Thrilling Season Finalé

Killarney International Raceway presented the final round of the regional Wingfield Motors Power Series in an eighteen race format featuring the RST Suzuki Superbikes with two 10 lap heats. Though the overall championship was already done and dusted the quality of racing amongst the Superbikes have simply been phenomenal in 2018 and to finish the season as the top dogs in the entertainment stakes was well deserved indeed.

In all fairness most of the local categories deserve compliments for their respective seasons as they certainly gave it everything despite the ever pinching economic climate resulting in the numbers declining on the grid. Then one has to compliment the Classic Car fraternity in showing some leniency in their very strict rules to accommodate the “almost’ genuinely classic cars.

Formula Libre too have seen their entry stabilise in the Formula Vee direction which makes it both affordable and more reliable. Who knows, a twenty car grid could well be possible in 2019!

Pirelli Sports & GT Cars  2x8 Laps

Clinton Thorne and Steve Humble drive the pocket rockets amongst the exotic names and their overgrown karts are certainly worth watching. In fact it may be more nerve wracking watching them race than what they experience as drivers. Not the greatest season for the Pirelli Sports & GT category, but then lady luck did not smile on André Bezuidenhout, Johan Engelbrecht, Craig Jarvis and Louis de Jager this season.

Clinton Thorne once again drove his Toyota powered Fulloutput Birkin 7 at a pace that some would consider unsafe to win overall from the AID Call 247 Nissan Shelby Can Am of Mike Verrier and the Advanced Packaging technology Porsche GT3 RS of Gary Kieswetter. The 2018 Pirelli Sports & GT Champion, Steve Humble, cruising to a very modest fourth position overall in the rare Harp Motorsport , chain driven, Hyabusa 1300 powered HRC Firecat. A faulty crank sensor limited the performance of this aerodynamic quad but it should be receiving a new coat of paint and additional tlc before heading for the final round at Port Elizabeth on 17 November 2018. Should the new gearbox arrive in time he might just be back in the Mallock Mk14 for PE. Great to see Louis de Jager back in sixth with the rebuilt Toyota powered Lola T212 replica.

Yes, for many reasons the numbers were down for 2018 and the series lost some of it’s big hitters, but quite a few new plans are being hatched for 2019. At the moment Steve Humble leads the points standings with Clinton Thorne the irritating “thorn” in a very close second spot. Expect to see the mighty Aquila 7.0 V8 back in turbocharged format and there is a second Ginetta G57 in South Africa!

Shatterfix Fine Cars & Classic Cars 2x9 Laps

Since this was the Classic Cars a Grandfather’s tale would be acceptable? This “Oupa” just happened to be the driver of the most successful racing car in South African saloon car history, which does make it difficult to understand how he started his sporting career as a Springbuck angler. Nou daar is vir jou ‘n visserman storie!

Hennie van der Linde needs no introduction as a legend in South African motorsport and the number 16 GTX was a permanent irritation to the class A brigade. “Call me” Arnold Chatz held the previous record for class B victories in his Alfa Romeo GTV 2.0 but there was no stopping the Nissan Skyline 2.8GTX. 

With both Hennie van der Linde and the No 16 Nissan Skyline GTX disappearing from the limelight it was the international achievements of “oupa se kinders” Sheldon and Kelvin van der Linde that led to a new wardrobe of bigger shirts as their Audi R8 results continued to impress.

Then the ex-van der Linde Nissan Skyline appeared in the For Sale columns, those where you cannot afford it if you have to ask the price, and it actually changed hands quite recently with the good news that it was not going to a parked investment where nobody could appreciate it. It fact it made an appearance at Dezzi Raceway  with the Ford & Friends meeting. Ironically a circuit where this car was never driven in anger.

Jan Willem de la Porte liked the sound of that screaming six cylinder so much he just had to have another fix and Deon Joubert was delegated to present the legend at Killarney! An early Christmas present for local enthusiasts as it has been some time since Dave Hawkins had flung his Skyline around the circuit and sadly these iconic cars simply vanished off the scene.

The many years of being parked in a garage unfortunately resulted in the car not being quite race ready and when the bonnet flew open into KFM / Hoals wisdom saw it being parked rather than risk damaging a true classic. Hopefully, once properly sorted, it will return to sing to an appreciative audience during the February classic meeting.

Franco Donadio and his magical Donadio Plant Hire Ford Escort BDA 2.3 undoubtedly the car to catch as this car is really driven to entertain – and win!  Robin Forbes second overall for the day in his thundering Chevrolet Corvette Stingray 5.7 V8 followed by the always impressive All Scale Ford Capri 3.4 V6 of Trevor Momberg. Erik Mouton and the “Battlestar Gallactica” Mouton’s Motors Chevrolet De Ville 6.3 V8 also starting to combine pace and reliability to finish in an impressive fourth overall with the Lynx Motorsport Porsche 944 Eric van der Merwe fifth and the somewhat outgunned Synpli Consult VW Scirocco of Paul Dalton sixth overall.

