The rain cleared just in time for this past weekend’s 3rd Round of the Western Province Kart Championships.
An early morning green and slippery track quickly dried and morphed into a record breaking paradise.
There were a bunch of upsets.
There were stand out performances.
If you missed any of the action you don’t want to stop reading here.
Bambino (5th – 9th birthday)
Cape Town’s youngest karters turned up and delivered.
There was excitement, there was despair and there was a guest appearance from last year’s Champion Aiden Beaumont (Top Kart).
After qualifying, the most excited of the lot was young Liam Wharton having planted his #46 machine on pole position. Siyabonga Ntuli (Topkart) would line up for race one on his outside with current Championship leader Michael Danks (Topkart) rounding out the top 3.
Race 1 saw an epic duel amongst the top 3 as they battled for the win. Ntuli this time adopting the biggest smile as he came out on top, behind him Danks beating out Wharton.
Danks returned to form in the second race as he claimed his first of two wins on the day. Ntuli and Wharton followed in that order as all three crossed the finish line within 2 tenths of each other.
In the third and final race Ntuli and Wharton once again entertained those fortunate enough to be watching as they engaged in a titanic battle for P2. This allowed Danks to drive away in the distance for his second win and securing him overall honors on the day.
Ntuli’s efforts secured him P2 while pole man Wharton rounded out the podium. Lewis was best of the rest followed by first timer Boshoff and Beaumont, who didn’t take part in the final race.
Danks maintains his advantage in the standings, but he will be well aware of the threat posed by Ntuli and Wharton when they next take to the track.
Kid ROK (6th – 10th birthday)
The Kid ROK class delivered some truly entertaining action and some major upsets too.
Kai van Rensburg (RS Kart) ran into issues after he claimed pole position in qualifying and then found himself struggling for pace in race 1.
As a result of van Rensburg’s issues, a delighted Max Boshoff claimed victory in his first ever race. There are few other drivers who have achieved the same, and their surnames normally end in Vettel or Senna. Michael Danks took P2 followed by rookie Aaron Mason.
Danks then took the win in Race 2 followed by race 1 winner Boshoff and a resurgent van Rensburg who returned to form with the fastest lap.
The final race of the day saw a second win for Danks. This time being made to work very hard as van Rensburg applied constant pressure from behind. Mason rounded out the podium spots.
When all was said and done it was Danks who emerged victorious. Boshoff’s maiden race win secured him P2 for the day, with van Rensburg fighting back to take third overall.
ROTAX Micro MAX (7th – 12th birthday)
There was an intense excitement in the build up to Saturday’s Micro MAX battle, but no one could have predicted the upsets along the way.
The Parolin protagonists, Dale Hobbs and Keagan Beaumont, had some new company to deal with. Keagan’s brother, Aiden, positioned his BirelART between his sibling on pole and Hobbs in P3. An impressive Mathew Chiwara (CRG) rounded out the top 4 in qualifying.
Keagan drove to an impressive win in race 1 followed by Hobbs and Aiden before things got interesting in race 2 as the “Beaumont Bros” secured a one-two for the Strive Racing outfit with Hobbs coming home in P3. Keagan had his second win on the day, but his brother laid down the fastest lap. The scene was set for a juicy third and final race that’s for sure.
Juicy was what the onlookers got.
Keagan, having led for most of the race, had his younger ‘boet’ hot on his tail and smelling victory. Aiden made his move as he rounded Keagan’s outside through the fastest corner of the track as he went on to claim his maiden Micro MAX win and a new lap record of 45.647. Hobbs took P2 followed by Keagan.
Once the dust had settled, it was an overall one-two for the Beaumonts. Keagan’s win seeing him take the lead in the Championship while Aiden firmly joins the fight with his P2. Hobbs will be keen to bounce back after his efforts saw him to the final step of the podium. Chiwara can be very pleased with his fourth for the day and Mathew Roach, Liam Koekemoer and Siya Ntuli rounded off the overall standings.
Mini ROK (8th – 13th birthday)
With a no show from Championship protagonist Reese Koorzen, Ethan Lennon (FTW Tony Kart) drove on to three wins from three races.
It sounds easier than it was.
Qualifying was as expected with Lennon on top. Jude Stuart (Tony Kart) was right there on one lap pace in P2 followed by William Marshall (Kosmic).
The stand out performance on the day came from Stuart as he pressured Lennon right until the end in race 1 before driving from P5 to P2 in race 2 while Marshall took third in both races.
Race 3 was the showstopper on the day as Lennon, Stuart, Marshall and an impressive Ethan Deacon (Tony Kart) jostled for the race win.
With lead changes on almost every lap, it was Championship leader Lennon who crossed the line in first place. Stuart got P2 with Deacon making his first appearance in the podium spots taking P3.
Overall it was Lennon who emerged victorious as his impressive run of form continues. Stuart’s trio of second positions earned him a thoroughly well deserved second step on the podium with Marshall rounding out the prize spots.
