WhatBurlyPro GTi Challenge Round 4 Report
WhereKillarney International Raceway, Cape Town
WhenSaturday 8 June 2019
CommunityCape Town, Western Province.

Chris, Eden & Giordano top wild GTis

Saturday’s 20th birthday Burly Pro GTi Challenge races delivered the expected extreme action in a day of drama and attrition that is have become a hallmark of the Cape Town series over two decades of brilliant racing. Christopher Swart took an unexpected but popular overall and Class A win after twice ending second behind Colin Nicholas Meder and Mark Fontini. It was  also a good day for Eden Thompson, who consolidated his Class B title advantage with two wins to move to second in the overall title chase, and an even better day for Giordano Lupini, whose double Class C win increased both his class and overall championship advantages.

The day started dramatically with a mad qualifying session on a wet and slippery track first thing Saturday morning. Nian du Toit not only escaped the Turn 1 gravel trap, but found enough space to claim pole position before finally getting his Allied Fibreglass Jetta 3 firmly stuck in that same trap again later in the session. For the rest, it was a lottery dodging slow traffic, but Colin Nicholas Meder (International Tube Tech Polo 6R) found himself second ahead of Umpie Swart (Alpine Autohaus Polo 6R) and Christopher Swart (Village Paint & Hardware Jetta 2).

Jarred Simpson did an incredible job to qualify fifth in his Class C Greenz Plumbing/Cape Refractory Golf 1 GTi ahead of Eden Thompson on his maiden outing in his new Class B Jetta, with Giordano Lupini (Class C CiR Construction/ La Vie de Luc/ Accelerate Special Gasoline Golf 1 GTi) seventh ahead of the returning Ashley van Niekerk’s Class B Ashrome Group/ Wheelworx Polo, Alfie van Zyl’s Class C CD Motorsport/GT Graphics Golf 1 GTi and Emile Assure (Class B Burly Pro Suspension/Krisp Vehicle Cooling Polo 6R).

The track was still slick for the start of race 1 as du Toit led away from Umpie Swart, Meder and Chris Swart, with a mad wrought going down just behind between the Class B and C frontrunners headed by van Niekerk, with Simpson holding Lupini and van Zyl off as Thompson made his way past the Class C cars. Thompson managed to vault to the front of that spat, with the Class C brat pack now including Kyle Wiltshire bottled up behind van Niekerk. 

Lupini managed to find his way past Simpson in a dramatic move that also saw former motocrosser Wiltshire and van Zyl through, but contact between them allowed the returning Dillon Joubert (Powder Coaring World/TAC Steel Golf 1 GTi) through to third in Class C behind Simpson.

No sooner had all this drama settled down, than the action up front became fraught as Umpie Swart passed du Toit for the lead to be followed through by Meder and then Christopher Swart too, but Umpie Swart was in trouble on the final tour, slowing and stopping to allow Meder through for the win from Chris Swart and du Toit. Behind them, Mark Fontini had driven his Medine Manufacturing FAT Racing Polo Classic from the back to fourth overall ahead of Class B winner Thompson and Class C top four Lupini, Simpson, Joubert and van Zyl and second B man Assure. 

Behind them, Class B runners Zaki Hendricks (Wheelworx Polo Classic) and Gideon Serfontein (Goeie Hoop Onderdele Golf 2 GTi), Wiltshire, Wayne Field (Class B Coetzee’s Coachworks Jetta 2), Glass B Golf GTi duo Daniel Munna and the returning Patrick Walton and Marc Thompson (Class B Polo Classic) diced hard, but Jason Coetzee (Class C Coetzee’s Coachworks Golf 1 GTi) joined Umpie Swart in retirement following an altercation with Serfontein. There was drama after the race as van Niekerk was excluded from fifth and Class C driver Ian Kapp also lost his position due to technical infringements.

The short six-lap race 2 shortened to accommodate a late program, started dramatically when the front row of the grid was eliminated after pole man Umpie Swart did not start and race 1 winner Meder was pushed away from his second starting slot. Christopher Swart, Nian du Toit and Mark Fontini diced initially only for du Toit to open the lead ahead of Fontini and Swart, but du Toit hit trouble on the final tour to allow his rivals by as Fontini took the win from Swart and du Toit.

A strong start saw Gideon Serfontein up to fourth and the Class B lead, only for his overheating Golf to stop and allow Eden Thompson through to an untroubled double Class B win, shadowed all the way by double Class C winner Giordano Lupini. Class B duo Zaki Hendricks and Emile Assure were next up ahead of Class C two Alfie van Zyl and Dillon Joubert. Ashley van Niekerk came from the back to beat Class B rival Wayne Field to tenth ahead of the similarly recovering Class B lad Jason Coetzee, Patrick Walton, Daniel Munna, Marc Thompson and Ian Kapp.

So Christopher Swart took the day from Nian du Toit and Mark Fontini, with Class B and C winners Eden Thompson and Giordano Lupini next up ahead of class rivals Dillon Joubert and Alfie van Zyl as Class B trio Zaki Hendricks, Emile Assure and Wayne Field closed off the top ten overall ahead of Daniel Munna, Patrick Walton and Marc Thompson.

All that saw 18-year old Giordano Lupini opening up his overall and class championship leads as Class B leader Eden Thomson moved ahead of Class A frontrunner Nian du Toit to second in the overall title race. The next round of the spectacular Burly Pro GTi Challenge is another midwinter Cape racing date on Saturday 6 July. Make a plan to catch that action — it really is worth the effort!


Issued on behalf of WP GTi Challenge

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