A new race formula was born in front of a huge audience.
That was the main story at the Zwartkops Raceway near Pretoria yesterday, when round nine of the 2016 Extreme Festival racing series attracted a large crowd.
The occasion incorporated the inaugural race meeting for Sasol Global Touring Cars, with six of the all-new rear-wheel-drive, two-litre turbo cars starting – and finishing – their first 14-lap race.
Michael Stephen (Engen Extreme Audi A3) led the opening heat from start to finish, followed by Mathew Hodges (VW Motorsport Jetta), Gennaro Bonafede (Sasol BMW GTC), Graeme Nathan (VW Motorsport Jetta), Hennie Groenewald (Sasol BMW GTC) and Simon Moss (Engen Extreme Audi A3).
The Production Class victory went to Shaun Duminy (SMD Group Ford Focus RS) from Daniel Rowe (Volkswagen Golf GTi) and Mandla Mdakane (Volkswagen Golf GTi).
Class X was won by Paul Hill (Kalex BMW) from Mark du Toit (Trans Africa Z4 BMW) and Ryan Quan-Chai (Leesons BMW Z4).
Gremlins struck in race two, with Groenewald failing to start due to a huge misfire, while Mathew Hodges and Simon Moss both slowed with electronic maladies.
That left Stephen to win again, this time followed by Nathan, Bonafede, Hodges and Moss.
Rowe took the Production Car class from Hill and Duminy.
Class X was won by Du Toit, from Hilton van Nieuwenhuizen (ASAP Citroen C2) and Melanie Spurr (G&H BMW 1-Series).
- The first Engen VW Cup race went to Bradley Liebenberg (Ferodo Polo), leading home Trevor Bland (Universal Health Polo) and Keagan Masters (Champion Polo). Bland won the second time, followed by Liebenberg and Shaun la Reservee (Alpine Motors Polo).
- Dewald Brummer (MAD Mygale) won both the Investchem Formula Ford races from Julian van der Watt (Mygale), with Andrew Horne (Investchem Mygale) and Alex Cillespie (ERP Trucking Mygale) taking turns on the final podium step.
- The opening Hankook Formula Vee race went to Jaco Schriks (FVee), ahead of Symm Grobler (FVee), Peter Hills (Lube Fusion Rhema) and Anthony Taylor (Vacuform Rhema), with the four cars covered by less than half-a-second over the finish line. Grobler won race two, in front of Hills, Schriks and Taylor.
- Sven Grune (Page Property ZX10R) won the initial Red Square Kawasaki Masters race from Johan le Roux (Avidan ZX10R) and Graeme van Breda (IVID ZX10R).
- Gerald van Heerden (AST Africa ZX10R) won the next race, followed by Kyle Robinson (Fantech ZX10R) and Grune.
- The day’s quickest lap time belonged to the Dunlop Thunderbike brigade, at 62.1 seconds for Daryn Upton (Turn-Skill Yamaha R1). Dean Vos (Trojan Kawasaki ZX10R) won their first race from Upton and Brandon Goode (Linex Yamaha R1). Upton reversed the result the next time out, with Gareth Davidson (Linex Yamaha R1) third.
- Jeffrey Kruger (Steamsure VW Polo) took the opening AutObarn Super Hatch race from Morne Human (Ancro Building Mini Cooper) and Hilton van Nieuwenhuizen (AutObarn C2). Kruger’s car blew an engine the second time around, which left Human to win ahead of Greg Garland (AutOBarn Civic) and Van Nieuwenhuizen.
- George Bezuidenhout (Accolade Nissan Primera) won the 111 Sport and Saloon Car race from Roan Ehlers (FEC Golf) and Jannie van Rooyen (VW Scirocco).
- Werner Strohm (Kawasaki ZX10R) and Joe Herbig (Guptas MV Agusta) took turns to win the two Silverton Bolt and Nut Challenge races, respectively.
The next round of the 2016 Extreme Festival tour will be at Zwartkops Raceway on Saturday, September 3.