Deacon came close but had to settle for P4 overall. He was followed by Sebastian Human, James Nash, Kai van Rensburg and Liam Crowe in the final standings on the day.
Mini MAX (9th – 14th birthday)
We all know how fast Joaquin de Oliveira (Parolin) is. He has dominated basically all timed sessions so far this season.
A quick glance over in the direction of the Smit garage at the end of Mini MAX qualifying told a different story however. There was elation as young Joshua Smit had slammed his S&S Racing RS Kart on pole position. Well done lad.
De Oliviera was only 2 hundredths of a second off Smit with another standout performance from Sabelo Ntuli (Tony Kart) securing him P3. Jordon Wadeley (EMR Kartsport CRG) was right there too.
Race 1 delivered the action we had anticipated after such a tight qualifying. While de Oliviera got the better of Smit off the start, Wadely and Ntuli enjoyed a truly epic and respectful race long battle. De Oliviera took the win with Smit in P2 and Wadeley P3. Sadly an exclusion for Ntuli after coming in slightly underweight on the scale.
De Oliviera then took the win in race 2 after he held off immense pressure from Smit (P2) and Wadeley (P3). Ntuli put in a great effort to drive from the back of the field to P4.
In race 3, de Oliviera made it three wins from three on the day thus giving him the overall win. There was a superb battle between pole sitter Smit, and Wadeley as the two fought hammer and tong for P2 on the road, Wadeley won that one out but had to settle for P3 overall as Smit’s two P2’s and a third secured him the second step of the podium.
Oliver Roach ended in P4 for the day with Ntuli in P5 followed by Jude Stuart who didn’t turn a lap in the final two races.
This Mini MAX class is really heating up. Yes, de Oliviera has been and still is the man to beat, but those in his wake are right there.
Will the rest of the season belong to de Oliviera or will there be a change in the pecking order as the rest of the season unfolds?
Junior MAX (12th – 16th birthday)
Everyone loves a standout performance in motorsport and Saturday’s Junior MAX qualifying provided exactly that.
Reza Levy (EMR CRG) was all set to continue his regional dominance before Mathew Wadeley (EMR CRG) went and put his kart on a fantastic pole position. Wadeley continues to make huge leaps in his short career and this display clearly shows he is going in the right direction. Levy was P2 and Joaquin de Oliveira (CRG) in third.
Wadely then went on to lead most of Race 1 as Levy hunted him down. With nothing to separate the two lap time wise, Levy made his move for the lead and Wadeley had to settle for P2 with young Joshua Smit in a fine P3.
Levy returned to fine form in the second race as he blitzed to victory adding a new lap record for good measure. Wadeley came home in P2 as he had no answer for Levy’s frantic pace this time around. Rookie Jaden Jacobs (Tony Kart) claimed a well deserved podium spot.
Levy’s day then went from good to even better in race 3 as he broke his lap record from the previous race setting the new Junior MAX bar at a blistering 41.094. Wadely, closer on the road compared to race 2, came home to complete a trio of seconds for the day as Smit saw his second appearance in the top 3
At the end of the day, the results made for good reading if your surname is Levy. After missing out in qualifying, Levy’s three wins saw him to the overall victory. Wadeley was up next with an ecstatic Jacobs rounding off the podium.
Smit was unfortunate to miss out on the prize places after his bodywork went missing in race 2. He ended the day in P4, followed by Oliver Roach and de Oliviera.
Senior MAX (14th birthday +)
The Senior MAX class, as promised, delivered once again!
Saturday turned out to be the perfect day for racing after the wet and wild weather we had during the build up to race weekend. The skies cleared and some very fast lap times would be seen on the day!
Tate Bishop was in a class of his own taking pole position and 3 heat wins. His success on the day has given him the Championship lead but don’t count out his rivals just yet.
Formula 1600 Championship leader Andrew Rackstraw showed blistering pace on the day finishing 2nd overall. Let’s hope Hamilton and Verstappen are willing to share their spotlight with this exciting Rackstraw and Bishop rivalry.
Driver of the day and a real stand out, Kyle Le Riche who made his Senior MAX debut drove masterfully. His mature driving allowed him to secure 3rd for the day. In a field of experience drivers, he was able to shine and father Sean can be very proud of his efforts.
Just missing out on the podium and all being within fractions of each other were GTC star Julian van der Watt, Storm Lanfear, Tristan de Nobrega and Andre Le Riche.
The racing was a testament to the experience in the field and not often do you get to see such close and hard fought battles. An absolute spectacle to watch and definitely a class to watch as the championship progresses.
Another thing to note was the lack of casualties in the races. Hard but fair racing.
On to the next one, who’s excited?
DD2 (15th birthday +) and DD2 Masters (32nd birthday + / 85kgs driver)
A 12 kart cracker was the order of the day and it definitely didn’t disappoint.