Dave Alhadeff won class B in his neatly turned out Intellibus Alfa Romeo GTA replica, but more importantly bagged the overall 2018 Classic Car Championship after a season of consistency. Keith Schenck survived to finish second in class with his Schenck Motorsport VW Jetta 1 and outgoing champion, Wayne Lötter, suffered mechanical maladies in his Globe Lötter Tours Ford Escort MkI.

Piet Matthee dominated class C in his Polizei Porsche 844 with Dr Geoff Bihl second in his similar Porsche 944 and the impeccably prepared Garage 86 Toyota Conquest RSi of Deon Conradie third. Piet Matthee the Pre 90 Classic Champion for 2018. Benjack Phillips really attracted attention in his fourth placed Fiat 131 Abarth replica whilst Herman de Kock claimed fifth in class with his Ford Escort MkI and in sixth spot it was Phillipe du Toit in his Ford Sapphire 3.0.

Ernest Leite had the little Fiat 128 Rallye 1.3 screaming to a class D class win with Tony Lindeque a more sedate second in his VW Jetta MkI whilst Glen Loxton proved impressive in his ex-Keith Andrews Alfa Romeo GTA replica. In fact, it was great to see the ex-Keith Andrews championship winning Alfetta GTV 2.0 present in the hands of Dirk Nolte but the car did not reach the chequered flag on the day as it broke its driveshaft .

RST Trac Mac Classic, Clubmans & Breakfast Run Motorcycles  2x8 Laps

Jos Troch, Joske Kotzé, Chris Williams and Bronte Heinrich really kept the spectators entertained with Jos Troch taking overall victory aboard his class A Honda CBR 1000 with Joske Kotzé virtually alongside aboard his class A Kawasaki ZX6R. The first heat separation 0.122sec and the second 0.002sec. The dice of the day! Bronte Heinrich third aboard his class A Ducati 996SPS. Chris Williams unfortunately running into problems in the second heat.

Wayne Arendse won class B aboard his Honda CBR600RR with Grant Livingstone second, Ducati 999, and Giovanni Massa third, Honda CBR600RR. The Breakfast Run category won Shaun Mackrill, Kawasaki ZX10R, from Natier Taliep, Suzuki GSXR750, and Nasief Smart, Yamaha YZR R1. With quite an impressive entry in the Breakfast Run class it is anticipated that the series will see numbers increase for 2019.

RST Suzuki South Superbikes 2x10 Laps

Simply brilliant and at the top of the table it was another brotherly affair as Brandon and Brendon Haupt proved to be the class of the field aboard their Yamaha R1 motorcycles. Unfortunately Trevor “Killer” Westman acquired a section of Rose Memorial real estate when he was high sided from his Mad Macs Kawasaki ZX10R during Thursday practice and he opted to run in the 600cc category.

Cannot help but admire the clever marketing by Suzuki South as this manufacturer did not feature in any results this year, yet the quality of the Suzuki South Superbike category have certainly resulted in this being the best formula in regional motorsport as there were some fantastic racing in each and every class!

Brandon Haupt finished his season in fine style by winning both heats aboard his 2018 championship winning Fueled Racing / TFC Invest Yamaha R1. Bernard Haupt his spectacular self on the second Fueled Racing / TFC Invest Yamaha R1 but he outbraked himself into Fastron corner during heat one whilst Gerrit Visser did likewise in heat two aboard his Samurai Racing Yamaha R1. Gerrit managing to recover and still finish second overall with Jean-Baptiste Racoupeau their aboard his Gaming Guru Kawasaki ZX10R.

Malcolm Rapson took overall honours in the Super Masters category aboard his Kawasaki ZX10R with a determined Quintin Ebden second aboard his Milu Yamaha R1 and Robb Cragg third aboard his Madmacs Kawasaki ZX10R. Good enough to see Robb Cragg take the Super Masters championship for 2018.

JP Freidrich won the 600cc category aboard his FR Tax / National Security / Mad Macs Kawasaki ZX6R from a determined Gareth Gehlig aboard his similar Formula Autos / RPM Center Kawasaki ZX6R and Trevor Westman third.

Mike’s Place Clubmans Cars 2x8 Laps

Mansoor Parker pulled off a rather unique overall first in his Armien Levy Motorsport class B BMW E30 328 with Eugene Kruger second in his class B Industrial Garden Contractor VW Golf MkI and Armien Levy third overall in his class C Jive / Armien Levy Motorsport BMW E36 M3. Gavin Cerff the first class A entry home in fourth place with his 4x4 VW Jetta Turbo.

