Round 7, Cape’s Gti’s go to Heaven
Not only is Wednesday 09 August a day to which we honour the fairer gender, but another enthralling installment of the wildly popular Bold Marine Gti Challenge racing series is set to stun the masses which plan to make their way to the Killarney International Raceway for the 7th round of the Wingfield Motors Power Series for a day of spectacular main circuit racing.
This round has yet another interesting twist as there will be no official qualifying session for the drivers due to the jam packed race programme. Grid positions in each class for the 1st heat will be determined by the fastest lap times of the previous round which could see some interesting start line action unfold as the lights go out.
In Class A, the man to watch out for will be the lightening quick Jurie Swart Jnr (Alpine Autohaus Polo Classic). The ex Engen VW Cup campaigner once again bagged a double victory after the youngster had a rather incident prone start to his day. Unable to make it to the pre race paddock for qualifying after a slight coming together with a concrete base in scrutineering. The team worked franticly to get the car back to running condition and Swart Jnr declared fit to compete.
Pole position went to the always flying Shane du Toit (KSD/Skilpadvlei Wine Farm Jetta II). The ace was unfazed by the slippery conditions as he blitzed his way to the top spot seeking that all elusive taste of victory. P2 went to series sponsor Arthur C Roberts “The Russian” (Roberts Racing Jetta II) who battled with traction and was unable to push the limits of his vehicle. With only 3 entrants in class, Swart Jnr was relegated to back of class for the 1st heat after being unable to post a time due to the earlier misfortune.
Looking for a repeat performance, Swart Jnr will be doing whatever it takes to claim back to back victories but will definitively not have it easy as The Russian has restored his vehicle back to full attack mode as the series sponsor sets his sights on taking away the victory from the ex Engen VW Campaigner.
However the 2 protagonists will not have it easy as another returning fast flyer in the form of Chris Roberts (Son to Arthur) in the 2nd Roberts Racing Jetta II makes his return to the series after a 1 and a half year sabbatical from main circuit racing. Roberts Jnr armed with a new and improved machine has been putting in some amazing flying laps around the circuit and will be ready to launch an assault on the rest of the class.
Another favourite returning after a 3 round absence is the always improving John Craig Jnr (John Craig Motorsport Polo Vivo). After taking a break from the main circuit scene, Craig Jnr will be ready to challenge the front runners for class honours.
In Class B it is none other than current class champion Eden Thompson (Somerset Refrigeration/MAD Performance Golf I GTi) and ex overall champion Jacques Geldenhuys (Ferroli/G&A Motorsport Golf II GTi) who will be at each other heels in a real head-to-head tussle for the top step. The 2 dogs of war are only separated by a mere 2 points in the overall standings and each driver will be looking to seek any advantage in a bid for supremacy.
Although the 2 front runners will not have it easy as another quick competitor in the form of Mario Roux ( Automar Jetta II) could wreak havoc in the title fight as Roux will be seeking class honours and could make matters difficult at the front of the field. Just a little further back is the Class B sensation Wayne Field (Coetzee’s Auto Coachworks Golf II GTi) as the 2016 rookie has shown some promising pace this season. Field’s performance has been met with superb reward as the latter is currently 8th overall in the championship standings after showing some amazing consistency throughout the season.
Rounding out the class is newcomer Grant Cloete (Upstream Connect Golf I GTi) who made his debut in the series last round and showed some promising pace. With conditions only set to improve, Cloete could soon find himself on par with the rest of the field in due course.
The war in Class C will once again be waged on the black stuff as overall championship leader Marco Busi (Automan Golf I GTi) will be looking to further extend his lead in the standings as the ex WP Karting champion has 1 finger on the trophy. It has been a season filled with many incidents as well as triumph and the current log leader knows that he cannot let his guard down for a single second as the rest of the class wolf pack will be all out to cut his advantage.
After last round Marco’s closest rival is now his younger sibling Dario Busi (Automan Polo Playa) as the young gun displayed some fantastic driving skills after managing to save a major moment in turn 4. The Busi boys showed pure domination in class as Marco bagged another double victory with young Dario taking a double P2 in both heats. If anything, last round just increased the heat for Marco as young Dario formed part of his list of rivals and the young talent shows the hunger for victory.
However the young rookie is only a single point ahead of current overall champion Bryan Morgan (Greatsoft Payroll Golf I GTi) who will be looking to put the previous round’s troubles behind him. It was yet another disastrous day for the champ as he was forced to retire from both heats with fuel pump issues. Eager to redeem himself, Morgan will be in full attack mode as he seeks to slash Marco’s advantage and claw back some precious championship points.
Another driver who could turn the title fight on its head is the fast charging Jarred Simpson in the 2nd Greatsoft Payroll Golf I GTi who has the pace to run with the front runners. Simpson was dealt a vital blow when his emergency kill switch malfunctioned while involved in a close dice with Marco for the lead. Simpson will undoubtedly be seeking some redemption as he will also be in contention for class honours.
One can also not rule out ex overall champion Christopher Swart (Jacks Paint & Hardware Edgemead Golf I GTi) who could easily make the fight for victory a 5 way affair. Another driver who showed some significant improvement was Dillion Joubert (TAC Steel/Powder Coating World Golf I GTi) the latter delivered a brilliant display of driving finesse to claim his first podium.
Getting closer and closer to the front runners is ex Supercar champion Brad Wadeley (Charl Electrical Engineering Golf I GTi) as the ex champ showed some sheer driving excellence and is beginning to get to grips with a Gti Challenge machine. Another up & coming flyer is rookie Ian Kapp (Hydracor Hydraulics Golf I GTi) who seems to find new pace with each outing.
Returning to action after missing last round is Gideon Serfontein (Goeiehoop Onderdele Golf I GTi) who also be looking to score some vital championship points. Another returning front runner is Jaco Lambert (BGA Auto/Paint Chemistry Golf I GTi) who also missed the previous round after having a nasty collision with the wall coming out of turn 5 in the 5th round. Lambert will be eager to get behind the wheel of his new machine and look to be in contention for a podium spot.
Rounding out the field will be Gert Du Plessis (Cheapercars Golf I GTi) and the series dazzling lady racer Nadia Nair (Golf I GTi).
With the championship still wide open the crowd will be in for another spectacular display of hardcore close racing from the cape most popular series.
Be sure to catch the 7th round unfold in a Power Series National Woman’s Day Spectacle with the 1st heat to commence at 13:00pm and the 2nd heat to kick off at 17:15pm.
The talking stops now, buckle up and hold onto your seats. This is Gti Challenge!
- Written By: Byron Wanza