The Extreme Festival rolled into East London on Saturday and was given a warm reception by the hordes of spectators who flocked to the historic East London Grand Prix Circuit.
Competitors revel in the high speed challenge of the fast flowing circuit and the VW Polo cup is arguably the most competitive class in South Africa. A field of 19 competitors made the trip to the coastal circuit.
Unfortunately only 18 made it to the starting grid on Saturday morning after Kuda Vazhure rolled his Polo in spectacular fashion during practice on Friday in the Esses complex. He emerged from the wreckage unhurt, but the car was beyond repair in the timeframe of the weekend.
The new Polos built this year are far quicker than their predecessors as Keagan Masters proved with a pole position lap more than three seconds faster than the pole position lap last year. In the first race it was the master category driver Shaun la Reservee who held off the hard-charging young guns to take victory. Second went to Matt Shorter with Bradley Liebenberg in third. Championship leader Keagan Masters had to settle for fourth place.
In heat two the roles were reversed and it was Liebenberg who came away with the victory ahead of La Reservee, who was once again the first Master category driver. Tasmin Pepper put in a storming drive to take third place.
The Formula 1600 cars are always great to watch, as they are purpose-built race cars with open wheels. Drivers push the limits with their wheels just millimetres apart at speeds in excess of 200km/h.
The championship battle between the two title contenders gained traction and it was Dewald Brummer who managed to take a double victory on the day ahead of his main title rival Julian van der Watt in second. Alex Gillespie kept a close eye on the action ahead and finished in a solid third overall. The Extreme Supercars class saw a tooth and nail fight between the Ferrari F430 of Jonathan du Toit and a host of BMWs which were determined to spoil the party. After a wet qualifying session Du Toit could only place sixth on the grid behind the Porsche of Sun Moodley with a trio of BMWs determined to make a break from the pack up front.
But Du Toit’s Ferrari screamed through the pack and took a hard fought victory ahead of Gianni Giannoccaro in second place and Dawie Olivier in third.
In class A in the ZX10 Masters cup, Graeme van Breda take victory ahead of Jaco Gous and Kyle Robinson. Sanjiv Singh took victory in class B ahead of Russ Page and Henk Schuiling in third. In class C it was Pieter de Vos who took victory ahead of Johan le Roux and Teddy Brooke.
In the Thunder Bike class it was none other than Travis Naude who used his local knowledge and experience of the circuit to take Class A ahead of Henk Schuiling in second. Nico van der Merwe won Class B ahead of Shaun Vermaak and Gavin Upton in third. Ross McCrorie was victorious in class C ahead of Rupert Fourie. Dean Vos won class X ahead of Gareth Davidson.
Mathew Herbert won the ZX6 class ahead of Sandra Shelley.
ARTICLE: JETHRO SCHWARTZ