|What||Gauteng Rotax Max Challenge Round 1 Preview|
|Where||Formula K Kart Track, Benoni|
|When||saturday 6 March 2021|
2021 Gauteng Rotax Max Challenge ready to race
The 2021 Gauteng Rotax Max Challenge karting championship enters an exciting new era as racing gets under way at the Formula K Raceway in Benoni on Saturday 6 March. If last weekend’s Zwartkops club meeting was anything to go by, a more chilled racing atmosphere under controlling body WOMZA is bound to be diametrically offset by red hot action on track.
The premier direct drive DD2 action saw three different drivers take race wins in that club race dress rehearsal. 2021 Gauteng champion Jamie Smith resumes combat with Nick Verheul, but with Wayland Wyman, Niko Zafiris and Divan Braak in winning form. With Nicolas Spanoyannis and Tinahe Ncube wanting to make a mark, the FK action should be extreme. Also look out for Toto Variava, Ethan Toth, Llewellyn Sutherland and Selim Kaymak.
Moving on to top chain drive open class Senior Max, Kian Grottis seems the man to beat based on his recent performances against Andrew Hill, Olerato Sekudu and Ryan Wustmann. In other open classes, the FKR Shifters are finally coming of age with a large contingent of the old guard ready to race including Rob Bakewell, Deon Auby, Jaco Nel, Ian Basson and Anton and Jurgen Pommersheim. And Robert Fulton, Michael Hawcroft, Kurt Schultz and Chad Francis, Kearn Francis will resume Clubmans combat.
Moving on to the school kid classes, South African champion Muhammad Wally should start as favourite in high school Junior Max. However, if their early season form is anything to go by, Wally may very well have his work cut out by Troy Snyman and Jayden Goosen, Moosa Kajee, Nicolaos Vostanis and Ricardo Tebbutt are also Juniors well worth keeping an eye out for.
East London kid Caleb Odendaal has been in scintillating form in the senior primary school age Mini Max as he toured the regions in preparation for the season ahead. But if Erich Heystek, Wian Boshof, Kutlwana Malumane, Georgia Lenaerts, Berlin Robinson and Kent Swartz have anything to do with it, Odendaal will have his work cut out for him to stay ahead at Benoni. Also in the fray are EW Hattingh, Luke Corbett and Tjaden Tromp.
Junior primary age Micro Max has seen rapid growth and is looking set for a most competitive season, where Reagile Spice Mailula has already placed his winning marker in the sand. He has a capable bunch to beat, with Kegan Martin, Taylin Patel and Aadam Kajee on his case. Bambino graduates Rafael da Silva, Mattao Mason, Cristian Verheul and Ruald Hartzenberg will join the chase too. Johan Nolte and Emma Rose Dowling have made a welcome step to join the fray from four stroke racing .
The baby Bambino class is the breeding ground of future racing stars and it is usually one of the most exciting kart classes to watch, too. Matthew Shuttleworth showed his hand with a dominant display at that club race, where he put one over Logan Billau, Shayaan Mohamed, Kayde Cornofsky and Rafael de Sousa. Bambino karters to watch are Santiago Frade and Maddox Mason. Andoni Pinto, Brodi Cooper Dowling, Riley Dalby and Diego Antunes will all compete in their first regional event.
One kid to watch for sure, is little Noah Cronje, who makes his regional karting debut this weekend. Why, you may ask? Well he is former Rotax Max world champion, multiple South African race and rally champion Mark Cronje's first born. So with dad, uncle Gavin who is also a Rotax Grand Final winner and grandpa and the old team in his corner, the latest racing Cronje should certainly be one to watch.
The Formula K Gauteng Rotax Max Challenge opener goes down behind closed doors without spectators in accordance with lockdown protocols.
Issued on behalf of Rotax Max Challenge
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