Quintin van Jaarsveld
A fresh challenge awaited competitors in the opening round of the KwaZulu-Natal Road Racing Club Championship at Dezzi South Coast Raceway on Saturday.
Track owner Des Gutzeit recently made some exciting changes to the Oslo Beach track, and the weekend’s season-opener gave the 154 racers their first taste of the new and improved blacktop.
Some adjusted better than others in what was an entertaining start to the 2019 club championship.
The 300 Class produced some great action with 16 entries filling the grid. Malcolm Rudman and Hein Etzel led the pack in front of some other big names like Blaze Baker and Nikolai Conci, which gave the spectators a taste of what they came to see – good, clean racing.
The Modifieds Class was again packed to full capacity with 32 cars on the grid, which allowed for some tight racing throughout the track.
The Super GT Class had some very fast cars out on track, with Sun Moodley in the Bigfoot Porsche and Stuart Kidgell in the very quick Ultima, but the man of the class was Mike McLoughlin in the Backdraft Cobra, showing everyone how it’s done. The reverse grid in the second heat made for exciting racing with the faster cars battling their way through the grid to get to the front.
On two wheels, a spill near the end of the day saw Bryce Hills and Jade Gutzeit going down on their superbikes at turn 7. Gutzeit escaped the incident unscathed, however, Hills was transported to the hospital via ambulance. Fortunately, he was later discharged with some heavy bruising and no major injuries.
Drawing first blood were McLoughlin (Super GT), Dave Rabie (Sports), Manfred Schroder (Retro), Tim Kinsey (Time Challenge), Ronald van Rensburg (Modified A), Damien Parker (Modified B), Troy Edwards (Modified C) and Elton Fuchs (Super Modified).
The bike winners were Rudman (300cc and Formula Extreme A), Shaun du Preez (300cc Masters), Johan Basson (Formula Extreme B), Shaun Joffe (150cc), Llewelyn Puren (150cc Masters and Powersports), Etzel (Supermotard), Justin Mathie (Supermotard Masters) and Riley Nadauld (Juniors and Mini GP).
“It was a great opening round,” club chairman and double division winner Puren told eHowzit. “The new track made for some learning for the competitors, but mostly the consensus was that everyone enjoys the track changes.
“As always, thanks to the KZN Marshalls Association for their hard work and efficient clean-up stints between heats. Thanks to all our club sponsors who made our day happen – Carshop, for the new safety car, Honda Umhlanga, Barloworld Pinetown and Natal Recoveries for the recovery vehicles that makes the day so efficient.
“Our next event is on 13 April back at Dezzi Raceway and we look forward to seeing the spectators and competitors at the track enjoying the day.”
For more information about the club and their events, visit www.KZNRRC.co.za.
Photos by Graham Montanari/sponsored by Indy Go Tyre