Under braking for Fastron on the opening lap of heat one Michael le Sueur and Danie van Niekerk bounced off one another to leave the Wingfield Motors E36 BMW in the kitty litter and the New Engineering VW Golf a little further down the main straight. Basie Burger and Clint Rennard then thought they could do the bounce even better and both the Italoven and G&A Promotions VW Golf entries disappeared. Shane du Toit popped the motor on his Skilpadvlei entry in PE the week before and Jess Huggett did not make it past practice with an oil leak onto the clutch.

Wayne Wilson eventually finishing third in class B with his ex-factory DTM Helderberg Nissan Maxima with Mike Venlet fourth in his very quick MRD VW Golf MkI. Paul Munnik added to the entertainment aspect when the left front wheel parted company with his Audi &VW Auto Clinic VW Golf GTi.

George Neethling maintained his good form by finishing fifth overall in his class C M/Saich/Italoven VW Golf MkI whilst Anthony Carstens impressed with sixth overall in his Maxicool class D VW Golf MkI. John du Toit seventh in his class C VW Golf MkI and in eighth it was Willem Swart in his WFS Motors class D VW Golf GTi. Anwar Levy ninth in his Armien Levy class C E30 BMW 325and the top ten completed by Damien Lopez in his class D Cape Refractory & Servico VW Polo Classic.

Bruce Meyer winning class E and finishing an impressive 12th overall in his Cape Industrial Flooring VW Polo whilst Gilbert Nobrega won class F in his neat Safari Flooring Ford Ikon 1.6. Phillip Booysen most impressive in class X with his Belfreeze Ford.

Makita Supercars and V8 Masters 2x8 Laps

Jaco Lambert took a well deserved overall win in the Makita Supercars, but it was second placed Ryan McCarthy that became the 2018 Makita Supercars Champion for Hyper Lighting. Andrew Moffitt finishing third on the day with Jarryd Evans fourth for Cape Eye Laser. Martin Bensch fifth overall and first Silver class for Compact Robotics with the top six completed by Glen Phillips.

Great to see the numbers swelling again and with many having experienced problems during the year one can only anticipate a much more competitive season in 2019.

The V8 Masters champion will only be determined in Port Elizabeth on 17 November 2018 but it was Sean Moore that stole victory on the day with Fabio Tafani second and Marcel Angel third. Richard Schreuder home in fourth spot despite having started on pole with Brian Evans fifth and silver class winner, Rob Warrington, in sixth spot.   

Burly Pro GTi Challenge 2x8 Laps

Jurie Swart took overall first with a little help from his opposition as they self destructed in their efforts to catch the Alpine Autohaus VW Polo Classic. Colin Nicholas Meder hanging on to finish second overall in his International Tube Technology VW Polo R6.

The second heat however was extremely close and Francois van Tonder just pipped Jurie Swart and Colin Nicholas Meder on the line. Less than 0.4 sec covering all three cars.

Eden Thompson won class B, finished third overall, and took the overall crown as the Burly Pro GTi Challenge Champion 2018 in his VW Golf MkI. Gideon Serfontein fourth overall in his class B Goeie Hoop Onderdele VW Golf MkII and class C winner, Dario Busi, sixth overall in his Automan VW Golf MkI.

Divan Lazarus provided the surprise element when his Cheaper Cars VW Jetta MkII rid itself of it’s left rear wheel in Fastron corner, but continued for quite some distance before realising that something was amiss.

RST Trac Mac Powersport Motorcycles 2x8 Laps

The top three in this category was brilliant as they continuously swopped positions and Chris Williams really had to dig deep to stay ahead on his Trac Mac Kawasaki ER650. Mike van Rensburg and Paul Medell second and third respectively on similar machines. These two heats another highlight of the day.

Recently crowned SA champion, Kewyn Snyman, as always running amazing times aboard his The Mag Workshop KTM RC390 to finish a mighty fourth overall. Jessen Samaai, Samurai Racing KTM RC390, and Wesley Jones, Savage Six Yamaha R3, fifth and sixth overall respectively.

Formula Libre 2x6 Laps

Dee-Jay Booysen returned after having broken his finger to finish first overall in the neat Dico Formula RM08 with a determined Joshua Dolinschek second in his Makita Power Tools Formula Mygale SJ 1600 and Sean le Riche third in the historic Seleka Racing Formula Renault.

Fourth overall and first in class C made Byron Mitchell the 2018 Formula Libre Champion in his Dolphin Engineering Formula VW Forza 1.4i. Cyril Somerville fifth in his Dolphin Engineering Formula Vee Sting and in sixth spot it was Isabelle Fowler in her Formula Vee Lantis.

A series that is starting to find some stability and increased numbers and reliability will hopefully see their positive growth continue in 2019.

Summary

The first chairman of the Western Province Motor Club in 1964, SAGMJ Motorsport Journalist of the Year 1989, SAGMJ Colin Watlings award winner 2010 and MSA Lifetime award winner 2013, Adrian Pheiffer retires from his current position as PRO for the WPMC at the end of October 2018.