’s ultimate lap times to ensure tight and enjoyable racing.
So rest assured that there is something special for everyone at Zwartkops Saturday 12 May when the Extreme Festival national championship races come to town backed up by the best local classes and a broad selection of off track activities from kids entertainment to stalls and live music to guarantee a day of fun for the entire family as usual. Adult entry is R120 per person, students enter for R90 and under 12s get in free. Find Zwartkops on the R55 Road near Laudium in Pretoria West and visit www.zwartkops.co.za for more info and to book your tickets now.