Motoring / Motorsport

Circuit Racing Correspondent
3 minute read
2 Sep 2019
8:46 am

Extreme Festival does its name justice at East London

Circuit Racing Correspondent

A huge crowd was treated to a mix of spectacular racing and close contests, with a great moment of circuit history and the clinching of a title, thrown in. Those are the things for which Saturday’s Extreme Festival meeting at the East London Grand Prix circuit will be remembered.

CLOSE-UP. Michael van Rooyen (Gazoo Toyota Corolla) chasing Keagan Masters (VW Motorsport Jetta) during the East London Global Touring Car race. Picture: Dave Ledbitter.

Officially topping proceedings were two races for Global Touring Cars. Season points leader Simon Moss crashed his all Power Audi on Friday afternoon and the car handled badly after an all-night rebuild. That left Keagan Masters (VW Motorsport Jetta) to take the day’s opening race victory, threetenths of a second in front of Michael van Rooyen (Gazoo Toyota Corolla), with Johan Fourie (EPS Couriers BMW) and Daniel Rowe (VW Motorsport Jetta) rounding out the top four.

Race two, started from an inverted grid, provided a surprise. Tshops Sipuka drove his All Power Audi to victory, leading throughout despite being challenged by various determined drivers. In the end, he won, one-tenth of a second ahead of Van Rooyen, with Rowe, Masters and Fourie behind them, all covered by two seconds over the line.

The day’s results left Masters as the new championship points leader. Charl Smalberger (Universal Health Golf GTI) won the GTC2 races fromm Bradley Liebenberg (VW Motorsport Golf GTI), with Adrian Wood (Kyocera Golf GTI) and Paul Hill (Kalex Golf GTI) taking turns in the respective third places.

The history part was made during the opening Superbike race, when Steven Odendaal blasted the SA Superbikes Yamaha R1 around in a time of 1min 17.685sec – the iconic circuit’s quickest yet motorcycle lap. After initial race leader Clint Seller (King Price Yamaha R1) fell off, Odendaal won therace, leading home Lance Isaacs (SupaBets BMW S1000RR), Byron Bester (Hi-Tech Yamaha R1) and Dylan Barnard (Yamaha R1).

Odendaal won the next race as well, followed by a recovered Seller, Isaacs and Bester. Jared Schultz (Yamaha R6) won the first 600cc bike race from Kewyn Snyman (Yamaha R6), Blaze Baker (Yamaha R6) and Taric van der Merwe (Hi-Tech Yamaha). Schultz retired from race two, leaving Snyman to win, followed by Baker and Van der Merwe.

The first Falken Polo Cup race was red-flagged after about 30 seconds, when the cars of Arnold Neveling (Trinity Protection Polo), Keagan Campos (Campos Transport Polo), Jason Campos (Turn 1 Polo) and Clinton Bezuidenhout (Glyco Engines Polo) came together in the fearsomely fast Potter’s Pass sweep, all retiring in a giant cloud of car parts and dust.

After the restart, reigning champion Jeffrey Kruger (Universal Health Polo) took the victory, ahead of Jurie Swart (G Energy Polo), Matt Shorter (Monroe Polo) and Chris Shorter (A & E Polo). Kruger repeated his feat in race two, chased to the flag by Brad Liebenberg (Hello Mobile Polo), Matt Shorter and Keagan Campos.

Scott Temple (RDSA Mygale) took the opening Investchem F1600 race, ahead of Julian van der Watt, who started last after a dismal qualifying session, and then scythed his RDSA Mygale through the 12-car grid into second place.

Nicolas van Weely (Magnificent Paints Van Diemen) and Tiago Rebelo (TRMS Mygale) rounded out the top four. Van der Watt won race two, while Temple’s second place clinched the year’s national title for him. Rebelo and Alex Gillespie (Mygale) finished third and fourth, respectively.

The next round of the 2019 Extreme Festival will be held at the Western Cape Killarney circuit on Saturday, September 28.

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