2020 DD2 National Champion Sebastian Boyd (Big Boss Freight BirelART) secured pole with a mouth watering laptime of a 40.237.
Cape Town speedster Jason Coeztee (Kosmic) showed his quality in a brilliant day of driving claiming two wins and a solid haul of points towards his SARMC campaign.
Hot off a trio of National wins, Joseph Oelz (BirelArt) continued his form with a race 1 victory after keeping Boyd at bay for the duration of the race. Coetzee, having fallen back in the opening exchanges, fought back hard to come home in third with a fastest lap for good measure.
It was all about Coetzee in race 2 as kept Boyd at bay to take the win. Boyd, himself, was in a terrific fight for P2 with Oelz. Boyd won out on that one with Oelz P3 at the end.
Coetzee claimed his second win of the day in race 3, but it certainly wasn’t an easy task as he, Oelz and Boyd all fought for the same piece of tarmac. This time, Oelz got the better of Boyd for P2.
These three drivers are at the top of their game and play in a league most aspire to be in. The driving was hard and fair (most of the time). Coetzee proudly took the overall win with Oelz in P2 and Boyd needing to come back hard at the next round.
A gaggle of DD2 Masters then followed on the overall DD2 results sheet as regular DD2 drivers Michael Jordan (Jordan Racing CRG), Rafe Tayler (CRG) and the ever improving Gil Simoes (Jordan Racing CRG) all had tough days in the saddle.
Talking about DD2 Masters, what a drive from the man in form right now Andrew Thomas (RDSA CRG). He beat his personal best lap time and set the standard with a 40.910 in qualifying followed by two race wins from three, very much mirroring Coetzee’s antics in DD2.
Rumour has it there is a petition going around to find out what they had for breakfast.
Reigning Champion Connor Hughes (Tony Kart) drove a mature race to second for the day. His perseverance paid off with a heat 3 victory. Jared Jordan (Jordan Racing CRG) was breathing down the necks of the top 2 and drove to a podium finish in his new machine.
Marco Viegas (CRG) showed great pace throughout the day to take fourth overall followed by the returning Ernst Viljoen (CRG) who couldn’t wipe the smile off his face and Steve Beaumont (CRG) who after some great pace in the morning had a DNF in the final race.
OKJ (12th – 16th birthday)
These young guns had one thing on their mind, battle it out for victory and nothing less.
Jason Macbeath (Tony Kart) came out guns blazing to take pole position by a mere three tenths in qualifying as he pipped Ethan Stier (Tony Kart) and 2020 Senior MAX Champion Tate Bishop (ANGRi)
Race 1 would see Bishop and Macbeath exchange numbers as a great fight for P1 ensued.
Bishop took the early lead only to lose it to Macbeath in the closing stages. The rose among the thorns, Mischa Williams (Tony Kart), drove to superb P3 and also claimed the fastest lap giving her pole for race 2.
Stier took top honours in Race 2 followed by Bishop and Williams. Macbeath claimed the fastest lap but after DQ would start the final race from the back.
The fight was well and truly on in Race 3. All 4 drivers finished within 4 seconds of each other as Bishop masterfully took the win, in turn calling checkmate for his fellow competitors.
WP Clubmans (14th birthday +)
The WP Clubmans returned with a bang over the weekend.
A healthy 6 kart field took the grid for an awesome day of fun low cost 2 stroke competition.
The first race belonged to Andre Le Riche (Seleka Racing Arrow) as he romped to victory. His father, Sean, the driving force behind this low cost, friendly environment for older beginners, came home in P2. He was followed by the ever present, passionate and pretty darn fit elder statesman Guy Lanfear.
With a P2 for Sean, he could consider himself more than just a driving force off the circuit.
Race 2 saw Andre bag his second win, his father in P2 again but this time, much closer to the pace of his youngster. It was a case of son beating father for P3 too as Guy Lanfear lost out to his son Storm.
Note: Both fathers are ok after their beating and will be looking to come back strong next time around
The final race saw the youngsters dominate as Storm took a great win after an exciting battle at the front end. Andre came home in P2 followed by his dad.
Overall it was a well deserved win for Andre Le Riche as two veterans rounded out the podium. Sean Le Riche in P2 and Guy Lanfear in P3. Two regular speedsters followed in Senior MAX front runner Storm and DD2 Masters driver Marco Viegas as Andre’s brother Kyle brought up the rear. Something he won’t be too bothered by after his Senior MAX heroics earlier in the day.
In all honesty, no one could have predicted a more entertaining raceday hosted by the WPMC Karting Section. Upsets aplenty and a few new names to keep in mind for the future.
Speaking of the future, it looks very bright for karting in the Cape. There are more race day entries so far this season than in the pre COVID days and that tells a wonderful story.
It’s never too late to begin your journey into motorsport, so come get involved.
You will never look back.
Here’s to looking forward to the next round on 12 June.
Hopefully see you there.
Issued on behalf of Western Province Motor Club (WPMC)