Summarize

WhatRotax Max Challenge South African Round 3 & African Open Report
WhereiDube Kart Raceway, Camperdown, KZN
When16-17 July 2022
CommunitySouth Africa National

Surprise national winners Saturday, African Open on Sunday

The tight, twisty and undulating iDube Kart Track near Pietrmarizburg lived up to its epic reputation as it delivered surprise national winners at Saturday’s third round South African Rotax Max Challenge Karting Championships. And then on Sunday, five of SA’s finest kart racers booked their places on the National green and gold team for October’s 'Olympics of Karting’ Rotax Max Grand Finals in Portugal with victory in Sunday’s wildcard Rotax Max African Open.

Bradley Liebenberg made a triumphant return to premier DD2 with a first heat win over championship leader Sebastian Boyd, another comeback king Cristiano Morgado, Joseph Oelz, Niko Zafiris and Brandon Smith, while Eugene Brittz beat Nicholas Verhuil, Jonathan Pieterse and Shane Foley. Boyd came back from fourth to take heat 2 from Oelz, Morgado, Nicolas Spanoyannis, Zafiris and Brandon Smith after Liebenberg and Jamie Smith plummeted down the order mid race. 

Verhuil took the second Masters win from Brittz and Foley after Pieterse came in underweight. Liebenberg wasted little time to move ahead of Oelz, Morgado, Jamie Smith, Boyd and Niko Zafiris to win the final, while Brittz took the Masters overall win after beating Verhuil, Pieterse and Foley. Bradley Liebenberg then delivered a masterful drive to take Sunday’s DD2 African open to do the double from Oelz, Morgado and Boyd, to book his Grand Final berth alongside local Masters hero Jonathan Pieterse.

Neither the Senior Max top two won a heat as local lad Yifan Li pipped championship leader Tate Bishop to take a popular overall win for the day. Polo Cup racers Bishop and Charl Visser, and Formula 1600 racer Shrien Naidoo fought a tight 3 way battle before he held Bishop and Visser off to take race 1 with a similar result in heat 2. Bishop then took the final only to incur a 10 place driver Misconduct penalty after Naidoo dropped back early on.

Visser then plummeted down the order on the final tour to leave Olerato Sekuduto to take the heat win from Li and Karabo Malemela as Li took the day from Bishop, Sekudu, Malemela, Naidoo, Ethan Stier and Visser. Moving on to Sunday, local lad Shrien Naidoo bounced back to earn his slot in the 2022 South African Rotax Max Grand Finals team. He beat Bishop and Malema to African Open honours.

KC Ensor-Smith took an easy high school Junior Max heat 1 win from Wian Boshoff and Nicolaos Vostanis, before Sa'aad Variawa beat Smith, Vostanis and Jayden Goosen to a superb heat 2 victory. Ensor-Smith took the final from Vostanis, Khan and Heystek to beat Vostanis, Boshoff, Variawa, Heystek and Dhyvien Naidoo overall. Nicolaos Vostanis’ weekend got even better when he beat Boshoff and Heystek to claim his seat in the SA Grand Finals team with in Sunday's African Open

Caleb Odendaal beat local hero Travis Mingay and Kent Swartz to the opening under-13 Mini Max race win. Odendaal then made a final lap overtake to win the second race from Mingay too. Odendaal then picked off the three karts do the triple for the day’s win from Mingay, Kegan Martin, Adaam Kajee, Keagan Beaumont and Kyle Spies. Odendaal closed off a perfect weekend with African Open honours over kent Swarts and Jordon Wadeley to earn his SA Team Grand Finals seat 

Rafael da Silva beat Taylin Patel to the opening under 11 Micro Max win with Aiden Beaumont in chase. Rafael de Sousa fought back to fourth from Santiago Frade, Cristian Verheul and Emma Dowling. Da Silva beat Dowling, Beaumont, Patel, de Sousa, Matthew Shuttleworth and Verheul in race 2 before fighting Patel, Dowling, Verheul, Beaumont and Shuttleworth off to do the triple. Rafael da Silva then went on to beat Patel and Dowling in Sunday’s African Open.

Noah Cronje had to fight a hard battle throughout the day to take baby Bambino honurs over a combative Brodi Cooper Dowling. Diego Antunes came home third from Luhan de Wet, Adriaan Steyn and Ronaldo Koen. Brodi Dowling then made good with victory in the Bambino African Masters from Antunes and Koen to win himself an official green and gold South African team colours race suit.

So, Bradley Liebenberg, Jonathan Pieterse, Shrien Naidoo, Nico Vostanis and Caleb Odendaal have all booked their tickets to the 2022 Rotax Max ‘Olympics of Karting’ Grand Finals. The rest of the seats are still up for grabs as reward to the various South African Rotax Max champions, all of whom will be crowned at Zwartkops International Kart Raceway’s SA Finals on Saturday 3 September.

ENDS

Issued on behalf of Rotax Max Challenge

For further information please contact jennifer@kart.co.za

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