South African brothers top a sensational Gazoo Toyota Racing Week
Topping this Gazoo Toyota Racing Week headlines, two sets of South African brothers starred on the international racing scene once again this weekend.
Kelvin’s Dream Birthday
It was a dream DTM debut for birthday boy Kelvin van der Linde, who put his Audi R8 on pole position before storming to a lights to flag victory to leave Monza in the championship lead on Sunday.
He beat Nico Muller in another Audi, Mercedes AMG GTR man Lukas Auer and little brother Sheldon van der Linde’s BMW M6. Kelvin ended sixth in Saturday’s race with Sheldon 12th as fellow rookie Kiwi Liam Lawson delivered Ferrari’s maiden DTM win at home.
Moving on to two wheels, SA star Brad Binder recovered from a Friday and Saturday practice run to forget and 17th on the grid to power home a fine fourth in Sunday’s German MotoGP at Sachsenring behind comeback kid Marc Marquez’ Honda, KTM teammate Miguel Oliveira and championship leader Fabio Quartararo.
Darren Snatches Unlikely Points
Brother Darryn Binder somehow scored points off an equally lowly grid position and a ride-through penalty to score a couple of Moto3 points as KTM rookie Pedro Acosta took his fourth win of the season, as another KTM man Remy Gardner won Moto2.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen meanwhile overcame championship rival Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes to win the French Grand Prix, Red Bull number 2 Sergio Perez third after he also passed Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas late in the race as Red Bull out-strategized their German rivals.
And in Formula E Porsche’s Pascal Wehrlein dominated the Mexican first race only to be farcically disqualified on an admin error. That left Lucas di Grassi to lead Rene Rast to an Audi Puebla E-Prix 1-2.
Toyota Gazoo Racing Upington 1000 Tops Local Menu
Topping the national racing scene, the inaugural Toyota Gazoo Racing Upington 1000 Desert Race proved as tough as all the promises as Century Racing duo Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cramer controlled their overnight lead to come home three and a quarter seconds ahead of Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings’ Gazoo Toyota Hilux and Lance Woolridge and Elvene Vonk’s Ford Racing Ranger.
Three more Hiluxes, privateers Chris Visser and Albertus Venter and Gazoo Racing duo Giniel de Villiers and Dennis Murphy, and the quickest crew on Sunday, Shameer Variyawa and Danie Stassen were next up ahead of Red-Lined Motorsport duo Conrad Rautenbach and Riaan Greyling and Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle’s fourth Gazoo Hilux. Malcolm and Frans Kock’s Ford Ranger won Class T, Lance Trethewey’s King Price BAT was first Special home and Cecil and Eldarus Larney’s Can Am was the top Side by Side.
There was also two-wheeled Cross Country action where Ian Rall powered is 250cc OR2 machine to GXCC Northern Regions victory at Ventersdorp from open class OR1 winner Mike Pentecost and 200cc OR3 winner Matthew Wilson to a Husqvarna 1-2-3. Second OR3 man Taki Bogiages’ Kawasaki was close behind ahead of OR1 trio Hein van Niekerk’s KTM, Tyron Beverley on a Husqvarna and Kawasaki lad D’artagnan Lobjoit.
Passion for Speed Spectacular
Topping the local on-track action this weekend, Zwartkops’ Passion for Speed kicked off on Saturday, where James Temple’s Shelby Daytona Coupé beat Josh Dovey’s ‘65 Ginetta to win the Le Mans Sports & GT 45 Minute enduro. Jonathan du Toit’s 65 Chevy Nova delivered a bloody nose to the hordes of monstrous Fords to win both Marlboro Legends races from Ben Morgenrood’s ‘65 Mustang, while Marc Miller’s Alfa Giulia and Carel Pienaar’s Lotus Cortina shared the U2 wins.
Willie Hepburn was unstoppable in the Auto Truck mixed category races in his original ’81 Opel Rekord V8 from Rob Beaumont’s ‘70 Porsche 917 recreation and Jeffrey Kruger’s Camaro.
Riaan Lubbe’s Alfa Junior won the entertaining Marlboro Crane Pre-66 races from Terrence Botes’ Cooper S and Gary Stacey’s Cortina. Cape visitor Franco Donadio’s Escort won both Midvaal Historics races from Alfa Trofeo winner Bjorn Gebert’s GTV6. And Ian Schofield’s March 77B was untroubled in the Historic Single Seaters.
In the contemporary racing classes, Charl Arangies’ Lamborghini fought Paulo Loureiro’s BMW off to win the G&H Extreme Supercars where the GT3 class was the dice of the day. Rory Atkinson beat Waldie Meintjies to win a chaotic all-Polo VW Challenge and Thomas Reib’s and Mackie Adlem’s Jaguar XKR shared the Mobil 1 V8 wins, where fresh faces Richard Fuller and Warren Lombard starred.
The Car Care Clinic 111 Sports, GTS and Saloons each raced a sprint, before combining in a 40-minute night-time enduro. Charl Smalberger took both 111 wins in his Golf GTI, while Jono du Toit and Brett Garland’s Honda Civics shared the Superhatch wins.
The racing continued on Sunday, where the opening HRSA sprint race proved the race of the day as PE visitor Rudolf de Vos’ thundering Class A Chevy Can-Am fended off Rui Campos’ nimble Class B Porsche 911 RSR for a thrilling victory. De Vos beat Campos overall as Deon van Vuuren’s Mazda, Jannie van Rooyen’s Scirocco, Tony Lundin’s Datsun, Charl Smalberger’s Alfa and Andy Gossman’s Datsun took Classes C to G.
Rob Clark’s Citroen won the opening HRSA Charlies SuperSpar Pursuit race from Wynand du Plessis Sr’s Porsche 944 and Riaan Roux’ Scirocco. Andre Hattingh’s Mercedes led du Plessis Sr. and Althea Pretorius home in race 2 as du Plessis won the Modified Fine, Roux the Trophy and Clark the Fine class wins.
Adrian Dalton’s M3 beat William Einkamerer’s 335i to both Bridgestone BMW Club wins. Jagger Robertson’s E46 took Class B, Nek Makris’ 328i Turbo Class C, Varish Ganpath’s 325Ci D and Arri van Heerden’s 325i Class E.
Andre Human took overall Lotus Challenge victory from Mackie Adlem after Thomas Falkiner and Jeffrey Kruger won the races. Wesley Maxwell beat Ben Knights to the Locost class win. And Gert van den Berg steered to a double DOE Formula Vee win over MD Bester and Peter Hills in race 1 and from and Bester in race 2.
Dezzi’s Sunday KZN Scraps
Sunday also saw KZN regional action at Dezzi, where the Super Modifieds produced an almighty scrap between Elton Fuchs, Pierre Potgieter and Keegan Sansom’s Golfs and Hank Lombard’s Scirocco. Fuchs took the first and Sansom the second wins. Byron Oliver’s Lotus 7 took Sports Car honours, while Peter Blofield won Super GT as veteran Piet Bredenhann debuted his splendid new Chevron B8 Lexus V8.
Young Blaze Baker powered his Kawasaki to both 300 and Formula Extreme bike wins despite a fall in the latter. Llewelyn Puren took the Powersports win, Hayden Louw Super Motard and Brett Sharp took Masters honours. Lee Singh won the 150s, Arthur Moller 150 Masters and Shaun 150 Super Production, where Quinn St John Ward was the top Junior.