By: Colin Windell
Port Shepstone - When some new names step up to the podium it bodes well for the state of sport and that was the case at Dezzi Raceway, Oslo Beach at the weekend.
The 300 Motorcycle class grabbed the headlines, not only because it resulted in the first overall win for Jaundre de Beer (3D Printing Yamaha R3) but, because Drew Gates (Kawasaki 400) elected to start both heats from the back of the grid.
The young rider has his sights set on racing overseas next year to follow a long line of KZN riders that have names for themselves on two wheels in international competition such as Kork Ballington, Alan North, Jon Ekerold and, most recently, his chief rival in the series, Blaze Baker.
“I need to fine-tune my race craft,” says the youngster. “Starting from the back means I have to find my through the field.”
And, he did. In the first heat he needed three laps to work his way up to second place and was set to challenge eventual race winner Shaun Joffe (Jade Joffe Honda Moto 3) when an electrical problem cut the power on the Kawasaki and he was forced to retire.
In the second race it took just three-quarters of a lap for him to hit the front and to stay there, winning from Kyle Robertson (Bolt & Nut Centre Yamaha R3), Zane Davidson (Husqvarna 85) and Felix Kroeber (Kawasaki 400).
The 300 Class is sub-divided into 300, 300 Masters and Powersport so, even though De Beer finished only eighth in this encounter, the accumulated points for the day saw him take the overall honours from Gates and Tai Robinson (KTM Super Prod 85).
The 300 Masters honours went to Robertson ahead of Stephen Puren (Kawasaki 300) and Florian Kroeber (Yamaha R3), while the Powersports was won overall by Sandile Mthembu (Honda VFR400) from Sven Christensen (Paarl Brewery Honda CBR150) and Joffe.
However, it was not all plain sailing for Gates and he was also entered in the Super Motard category aboard a Husqvarna 450. In the opening race he tweaked the throttle a little too early on the exit of Turn 1 and the bike spat him off in a spectacular ‘high-side’ that left him winded and motionless on the track.
Fortunately, all the following riders were able to take avoiding action and the race was red flagged to allow the Medics to get to him. He suffered no serious injuries and was cleared to continue racing.
In this class Shaun Joffe ruled the roost on the day taking overall honours from Cameron van der Nest (Husqvarna 450) and Brent Goulding (Husqvarna 450).
On four wheels, Hank Lombard (PSA VW Scirocco) claimed overall honours after two heats of close racing with the Mtrac VW Golf of Elton Fuchs with Dane Thompson in the Panel & Paint VW Golf third for the day.
In Class A of the Modifieds Keegan Sansom (R&M Plant Hire VW Golf) won overall from Ronal van Rensburg (Hendok Goldwagen VW Golf) and Gary Commins (Mobile Auto Repairs VW Golf).
Class B honours went the way of Gary Brown (Impro Mobile Ford Escort) with Shaun Erasmus (VW Golf) second ahead of Richard Loynes (VW Golf).
Class C was won by Jannie Petzer (Reztep Engineering VW Polo Vivo) from newcomers Rivelle Rooiplall (VW Golf) and Bilaal Darwood (VW Golf).
With several of Tony Martin’s Backdraft Roadsters in play in the Super GT category along with a couple of privately run versions, plus the appearance of Kingsley Woods’ Power King VW Golf in the hands of Rob Prece and the Ultima 3860 of Stuart Kidgell, there was more than enough horsepower to delight the crowd.
Mike McLoughlin, driving the brutal Slingshot V8 Roadster won overall on the day from Prece in the Power King Golf with Jonathan Pieterse (Nissan 350Z) in third place. In the Super GT Class B, Peter Blofield (Backdraft Roadster) won from Leo Branders (Roadster 4000) and Gary Commins (Mobile Auto Repairs VW Golf).
The Super GT cars shared the stage with both the Sports Cars and M Projects Historics with Jonathan Edwards (Formula M 600) winning the category from Barry Glanz (Formula M 1300) and Mark Futcher (Indaba Training Birkin 7).
The field of Historic cars was a bit thinner than usual with a couple of cars under rebuild and several competitors preparing for a race in Mozambique.
In Class E Cecil Manson-Bishop (Ford Anglia) won from Darryl Mann (Aero Natal Datsun 1800), while Class F went to Vaughan Robinson (Ford Escort) from Gareth Ferreira (Tradepak Alfa GTV) and Craig Hamilton (Dalton Tractor Mercedes-Benz 280) with Arthur Eggar (Renault R8) the lone runner in Class G.
As usual the 150-motorcycle class was a hard-fought affair with Zane Davidson (Husqvarna 85) taking the top step of the podium overall for the day from Murray Smith (KTM 85) and Tai Robinson (KTM 85). In Class A it was Cayden Potgieter (RMC Auto Repairs Honda CBR150) from Sven Christensen (Paarl Brewery Honda CBR150) and Felix Kroeber (Honda CBR150).
Class B went the way of Florian Kroeber (Honda CBR150) from Riley Day (Honda CBR150) and Quinn St John Ward (Honda CBR150).
Zahid Hassim, driving the Mayfair Gearbox Hyundai i30N won the Time Attack – an event in which the competitors do not race each other but, rather race the clock against their own best lap times. Gayle Erasmus (VW Golf) was second with Hammad Razza Wahab (2006 3000) third overall.