Drama, brilliant spectacle, close racing and empty grandstands typified Saturday’s first round of the 2021 National Extreme Festival at the Western Cape Killarney circuit near Cape Town.
It was a crying shame that the hugely enthusiastic Cape Town crowds could not attend the meeting, since it produced a number of superb shows.
Topping events were two races for Global Touring Cars. The first heat went to a hard charging Michael van Rooyen (Gazoo Toyota Corolla), followed by Robert Wolk (Chemical Logistics Toyota Corolla), Lee Thompson (Universal BMW 2 Series) and Scott Temple (Chemical Logistics Toyota Corolla).
Race two, started from a partially inverted grid, saw Julian van der Watt take his Euro Performance Ford Focus ST to victory, scoring Ford’s first ever South African Global Touring Car victory in the process. He led home Wolk, Mandle Mdakane (Gazoo Toyota Corolla) and Temple.
Bradley Liebenberg won the opening SupaCup race in his Sparco SupaPolo, followed by Jonathan Mogotsi (Volkswagen Motorsport SupaPolo), Saood Variawa (SVR SupaPolo) and Jason Campos (Turn 1 SupaPolo). Liebenberg won again the next time out, chased to the flag by Jeffrey Kruger (Universal Health SupaPolo), Mogotsi and Variawa.
The opening Polo Cup race was red-flagged after four laps when the Stradale Polo of Kwanda Mokoena was thumped into a long spin in the pit straight, to be solidly collected by the Trinity car of Damian Hammond.
Then the restarted race was halted a lap early when the other Stradale Polo of Farhaan Basha got punted sideways and crashed in the back straight. All of which left local hero Jurie Swart (Alpine Autohaus Polo) to win, ahead of Leyton Fourie (VW Polo), Arnold Neveling (Stradale Polo) and Jean-Pierre van der Walt (Platinum Polo).
The 14-year old Tate Bishop (Angri Polo) led race two until he was roughly shouldered wide at the end of the pit straight. Afterwards Swart went on to win again, this time followed by Clinton Bezuidenhout (Universal Health Polo), Neveling and Fourie.
The first race for G&H Transport Extreme Supercars went to Charl Arangies (Stradale Lamborghini Huracan), leading home Dayne Angel (Autohaus Angel Porsche 911 GT), Marcel Angel (Autohaus Angel Ferrari 488 GT3) and Silvio Scribante (Scruderia Scribante Lamborghini Huracan).
Arangies and Dayne Angel finished first and second again the next time out, with the top four places rounded out by Silvio Scribante and Marcel Angel. The third and final race saw Arangies lead home Silvio Scribante, Angel and Aldo Scribante (Lamborghini Huracan).
Andrew Rackstraw (Investchem Mygale) won the first Investchem F1600 race, leading home Jarrod Waberski (DAW (Mygale), Ewan Holtzhausen (Total Plastics Mygale) and Josh le Roux (Formula 1600). Rackstraw won race two as well, followed by Nicholas van Weely (Magnificent Paint Van Diemen), Waberski and Alex Vos (Ecurie Zoo Van Diemen).
David McFadden (Yamaha R1) took the first NGK SA Superbike race from defending champion Clinton Seller (King Price Honda CBR), Garrick Vlok (Yamaha R1) and Brandon Staffen (AJH Cooling Yamaha R6). McFadden and Seller paired off at the front again in race two, followed this time by Brett Roberts (Linea Lights Yamaha R6) and Staffen.
Local racer David Enticott (Sarum Engineering ZX10) rode brilliantly to clinch the opening SunBet Kawasaki Masters Cup race, followed by Rob Cragg (Madmacs ZX10), Graeme van Breda (Stefanutti Stocks ZX10) and Jacques Ackerman (South Barker ZX10).
In the process Enticott broke the Killarney Masters Cup lap record, held by multiple former champion Stuart McLeod since 2013. Cragg won the next time out, crossing the finish line ahead of current champion Van Breda, Enticott and Ackerman.
Reigning champion Mackie Adlem (Adlem Auto Jaguar) won the first Mobil 1 V8 Supercar race, leading home Terry Wilford (Fuchs Ford Falcon), Franco di Matteo (Delco Batteries Jaguar) and Thomas Reib (Mobil 1 Chevrolet Lumina). Reib won the next time around, ahead of Adlem, Di Matteo and David Coetzee (ELKSA Ford Falcon).
The next round of the 2021 Extreme Festival will be held at the Zwartkops circuit on Saturday, 17 April.