KZN circuit racers firing on all cylinders after long hiatus
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By Colin Windell
DURBAN - The long closed season finally ended with plenty of spritely action at Dezzi Raceway, Oslo Beach at the weekend with the first round of the 2021 KZN Road Racing Club series revving up with plenty of action of two wheels and four.
A long break often results in a season-opener that shows up the lack of track time in the form of crumpled metal, but this one by largely without incident – the main one coming from Steve Clark in one of four Backdraft Roadsters brought down from Durban by Tony Martin.
Powering away at the head of the field in the opening race for SportsCars, GT Cars and Retro Cars, an apparent throttle jam sent him off at Turn 7 and up the sandbank, fortunately with no injury and he came back to run one of the other cars in the second race.
This provided a golden Super GT opportunity for Trevor Graham in ‘the Red Rooster’ Backdraft Roadster to power away to win the heat from Brian Martin in the blue car normally driven by Mike McCloughlin in the SA Endurance Racing series.
Reg Sutton (Ford Escort) was third overall and winner of the Retro class, chased hard by Oliver Broome (Ford Escort) and Manfred Schroder finishing third in Super GT in his BMW.
Graham simply blasted away from the line in the second race to lead all the way, this time with Steve Clark in the blue car chasing hard all the way to the flag.
One of the major features of the KZN Road Racing Club is the promotion of motor sport, particularly motorcycle racing, and it encourages youngsters in the form of Mini GP – won at the weekend by Rylee Puren from Hayden Sharp and Ava Sharp.
However, this year sees a number of those youngsters stepping up to the main circuit in the 150 Junior class with Riley Day, Rylee Puren and Hannah Puren all having their first outing and drawing plenty of praise from seasoned competitors for their efforts.
This highly competitive class comprising the Juniors, 150 Masters, 150 Class and 150 Super Production always provides entertaining racing all through the field. All competitors in these classes ride identical Honda CBR 150 motorcycles modified according to class limits.
The day belonged to Forrest Brown who took control of proceedings in the 150 Super Production category and won both heats overall, hard pressed through out by Shaun Joffe.
In the overall results for the day the 150 Class went to Cazir Nairoth followed by Dishen Valjee and Tai Robinson with the 150 Masters going to Garry Robinson ahead of Sven Christensen and Florian Kroeber. Riley Day won the Juniors from Rylee Puren and Hannah Puren.
Ever spectacular, the flame-throwing Super Modified Golf of Elton Fuchs was in fine form in the opening heat of Super Modifieds and Modified race, beating a hard-charging Henk Lombard (VW Scirocco) to the line by just 0,7 seconds with the VW Golf of Ronald van Rensburg in third place.
A small mistake cost Fuchs dearly in the second encounter and it was Van Rensburg who took advantage to cross the line 0,5 seconds ahead of Fuchs, this time with Byron Oliver (Mini) in third place.
On the overall standings for the day Fuchs won the Super Modified class from Oliver and Mark Whitely (Hyundai i20). Ronal van Resnburg won Class A of Modifieds with Hank Lombard second ahead of Pierre Potgieter (VW Golf), while Class B went to Gary Commins (VW Golf), from Peter Blofield (VW Polo) and Richard Loynes (VW Golf). Class C went the way of Gary Brown (Ford Escort) from Jannie Petzer followed by his wife Charmaine, the paid in identical Reztep VW Polos.
Always entertaining, the two divisions for Motard riders produced the usual hectic action throughout the day with Hayden Louw emerging as top dog in the Super Motard category after some shoulder-to-shoulder racing with Ryan Matchett and Craig Bishop. In the Masters section it was Justin Mathie who truimphed from Adrian Jansen Ter Laeck and Brett Sharp.
Drew Gates picked up where he off at the end of last season and won overall in the 300 Class ahead of Calvin da Silva and Cazir Naroth while Peter St John Ward took the honours in the 300 Masters section from Deena Govender and Lovern Govender.
The next race meeting at Dezzi Raceway takes place on April 17.