Kyalami to go under the hammer


Johannesburg - The legendary Kyalami race circuit, which has been liquidated, is set to be auctioned on July 24 and could fetch as much as R200 million, The Times reported on Friday.

Joint managing director of the High Street Auction Co, which will conduct the auction, Lance Chalwin-Milton said motor racing devotees and property developers were showing interest in the 72 hectare property in Midrand.

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Kyalami - Packed to Capacity during the World Superbike Championship. PIC-Grant LevershaThe original Kyalami, seen in this Automobile Association spectators guide, was a fast, flowing circuit with one of the longest main straights in the world.

The auction house's director Joff van Reenen said: “We have had interest from the US and Europe and have been surprised by the legendary status that Kyalami has.” Clearly no true petrol-heads in that bunch.

But will Kyalami be saved from property developers looking at replacing the legendary track with pokey town houses?

That remains to be seen, but thankfully some of those interested in the property have indicated that they wanted to bring back the South African Grand Prix. Of course, some serious modifications would be required to acheive that.

The High Street Auction Co said that the Kyalami auction would be the largest no reserve auction in South African history, as well as the country's first race track auction.

The race track has hosted 21 grands prix in its history. The original Kyalami was a fast, flowing circuit with one of the longest main straights in the world. It was perfectly suited to lead-footed SA motorsport giants like John Love, Dave Charlton, Bob Olthoff, Tony Viana and Sarel van der Merwe.

The circuit was rebuilt in the early 1990s - and again in 1993 - as part of a commercial development, incorporating Sunset Bend, Clubhouse Corner and the Esses into a tight, twisty, very technical 4.26km circuit.

IOL & Sapa

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